Day 147 – Thru the Bible
Today we continue in Job and Psalms.
Job 29 – A poignant note of loss is sounded toward the end of Job’s concluding speech in reply to his friends. Job looks back at the “seven fat years” of his life (see Genesis 41:29) and talks enthusiastically about them: “Oh, that I were as in the months of old, as in the days when God watched over me…Men listened to me and waited and kept silence for my counsel…I lived like a king among his troops.”
The gospel does not assess success as does the world but rather, in a direction Job is just barely beginning to learn, “God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of Him you are in Jesus . . . so that, as the Apostle Paul wrote, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:27–31).
Do ever long for “the good ole days”? How do you remind yourself that God is using both what, from our perspective! seems to be “good” and “bad” in our lives to grow us?
Job 30 – Although Job had delivered the truly needy from their unrighteous oppressors (29:11–17), those who now mock him are themselves needy, because of their own actions and foolishness.
The plants mentioned in verse 4 represent desperation.
Job describes his three friends as casting off any restraint, as if they were taking advantage of an easy military conquest (through a wide breach).
Job pictures himself as one of those whose cries for help he used to answer. In his own distress he has only found evil where he hoped for good, and isolation and mourning when he has called for help.
There are times our friends will get it wrong when they attempt to comfort us. How do you put your trust in the faithfulness of God Himself versus hoping friends will say the right things?
Job 31 – Job believes that his life is lived before and governed by the Almighty, who does number all my steps and Job professes purity in avoiding sexual lust: how then could I gaze at a virgin?
Job had avoided adultery, knowing that it can have far-reaching destructive effects like fire (see Proverbs 6:27–29). And a judge could order heavy fines on an adulterer.
Job met the needs of his servants, so that they would not have a complaint against him for which he would have no answer for God.
The law commanded Israelites to care for the poor, widow, fatherless, and needy (Exodus 22:21–27). Job lived this way because he believed God weighed his actions and that calamity was the consequence for the unrighteous (Job 31:23; compare vv. 2–4).
Job has guarded against the idolatry of trusting in the wealth that God has provided rather than trusting in God himself. He has also avoided the idolatry of worshiping what God has created.
Who is there that has not been filled with his meat? Job’s household was always well fed. He also gave lodging to the sojourner. Lodging was of critical importance to protect strangers from the dangers of the streets at night.
Job wishes once again for an answer regarding his offenses. Then he could give an account of all my steps to the One who numbers them (see v. 4).
Job lived under the law, and did well, but we know he was not perfect. Likewise, we know we cannot perfectly keep the law, yet perfection is what the law demands. This is why we must be in Jesus—as He is the One who lived out the law perfectly. In Him, we are declared by the Father not guilty.
Are you trusting in your ability to live a “good” life? If so, you will come up short.
How do you put your trust firmly in Jesus alone?
Psalm 142 – This Psalm of lament expresses David’s cry for God’s deliverance when he feared for his life while hiding in a cave. This may refer to a time when he was fleeing from Saul, who was seeking to kill him (1 Samuel 24), or perhaps a similar occasion. David’s trust in God during this situation is remarkable. Although he was an able warrior, and while he had keen wit and ability, he also realized that his only hope of living and fulfilling what God had called him to do was as God intervened and brought about his deliverance—a realization of saving grace that ultimately must be embraced by Believers in every age.
David is desperate. He feels there is no escape, so he cries to the Lord, who alone is his refuge. He recognizes the superior strength of those who oppose him, but with confidence he lays his life before the Lord, expressing his complete trust and hope. The future tense verbs that end the Psalm are telling: “The righteous will surround me, for You will deal bountifully with me.” Here is staggering confidence in God! No matter what the wicked plot and how powerful they are, God is greater and He will deliver.
Is this not the heart of the message of the gospel itself? No matter how great is our opponent—which, among other things, includes the sin and guilt of our own lives—God is greater, and His provision more fully revealed in Jesus for our deliverance cannot fail. In Jesus we know that the righteous will surround us, that God will deal bountifully with us.
How do you to God’s protection and provision in your life?
What other thoughts or questions does today’s reading bring up?
Some of these notes are from the ESV Gospel Transformation Bible study notes. We highly recommend this study Bible.
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