In this middle portion of Job’s reply to his three “friends” he continues firstly by reiterating in no uncertain terms, that their “counsel” has been less than helpful. Job says they have, in fact, misrepresented God and would have shown themselves to be wise if they had stayed silent! Since they didn’t, Job says they will be held to account by God for their words.
Job wants to speak to God. He wants to hear from God. He makes this clear in verse 3, then again in verse 13. From verse 17 onwards he makes it clear that he is unsure what God’s reply will be. God may indeed reveal some, currently unknown sin to Job.
Job doesn’t presume to know the mind of God or speak for God authoritatively in any way. The key to this chapter is found in verses 15 & 16. Central to Job’s desire to hear from God, regardless of what he might hear is a hope and trust in God and a confidence that Job is not in the category of the godless.
Job’s hope and trust here will be echoed similarly by David many years later in 1 Chronicles 21:13 – “Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let me fall into the hand of the Lord, for his mercy is very great, but do not let me fall into the hand of man.”” Here David was guilty of disobedience to God. Yet, when it came to discipline for his sin he would rather receive this directly from the hand of God than by way of other men for God is merciful, even in discipline.
Job is confused and uncertain of the reasons why he is experiencing all of his suffering. Yet, he knows God is worthy of his trust. His hope is rooted in the character of God.
This, of course, is the essential nature of faith, saving faith. We cast ourselves upon the mercy of God, confidently hoping in His provision for our sin in the substitutionary death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ.
This is a living faith, a living hope, an active trust. Though the Lord might slay us, in Christ we are not numbered among the godless, our salvation is sure and secure.
Let us actively trust Him and hope in Him in this midst of our trails and the tragedies of this fallen world.
Soli Deo Gloria
Items to focus your faith: