Pondering Job in a Pandemic – Chapter 19

If I were planning this series down to the day, I would have planned for this chapter to fall on Easter Sunday. Yet we come to it on Easter Monday – as it is called here in New Zealand.

Through the first 22 verses of his reply, Job continues to describe and lament his plight. His “counsellors” have continued to torment him with their words. They have yet to identify any sin in his life but they continue to accuse him of sin! Job feels the heavy hand of God upon him. He knows all that is happening to him is due to the purposeful hand of God. Yet he is tormented, not only for his loss and physical suffering but because he does not know why God is doing this.

Everyone has abandoned him in his time of need. There is no one in his life who is looking on him in mercy!

As Job considers his desperate plight and realises that no one is listening to him and no one is considering the possibility he may not be suffering due to guilt for sin, he wishes hie could write his story in a way where others in the future could read his account. In doing so they would have the vantage point of the future to then give vindication to Job’s claims (23-24).

For Job has incredible confidence, confidence even in the midst of such suffering that he has a Redeemer, that his Redeemer lives, that his Redeemer at the last of all things will stand on the earth, and that after all of his flesh has been utterly destroyed through death he will in the flesh, see his God, Who is His Redeemer!

These are, of course, two of the most famous verses in Job. Their content is incredible. What Job knew to be true and His confidence in this future reality is mind-blowing. Job had confidence in a future resurrection. Job had confidence in a Redeemer Who is God. Job had confidence that this Redeemer would stand upon the earth. Job had confidence that in the last, when this is all over, he would stand before his Redeemer!

Job had such faith, clearly given to him from God as clearly this amount of truth was granted to him by God, in the midst of his suffering at a time when no one showed him mercy, no one believed his testimony.

At this moment, under all of the strain, Job feels as though he is going to faint. He turns to his friends once again and declares that if they keep pursuing him and keep insisting they are in the right, God will judge them and hold them to account for their words!

We’ve just passed Easter Sunday. Do you have the faith and confidence of Job? Do you know your Redeemer lives, that He will once again stand upon the earth, that you will receive a resurrected body and will see Him in the flesh?

Amazingly, Job’s story has been recorded. His words have been written. They have been preserved. We are reading them now as have millions for thousands of years. As will many countless more in ages to come, until our Redeemer returns!

When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:
“Death is swallowed up in victory.”
“O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

1 Corinthians 15:54-58

Notice Paul’s concluding words to a long section addressing the hope inducing truth of the promised resurrection. This truth and hope is meant to transform the way we live today.

We may at times feel like Job. We may feel like everyone and everything is against us. Yet we can continue steadfast always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing our labour in the Lord is not in vain – regardless of what others say or even our perceived lack of fruitfulness.

If we are on the Lord’s side, at the day of resurrection, when we see our Redeemer in the flesh, we will be on the right side of history!

Soli Deo Gloria

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