Love’s in Charge {Learning from Job, post 2}

Book of Job, post 2

Last week I introduced a series of posts I’ll be writing on lessons learned from the book of Job.  As I mentioned last week, God brought me to this book again(!) and is encouraging me to learn.  …Burning dross and fostering growth…  …Teaching me to see past my struggles to the greater lessons behind them.  No wonder I’ve landed in Job again, right?  Poor Job, he was a righteous man that suffered greatly and when things couldn’t get worse, along came his friends who criticized him and suggested he must have brought all this on himself.

Painful!

Job is such a deep, spiritually rich book.  Of course, I believe all books of the Bible are, but Job is a little different.  Job is the only book that’s wholly devoted to the topic of suffering and its purpose in the lives of God’s followers.

Reading and studying Job can strengthen our faith and theology.  Unfortunately, American culture abounds with poor theology – both in and outside of the Christian church.  Going through Job shines light on and exposes the poor, weak theology of Job’s three older friends for the mess that it is — which God later confronted them about.  Modernized and dressed freshly, sadly their beliefs are still prevalent today.  God’s Word includes Job’s story to teach us how to view suffering properly,.  Since the book of Job educates us, there is no need to be confused about suffering in the life of the godly.

When I was newer to Bible study, I had a difficult time reading Job because I wasn’t keeping in  mind the entire Bible and the truths of God’s love and character.  So, this week, I just want to stress that the book of Job must be read and studied with a whole Bible context mindset.  It is a heavy book, weighty with tragedy and the bad advice of ignorant but solicitous friends.  If one were to pick a short passage at random, it might be difficult to tell what’s theologically right or wrong.  Actually, that’s much like life all around us, isn’t it?  Stripped of context, it’s sometimes difficult to discern the right from the wrong.  {For example, love is good, but loving sin is wrong.  In our current culture we are sometimes told love means acceptance and “tolerance”, when the Bible tells us true love means confronting and not condoning sin.}  Concerning the book of Job, we could easily take the theological inaccuracies of Job’s friends and mistake them for truth — if we didn’t carefully examine their words in context and with a whole Bible mindset.

Another thing one must constantly remember is God’s steadfast love.  Without an accurate understanding of God’s immense, sacrificial love for mankind, the book of Job can look harsh and unjust.  But, Love’s in charge!  That, my friends, is an amazing truth!  God, in all His majestic authority, is on the throne and He’s consistently only allowing events for our eternal good.   Even if His ways are beyond our comprehension, we should never criticize or assume He is uninvolved or unloving.  Let me say it again… God is love, He loves you, and Love’s in charge!

Steadfast Love, Heartfelt Reflections, all rights reserved

Steadfast Love, Heartfelt Reflections, all rights reserved

 

Here are a few other verses I like to keep in mind while studying Job:

“For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16, HCSB)

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Rom 8:28, NLT)

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
… 

 “Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him;
I will protect him, because he knows my name.
When he calls to me, I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him.
With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.”  (Psa 91:1,14-16, ESV)

If you are going through a period of suffering or affliction, I challenge you to read and study Job’s story.  And, I’d be honored if you’d tag along with me through this series of posts and let me know what you think.  I pray that God would bless you, show you His greater plan, bring you comfort and strength, and reveal His steadfast love to you.  You are always free to email me (see my About page for the address) to ask for more specific prayer.

**If you would like to use this series as a Bible study, here are daily assignments until next week:

  1. Read an introduction to the book of Job.  Here are some resources: Matthew Henry’s short introduction , and John Gill’s long introduction
  2. Read Job 1
  3. Read Job 2
  4. Read Job 3
  5. Skip to the end, and read Job 40:1-8 and 42:1-6.  Also look up any or all of these passages about God’s love:
    • Psalm 145:8,9
    • Psalm 117
    • Rom 5:8
    • Eph 2:4,5
    • 1 John 3:16

How has God showed you lately that He is “Love in Charge”?  Do you have favorite verses that remind you of His steadfast love?

Ali

{This is the second in a series of posts I’ll be doing on lessons learned from the book of Job.  The posts, thoughts, and gathered research have all materialized out of my personal quiet times with God and morning Bible studies. I’m also linking this post right here for Faith Filled Fridays over at MissionalWomen.com.}

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5 thoughts on “Love’s in Charge {Learning from Job, post 2}

  1. Pingback: Righteous, Not Perfect {Learning from Job – post 3} | Heartfelt Reflections

  2. Pingback: Meet Jen… a Woman Who Shines for God {Learning from Job} | Heartfelt Reflections

  3. Pingback: Meet Susie… a Courageous Prayer Warrior {Learning from Job} | Heartfelt Reflections

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