As Job is going through his trial, he has three friends come visit him to “comfort” him. Some comfort they are! They basically tell Job that all this calamity has come upon him because he is a sinner. Job challenges them to find his sin. He complains that God is treating him like a sinner even though he is blameless. These lousy three friends start naming all kinds of things that Job is probably guilty of since he is being punished by God.
Man, I am glad I don’t have friends like that. Well, I guess most of my friends aren’t like that! Anyway, what a terrible thing to think about someone and about God. Calamity does not come from God because someone is a sinner. We already see God’s intent here with Job. God is proving something to Satan and bringing something better for Job. God is merciful. God does not rejoice in bringing correction but is slow to anger and abounding in mercy.
Psalm 103:8 (NKJV) — 8 The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
Joel 2:13 (NKJV) — 13 So rend your heart, and not your garments; Return to the LORD your God, For He is gracious and merciful, Slow to anger, and of great kindness; And He relents from doing harm.
One of the friends, Elihu, comes to Job and chastises his two other friends for their foolishness (Job 32-34). They called Job a sinner, but couldn’t actually name any sin or accuse him. Yet, Elihu also chastises Job because Job was making himself righteous in his own eyes. Elihu is partially correct and knows that every man is a sinner. But God had called Job righteous and blameless. So Job was righteous and blameless. Yet, Elihu is still right. The attitude Job must have is one of humility. To know that I am righteous in Jesus Christ does not mean to think of myself as sinless or to think I am not a sinner. My sin nature still exists. It wars with the spirit. Paul fully understood this.
Romans 7:23–25 (NKJV) — 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.
And Paul called himself the chief of sinners!
1 Timothy 1:15 (NKJV) — 15 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.
Paul knows he is still a sinner. But, Paul also knows that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners! Just as with Paul, my flesh (or my human sin nature) is at war with the Spirit within me. I must take care to know my sin in humility. Only then can I know the grace of Jesus that conquers the sin nature. And it will be through Jesus Christ that I will be delivered from this body of death.
In His Service, Scott
This Week’s Reading Plan:
- Day 1 – Job 35-37
- Day 2 – Job38-39
- Day 3 – Job 40-42
- Day 4 – Psalms 1-8
- Day 5 – Psalms 9-16
- Day 6 – Psalms 17-20
- Day 7 – Psalms 21-25