« August 30th readings | Main | September 1st readings »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


What about Elihu?

After Job gives his last speech (ch. 31) which is basically self-vidication, he rests. Not only does Job recount the sins he did not commit, but in the last few verses claims to be environmetally and ecologically correct :)

Who is this guy? He gets six chapters, so he must be important???? Is he the mediator Job wishes for in earlier chapters? Is he the false prophet as some claim? Or is Elihu analogous to John the Baptist in that he prepares the way for the Lord in this story?

Elihu means "My God is He" or another translation "in God's stead". Reading ahead Elihu is not mentioned by God, but the other four are addressed. Some feel he is loving and gentle - yet very critical of Job. It is also said Elihu does not reason (like the three friends) - but reveals.

Who is Elihu?

Some think Elihu is a bit of a braggart. but consider the times, and he may be just laying the platform for a "right to speak".

Elihu says the friends are wrong by saying suffering is in correlation to unrighteousness. They offer no remedy to Job's condition - yet they condemn Job. This condemning (judgment - "krinos") is the kind Jesus later said we are not to do.

Job is wrong - the root problem with Job is there's a sediment of pride in the bottom of the beaker of his life and when he's upset by the 3....the sediment stirs up with his life of righteousness......and thats a problem - john Piper

In Job's self-vindication - Job has gone too far.

God is not accountable to man, but it is the other way around. How often when disasters happen do we hear people want to know "Why did God allow this?" Interesting, that when good things happen in life - I am not so sure the same people are there to thank God.

God is not his enemy. There is another reason that God punishes. Elihu feels there is a residue of pride in the righteous. Chastisement is the correction.

'Like a surgeons knife causes pain, but the purpose is to cure.' (John Piper)
Some revealing statements:

God is just
Job34:12 "It is unthinkable that God would do wrong,
that the Almighty would pervert justice."

Should there be forgiveness with no repentance?
Job34:33 Should God then reward you on your terms,
when you refuse to repent?

Elihu believes Job has added rebellion to his sin of pride.

Man brings nothing to the table.
Job 35:7-8 If you are righteous, what do you give to him,
or what does he receive from your hand?
Your wickedness affects only a man like yourself,
and your righteousness only the sons of men.
[NOTE: We can do good or bad in this world. Good or bad can be recognized by mankind. But what has this to do with standing before God? We are not perfect - thus we have no standing before God on our own merit.]

God does not answer the cries (prayers) of the wicked.
Job 35:12 He does not answer when men cry out because of the arrogance of the wicked.
[Note: I believe this is also mentioned in Proverbs. It may sound harsh, but I believe the first prayer God will heed from man is - "I am lost - save me". Think about it - Why should God heed (he hears, but will not heed) a request from one who rejects Him? And later rejects His Son and plan of salvation?]

Again repentance is the key to forgiveness.

Job 36:10-11 He makes them listen to correction
and commands them to repent of their evil.
If they obey and serve him,
they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity
and their years in contentment.

Man rejects or accepts.
Job 36:13,15 "The godless in heart harbor resentment;
even when he fetters them, they do not cry for help....But those who suffer he delivers in their suffering;
he speaks to them in their affliction."

God is calling you Job. He is trying to get your attention. God is not a bellhop - who is at our beck and call. Quit trying to deal with God. Treat God with the respect He deserves. Know that His wonders are beyond our comprehension. Be in awe and revere God.

In my reading of “With Christ In The School Of Prayer”, I ran across a reference to a Lutheran pastor named Johann Christoph Blumhardt (1805-1880).

I found the following information very enlightening and encouraging from a website with sermons by Richard M. Riss from Middlesex Presbyterian Church, Middlesex, N.J.

The name of this sermon is called, “THE ACTS OF GOD IN HISTORY”, given Feb. 22, 1998.

source: http://www.grmi.org/Richard_Riss/sermons/0002.html

“One of the most remarkable modern-day stories of revival concerns Johann Christoph Blumhardt (1805-1880), who began pastoring a Lutheran church in Moetlingen, Germany in 1838. Within a few years, a young girl in his church named Gottlieben Dittus was diagnosed by physicians as ‘demon-possessed.’ She had what people said was a strange nervous disorder, and many psychic phenomena were taking place in her home. Everyone in her family and in the village seemed to knew about these things, and finally, one of the doctors came to Blumhardt and asked him, ‘Is there no pastor in this village who can pray? I can do nothing here.’

Blumhardt wanted to have absolutely nothing to do with this, but because of pressure from his congregation, he felt compelled to pray after this doctor confronted him. The resulting spiritual battle lasted two years, and during this time, Blumhardt was neglecting his pastoral work. He was becoming tense and exhausted, and people began to think that he was about ready to collapse, mentally and physically.

But then, something happened unexpectedly. Gottlieben's sister, who was in the room, gave a loud, long cry in a strange voice, ‘Jesus is Victor,’ and suddenly, this girl was delivered. On the
very same day, many people in the village reported hearing the whirring of wings and cries of despair, ‘Into the abyss, into the abyss, woe oh woe, we must go into the abyss!’

These events transformed the whole village. There was a tremendous revival in which lives were transformed, broken marriages were restored, enemies were reconciled, and people began to experience physical healings.

Blumhardt was more surprised by this than anyone. Prior to this time, as a matter of course, he had been laying his hands upon various members of his Lutheran church for absolution. But suddenly, people were experiencing healings when he was doing this.

His preaching began to take on a new depth, and people started to come from all over Germany to hear him preach. He had to conduct five services every Sunday, and his little church was filled to capacity each time, with people standing outside up to a radius of up to an entire kilometer.

At one point, the German emperor himself came to find out what was going on in this little town.”

Johann C. Blumhardt (1805-1880) is regarded by many as the father of German pietism. He had a son named Christoph F. Blumhardt (1842-1919) influenced a whole generation of Europeans, including Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Emil Brunner, Oscar Cullman, and Karl Barth.

Praise God for a godly legacy! What rich treasures are in the Body of Christ!

Job 37 (NKJV)
As for the Almighty, we cannot find Him; He is excellent in power, in judgment and abundant justice; He does not oppress.
Therefore men fear Him; He shows no partiality to any who are wise of heart.

Elihu really got this exactly correct! God is truly awesome! We can never ever hope to find God unless He had taken the first step and revealed Himself to us. THANK GOD THAT GOD TOOK THAT FIRST STEP—when we look at the Lord Jesus, we do see the Father!

John 14 (NKJV)
“If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.”
Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.”
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

Job 38 (NKJV) - The LORD Reveals His Omnipotence to Job
Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said:
“Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me.

We really have to be careful to speak “glibly” and “so casually” that we give the impression that we are on His level or that we know everything about God!

It has been said before and it bears repeating: Job’s “friends” were convinced they knew the mind of God and God’s will concerning Job—and they were completely wrong as God Himself says in the last chapter of the book of Job.

Yet, we CAN REALLY KNOW God, and we are CALLED TO REALLY KNOW God. But, it must be born out of spending time before the Lord in prayer, meditation on God’s Word, fasting, etc.

We do not do these things to EARN entrance to intimacy—it is just the way to intimately know God. We need to set aside distractions (sin, desires for pleasure that war in our members, TV, other good things, etc.) in order to know God.

It is easier to talk about it than to do it. Yet, IT IS WORTH IT!

The Lutheran pastor Johann C. Blumhardt (1805-1880) is one example of reaching deep into the treasures of the Presence of Christ.

2 Corinthians 4 (NKJV)
And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,” [Psalm 116:10] we also believe and therefore speak,
knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you.

Now the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul speaks how we can reach into the treasures of the Presence of Christ.

Reading a portion of Psalm 116 (NKJV) is very helpful in understanding what the Holy Spirit is saying in 2 Corinthians 4:13

Psalm 116 (NKJV)
I love the LORD, because He has heard my voice and my supplications.
Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.
The pains of death surrounded me, and the pangs of Sheol laid hold of me; I found trouble and sorrow.
Then I called upon the name of the LORD:
“O LORD, I implore You, deliver my soul!”
Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yes, our God is merciful.
The LORD preserves the simple; I was brought low, and He saved me.
Return to your rest, O my soul, for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.
I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living.
I believed, therefore I spoke, “I am greatly afflicted.”

The Jewish translation and comment on Psalm 116 is extremely useful and helpful in helping me understanding what the Holy Spirit speaks through the Apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:13.

This denotes fervent pleading.

The Psalmist explains that BEFORE He invoked Hashem’s Name, these thoughts passed through his mind. That is, he meditated on God’s Word, in which his faith was planted, and out of which his faith grows. “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget NOT His benefits.”

I said to my soul that it would find peace and comfort ONLY if it would return to Hashem.

I trust that which I have previously said – ‘Return my soul, unto your rest’ – for I believe that God can redeem me from my deep suffering and restore my tranquility.

That last comment is a TREMENDOUS blessing! It really unlocked a key for me.

In essence, this has been my meditation today:
David calls upon the Lord. Before he does so, however, he meditates on the CHARACTER of God as WRITTEN IN THE WORD of God in order to establish his prayers in the faith God can accept.

I call on the Lord. Before I do so, however, I meditate on the CHARACTER of God as WRITTEN IN THE WORD of God in order to establish his prayers in the faith God can accept.

As David meditates on the Lord, he speaks to his soul that it would find peace and comfort ONLY if it would return to Hashem. He casts all of his care, all of his being, onto the Lord, the ONLY Source of his total life!

As I meditate on the Lord, I speak to my soul that it would find peace and comfort ONLY if it would return to Hashem. I cast all of his care, all of his being, onto the Lord, the ONLY Source of his total supply!

Then, David verbally RE-AFFIRMS the positive confession he made earlier in the midst of a great trial: He trusts that which he had previously said – ‘Return my soul, unto your rest’ – for I believe that God can redeem me from my deep suffering and restore my tranquility.


I use the moniker "Princess Chris" on another bulletin board and posted this yesterday:


If you read the thread, it explains the basis of my conclusions.

Then today, this text is presented in II Corinthians 5:1-5

1Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. 2Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, 3because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. 4For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.


2Cor4 and 5:1-10

2Cor4:18 "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."

I believe praying for this kind of "focus" is in God's Will, and the kind of prayer God answers.

2Cor5:1 "Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands." NIV

How do we "know"? John 14:1-4, and more importantly the last part of verse 19.

"..Because I live, you also will live."

Because Jesus is alive.

When our physical body dies, we will have a glorified body in heaven. "not built by human hands", being "not of this creation" (Heb 9:11) but of God - an eternal body.

From tent to house or building - in software terms - we are due for an upgrade :)
The problem here, and I did not see Bob Deffingbaugh pointing it out: We do not get glorified bodies until the resurrection of our earthly bodies. In the meantime, at death, we live in heaven as disembodied spirits (if I am wrong about this - please someone correct me.)

So while Paul has no problem with absent from the body - he is REALLY looking forward to the Resurrection. Paul wants his glorified body, as should the Corinthians. Maybe Paul is making this point here because of how Greeks view the spirit and the body. They think being a "spirit" in the afterlife is the be-all-end-all. That the body is just a hindrance and the spirit is what counts. Paul is saying, 'You don't know - the heavenly glorified body will be fabulous - it will be the completion of all God's plans - we will be like Jesus. You want - you should really really want this glorified body.'

Because when we get the "glorified body" we will not be naked - our disembodied spirit will be clothed. I think this is also a reference to the completed work of God in regards to Adam and Eve. After sinning they realized they were naked, now in full circle we will be eternally clothed in our "glorified body". Death and what it does to our mortal bodies will here be completely conquered.

2Cor5:5 "Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come."

Greek tense is aorist - completed action - and there is that word again - "deposit" in Gk. "arrhabon" meaning: money which in purchases is given as a pledge or downpayment that the full amount will subsequently be paid. We have God's Word on the deal.
There are only two places a "saved" person can be - on earth or in heaven - never in the "grave".

Thus while on earth we make it our goal to please him, as we do in heaven (by what we have done on earth in his name.)

Why? Because "the "saved" person will stand before the Bema Seat of Christ for our rewards or lack of rewards. If we strive to please Him on earth, then He will be pleased with us in heaven.

The Bema Seat in Corinth is still there (I hear) and is on display. The athletes from the Isthmian games received their rewards at the Bema Seat. Punishment from trials was also administered from the Bema Seat.

Paul has already mentioned in 1Cor that our works will be tested by Christ, and only what is good will be left. That is what we will be judged on for our rewards. How many will you and I have left after Christ's assessment of our Christian lives???????
So the saved person will have a final exam before Christ. Paul would tell the Corinthians - when do you start prepearing for the "final"? - morning of, night before, or in advance. To do well, it should be in advance. So set your sights on the eternal, prepare for your exam now. Get cracking!

What will be judged? According to Chuck Missler: deeds according to Scripture, motivation of deeds (to bring honor/glory to God), and the words you speak (perhaps thoughts also - oops that is a biggie!)

Job 37:1-39:30

I have heard this, “God is in control,” probably hundreds of times. It is one of those pithy little sayings that I just repeat but have never really considered the words that make up the saying nor the true weight of the saying. Today, with this reading I kind of “get it.” God IS in control. No matter what it looks like, feels like, whether we call out, “Where was God when the World Trade Towers fell five years ago, God is in control.

"And have you ever ordered Morning, 'Get up!' told Dawn, 'Get to work!' So you could seize Earth like a blanket and shake out the wicked like cockroaches? As the sun brings everything to light, brings out all the colors and shapes, The cover of darkness is snatched from the wicked-- they're caught in the very act!
(Job 38:12-15 MSG)

God is surly in control despite what we may think, despite what it looks like. WOW

Grace and peace,


You said: The problem here, and I did not see Bob Deffingbaugh pointing it out: We do not get glorified bodies until the resurrection of our earthly bodies. In the meantime, at death, we live in heaven as disembodied spirits (if I am wrong about this - please someone correct me.)

I don't know that I want to go so far as to "correct" you, but I would offer something I read recently by J. Vernon McGee that may provide some additional light on this subject:

Thru-The-Bible Commenary Series, The Epistles, Ephesians, J. Vernon McGee,
pp. 118-119

"When he ascended up on high" refers to the ascension of Christ. At that time He did two things: (1) He led captivity captive, which refers, I believe, to the redeemed of the Old Testament who went up to paradise when they died. Christ took these believers with Him out of paradise into the very presence of God when He ascended. Today when a believer dies, we are not told that he goes to paradise, but rather he is absent from the body and present with the Lord (See 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23). (2) When Christ ascended He also gave gifts to men. This means that He conferred gifts upon living believers in the church so that they might witness to the world. In His ascension, Christ not only brought the Old Testament saints into God's presence, but he also, through the Holy Spirit, bestowed His gifts. At the Day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit baptized believers into the body of Christ and then endowed them with certain gifts, enabling them to function as members of the body. The Holy Spirit put each of them in a certain place in the body, and He has been doing the same with each new believer ever since.

"(Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?

"He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above the heavens, that he might fill all things.) [Eph. 4:9-10]

"The logical explanation of these verses is that since Christ ascended, He must have of necessity descended at some previous period. Some see only the Incarnation in this. The early church fathers saw in it the work of Christ in bringing the Old Testament saints out of paradise up to the throne of God. Although the Apostles' Creed states that He descended into hell, it means hades, the place where the dead were, and it is not necessary to assume that He entered into some form of suffering after His death. His Incarnation and death were His humiliation and descent, and they were adequate to bring the redeemed of the Old Tstament into the presence of God. I recognize, however, that there are other interpretations."

Ramona & isn't there such comfort in finally coming to the Truth/Realization of your revelation that GOD TRULY IS IN CONTROL. Oh what a sweet deliverance from unbelief & doubt when we come to know our Savior truly is in control of all.




I also have McGee's commentary. No problem with what you quote here in your post.

I am not sure what the "gifts" bestowed to Old testament saints were in McGee's observation, but I am sure it can be reconciled.

When I say - "disembodied" I am not referring to not being in the body of Christ, just that we will be in "spirit" status until we receive our glorified bodies. We probably can receive gifts of the Holy Spirit without having a physical body in heaven. Perhaps we receive wisdom and knowledge (as gifts of the Spirit) in that we know the answers to all the questions we had here on earth. I can also see having fruits of the Spirit - joy, peace, love, etc as that would seem to be what heaven is all about. I don't think it is necessary to have a "physical body" to receive the items mentioned above.

Hi again, John.

Yes, I did perceive that was what you meant after I was about halfway through the exerpt from McGee, but honestly I hadn't considered whether or not our bodies would be "spiritual" (Glorified?) or physical (such as Jesus portrayed on earth).

I wonder if it is a little of both, in that Jesus did not come through the door when he visited the apostles in the upper room; he was apparently able to pass through solid fixtures (like walls), and yet Thomas was able to place his hand into his wound in his side.

I have to think on this; it is a concept I had not onsidered.


The comments to this entry are closed.

Subscribe to receive daily blog posts via email:

  • Enter your Email:

June 2024

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29

Books for the Journey: