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My thoughts on the Book of Job: First let me start out by saying that I have really been blessed through this study of Job. It has never been one of my favorite books of the Bible because I have always had trouble understanding how God would allow Satan to attack Job in such horrible ways. This time though the Lord opened new windows of understanding that have touched me deeply.

Satan did not pick out Job to test – God did! Satan said that he could make ANY man curse the Lord and the Lord said that Job would not curse him, and God was right! However, Job’s weakness, his flaw, surfaced during this testing. Job saw himself as being pious. He loved the Lord, he obeyed the laws of the Lord, and he loved the respect he received from others because of it. When his possessions, his family and his health were stripped from him, and when he lost the respect of others, he didn’t curse the Lord but instead wanted to present his case before God. In other words, he wanted to argue the case of his piousness with God – he wanted to convince God that he was unworthy of the trials because of his own goodness.

Only God is truly pious – only He is perfect and without flaw! Only God has the right to present His case of goodness to mankind. Mankind is so inferior to God that our goodness is only a flicker in the light of God’s greatness. We have no case to present before God. Job recognized the greatness and goodness of God, but Job also recognized what he perceived as his own greatness and goodness. He wanted to stand before God and tell God that he was too good to have to endure the trials he was facing. It was not until Job finally saw himself as being truly unworthy before God that he started repenting – and only after repenting did God restore all that he had lost and more!

It is easy for us today to see ourselves as being pious. We love Christ, we read the Bible, we pray, we attend church, we tithe in our own way, we tell others about Christ, we help others, we do what we consider is right for us to do as Christians. The danger is that we may start depending on our own piousness instead of God’s piousness for our salvation. We start thinking about what we are doing for God instead of realizing that it is really what God doing for us! We don’t need to present before God our case of what we are doing that is right because He knows what we are doing. What we need to present before God is our weaknesses, our flaws, our sinful nature, and beg for His forgiveness and strength to work through these.

God Bless!
Pat

Check out this website.
http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v25/i4/bishop.asp

Job 40-42:17

There were some things I saw in the Book of Job I was seeing being played out in front of me and I wanted to get not only come to grips with what I was seeing but I wanted to get some kind of understanding.

What I saw and experienced was not the “trials” of Job but the same type of character Job had in his three “friends.” When we first began reading this book, I questened the use of the word “friend” to describe Eliphaz from Teman, Bildad from Shuhah, and Zophar from Naamath (Job 2:11). Were they calling themselves friends of Job because they knew everything about him and still liked him, or where they just acquaintances? Job considered himself “tight” with God because of all his success and his wealth, he considered himself “righteous” but the righteousness he perceived he had was based on his “works” not on his relationship with the Righteous God.

Job said,
I have heard of thee (God) by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. (Job 42:5 KJV)

Job’s relationship with God was based on what he had heard not what he had experienced with God. Job’s three friends had a relationship with an image they had in their heads, they really didn’t know the man. When God speaks to Eliphaz after speaking to Job he tells Eliphaz that 1) he is angry with him and his “two friends,” He doesn’t say three friends which would include Job. Job may see these three guys as his friends, Job may call them friends but to God they are only friends amongst themselves. Why? Could a clue be found in the writing of Paul,

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14 KJV)

Could the key be really knowing the difference between a “believer” and an “unbeliever?’ Just some things for me to think about. We may call our group of people friends but does God see us as being friends?

I was reading from the NKJV & it doesn't call those animals hippopotamus & crocodile, in fact the animals described seem bigger & fiercer than those two. Now, I don't get into arguing about translations because I know so little - the NKJV is just what I happen to read - but as I was reading I was thinking "I'm glad I wasn't around to see those creatures!" In any case, it's awesome to think that God created them, as well as the spinning planets - Pluto now excluded (lol) - with his "fingers" and his word.

I believe that the behemoth and leviathan were actual dinosaurs talked about in Job. I take the bible literally and believe that the dinosaurs once roamed with humans, but died in the flood of Noah's time. There is no way that dinosaurs could have lived before God created man. Sin and death did not enter the world before Adam and Eve, it entered after them when they ate the forbidden fruit. Also, the word "dinosaur" didn't exist until it was coined in 1842 by British anatomist Sir Richard Owen.

I have read and studied the book of Job for a long time, but that is not to say I know all the answers, because I do not. I do believe,however, that, the behemoth is something similar to the big dinosaur. It is described far too large to be a hippo. The liviathan seems to be a "Dragon" type creature. After all, couldn't God have created a fire breathing creature, gone extinct because of the flood. Yes! That would have placed Job before the flood. Why not? That is as good as any other answer.
In Christ,
Tim A. Blankenship

What I like about this section of 2 Corinthians (chapter 3 - middle of 6, but especially here) is this link Paul makes between our transformation by the Spirit and our evangelism.

It is because of the reconciliation with God and the transformation since then that we seek to 'persuade others', but also the evidence of our lives provides powerful evidence to others that turning to Christ has a benefit to them. As someone who finds talking to non-believers about my faith difficult, I find this a great encouragement.

And I can relate to Paul's uncertainty about 'boasting' too: God has done some amazing things in my life which I want to tell people about, but it's sometimes hard to do so and give the glory to God, not to me.

Job 40-42:17

After the Lord had spoken the previous words to Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me the thing that is right, as My servant Job has. … And the Lord turned the captivity of Job and restored his fortunes, when he prayed for his friends; also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. [Deut. 30:1-3; Ps. 126:1, 2.] (Job 42:7,10) AMP)

Jesus tells us to pray for our enemies, but here God rebukes Job’s friends, tells them to go to Job and offer a burnt offering and to humble themselves so Job could pray for them. They were forced to seek the prayers of a man they thought was sinful. God has this way of reversing man’s standards. It is the greater that always blesses the lesser. They thought they were above Job but God said, “Not So!”

In my times of reading through this book, I’ve always thought that young Elihu most have had more wisdom than the other three because nowhere in this text is there recorded a rebuke by God of Elihu’s speech. I think I have changed my mind and am considering another perspective, Elihu may have just been a fool/mocker/scoffer, as defined by the book of Proverbs, not worthy of being given a response or answer.

So don't waste your time on a scoffer; all you'll get for your pains is abuse. But if you correct those who care about life, that's different--they'll love you for it! (Proverbs 9:8 MSG)

Don't bother talking sense to fools; they'll only poke fun at your words. (Proverbs 23:9 MSG)

II Corinthians 5:11-21
I needed to be reminded of verse 15 and I love the way it has been translated in the NLT, 15 He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live to please themselves. Instead, they will live to please Christ, who died and was raised for them.

For all those “who receive” I believe is the key here to this verse catching my attention. Jesus’ work on the Cross-was a gift. It wasn’t a bribe or exhortation or enticement it was a gift. A gift by its very name means that there is “No Strings Attached,” no payment of an in-kind gift required. A gift is something given to someone, just because … On the other end there is the art of receiving a gift. A gift given does not mean the person who has received the gift will use it. They may even say thank you but then put the gift in the closet.

There are many reasons why people don’t use or value a gift given. They may not know the value, they may despise it, they may recognize the value but that knowledge causes them to lock it up and never take it out due to fear.

The gift that Jesus has given us can never be stolen and was given to us to be used. Is your salvation hiding out in a closet somewhere?

For whoever has will be given more, but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him." (Mark 4:25 NET.)

How can you take from someone who doesn’t have? Either they don’t know they have it or they don’t know it’s value and allow someone to take it away.

There is a Praise Chorus that has this line,

This Joy I have the World Didn’t Give it and the World Can’t take it Away, but if we don’t know its value we can give it away.

Psalm 45:1-17
The forth verse reminds me of two repeating refrains in the 24th Psalm,


Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in. Who is this King of glory? The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah. (Psalms 24:8-10 KJVR)


Proverbs 22:14

Mike, this verse churns up another perspective for me. Yes, we need to watch our hearts for what ever is in our hearts will flow out of our mouths. However, the last half states another deep principle, our hearts, thus our mouths are controlled by our relationship with God. Those who are not walking in the Fear of the Lord, this verse states, will fall into the deep pit. It doesn’t say they might, it says they WILL.

But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me. So I gave them up unto their own hearts' lust: and they walked in their own counsels. Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways! I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries.
(Psalms 81:11-14 KJVR)

Grace and peace and know that God is still on the Throne no matter what it “appears” to look like.

Job 40 (NKJV)
1
Moreover the LORD answered Job, and said:
2
“Shall the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him? He who rebukes God, let him answer it.”
6
Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said:
7
“Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me:
8
“ Would you indeed annul My judgment? Would you condemn Me that you may be justified?

3
Then Job answered the LORD and said:
4
“ Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer You? I lay my hand over my mouth.
5
Once I have spoken, but I will not answer; yes, twice, but I will proceed no further.”

Job 42 (NKJV)
1
Then Job answered the LORD and said:
2
“I know that You can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.
3
You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
4
Listen, please, and let me speak; You said, ‘I will question you, and you shall answer Me.’
5
“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You.
6
Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

NOTE:
There are mysteries in life that—from a human perspective—will never be answered this side of heaven or hell.

Yet, God is good and God is in control. He is rich and abundant is Mercy and He greatly desires to pour out His abundant Mercy on those who will trust Him and obey Him through Grace. Yet, He will not leave the guilty unpunished—those who persist in doing wrong.

Exodus 34 (NKJV)
5
Now the LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD.
6
And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth,
7
keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation.”

Isaiah 30 (NIV)
18
Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; He rises to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!

Isaiah 30 (NKJV)
18
Therefore the LORD will wait, that He may be gracious to you; and therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for Him.

BECAUSE WE CAN KNOW AND TRUST GOD’S CHARACTER, we can trust the Loving Father when we don’t understand what the gracious Lord allows. Even when God “doesn’t seem to make sense”, we CAN AND NEED TO TRUST HIS CHARACTER!

We can trust God's Love!

2 Corinthians 5 (NKJV)
14
For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died;
15
and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
19
that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
~~~

Job had legitimate questions, as do you and I. We can choose and allow anger and pride to gain a foothold in us so that we question God—but He is not accountable to us! We are accountable to Him!

Hebrews 1 (NKJV)
8
But to the Son He says: “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
9
You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” [Psalm 45:6, 7]

This is why it is ALWAYS GOOD TO PRAISE GOD REGARDLESS OF circumstances and even if we do not have full and complete understanding.

It is not about us. God is always worthy. Consistent and persistent praise keeps our eyes on God. Praise places us in the position to be in submission to God and to receive from God so we are able to learn through difficult times when God is ready to teach us.

Isaiah 30 (NKJV)
15
For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel: “ In returning and rest you shall be saved;
In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.”

Praise and worship is the way that the Lord keeps our hearts pure in the midst of difficulties and when life is perplexing.

Psalm 50 (NKJV)
23
Whoever offers praise glorifies Me; and to him who orders his conduct aright I will show the salvation of God.”

What a truly awesome privilege it is to place ourselves before God and allow Him to teach us His wisdom in all stages of our lives—when life “makes sense to us and is all that it should be” or when we are perplexed about questions for which we do not have answers.

As we praise, we learn to love goodness and righteousness in all things, and we participate in the character of God the Father and God the Son.

In doing so, we learn to be like the Son of God, and God can anoint us with His Spirit of Holiness and Joy!

Hebrews 1 (NKJV)
9
You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” [Psalm 45:7]

Vance


Greetings and Blessings Mike! This is my "first-ever" post! I have been enjoying your "blogs" for a couple months now, having discovered it after being a "One Year Bible" (Tyndale) reader for the past 3-4 years. I am continually blessed by the harmony of the readings - so often a common thread runs through the readings, as unplanned as they are - God's "word spoken in due season" - how good and pleasant they are.
I was going to respond early on to the question about Behemoth and Leviathan being dinosaurs, but I'm glad to see someone already had responded. I'll offer these links to particular articles about them on the Answers in Genesis website...
http://www.answersingenesis.org/tj/v15/i2/behemoth.asp
http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v19/i4/seamonsters.asp

I encourage everyone to spend more time on the Answers in Genesis site to find answers for the questions he posts. The short answer to the question he struggles with "Can evolution and the Bible both be true" is an emphatic "No". The "evolution" that he claims Answers in Genesis is "forced to argue for" is sometimes called "microevolution" - or the adaptation over time in a species due to the LOSS of genetic information. This "natural selection" is not disputed by proponents of Biblical, young earth creationism rather is consistent with the "according to its kind" phrases in the 1st chapter of Genesis. Evolution by definition is the GAIN of genetic information which doesn't happen in nature. This is consistent with the 2nd Laws of Thermodynamics, which states that order is lost in a closed system. (hmmm - sounds a lot like what sin did to the perfect world God created!).
Lastly, I would encourage everyone to consider Darwin's Theory of Evolution in light of some not-so-well-known quotes of Darwin himself as he neared the end of his life - you may be shocked (and pleasantly surprised?!) by what you read!

Blessings Mike on your continued "ministry" through OYB!
Alan

Darwin, Charles Robert (February 12, 1809-April 19, 1882), was a British naturalist. He propounded the evolutionary theory of origins. In his work, Origin of Species, 1859, Charles Darwin wrote:

To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different amounts of light, and for
the correction of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.
May we not believe that a living optical instrument might thus be formed as superior to one of glass, as the works of the Creator are to those of man?
Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely
graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and serious objection which can be urged against the theory.
For I am well aware that scarcely a single point is discussed in this volume on which facts cannot be adduced, often apparently leading to conclusions
directly opposite to those at which I arrived.

There is a grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed by the Creator into a few forms or into one.

Reflecting on his work near the end of his life, Charles Darwin confessed:
I was a young man with unformed ideas. I threw out queries, suggestions, wondering all the time over everything; and to my astonishment the ideas
took like wildfire. People made a religion of them.

Being bedridden many months before his death, Darwin was often found reading. When one visitor asked what it was he was studying, he replied:
Hebrews, still Hebrews. "The Royal Book," I call it.

After speaking on "the holiness of God" and "the grandeur of this Book," Darwin is reported to have stated:
Christ Jesus and his salvation. Is not that the best theme?

WHEN DID GOD FORGIVE JOB?

Job repented, and God forgave - right? Maybe not. Let me explain.

Job repents, and God immediately turns to three friends and berates their speeches. They are experiancing God's mercy - for if God was as the friend's said then they should experiance justice (punishment). This must have been humbling to the three. It was done. Job prayed, and ---- what?

"..and the LORD accepted Job's prayer." NIV

This is unfortunate translation. The literal Hebrew is:

"..Jehovah doth accept the face of Job." (Young's Literal Translation)

This is when God forgave Job. Forget that the Hebrew word for "accept" can mean "forgive". The Hebrew idiom - "accept the face" means to forgive the person (Bullinger, The Companion Bible).

But if Job truly repented, and he seemed to, why did God not forgive him at verse 6?

I can only surmise that God knew Job's heart. Yes, he was sorrowful and full of repentance to God, but perhaps he was still feeling some bitterness towards his friends.

"Job is now being asked to love his enemies and pray for those who abused him. He is being asked to bless those who cursed him and not to return evil for evil. And he is still a very sick man! God has not yet reversed his misery. Why? What is the lesson here? Isn't it the same as Matthew 6:14?

"If you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."
http://www.soundofgrace.com/piper85/pn850023.htm

Or, maybe Job was not bitter, but God was making an object lesson "of the above" for the benefit of hearers or readers of the story. That being "right with God" should maifest itself in our outward behavior - displaying His characteristics. The idea we now have of "walking in the Spirit" or the "fruits" we bear after salvation.
======================================================
GOD REVEALS HIMSELF

In four chapters, 123 verses, and 77 questions - God does not once address Job's suffering. Job's suffering is a tangential part of this Bible Book.

God does reveal himself to mankind in regards to:
-Creation
-Providence (provisions for animals, man, and earth)
-Restraint of Evil

Maybe next year, I can delve into the scientific and structural truths embodied in the first two sets of rhetorical questions.

Some say - that "evil" is really bad now. Others say - You should see evil if God were not restraining it in the world.

The latter could be inferred from Job Ch.40, but maybe there is more there. The "behemoth/hippopotamus" and "leviathan/crocodile" get a lot of play (many verses) in Job. Is it because they are really special creatures? What is so important about them to deserve such space by the writer. What is God saying?

Chuck Missler suggests it is because the two represent something. He thinks the behemoth/hippo represents man's pride (flesh), and the leviathan/croc represents the "world" with Satan at its head.

Try it. Go back to the chapters and insert in those concepts in place of the animals. I was a little skeptical until I saw:

Is27:1
In that day,
the LORD will punish with his sword,
his fierce, great and powerful sword,
Leviathan the gliding serpent,
Leviathan the coiling serpent;
he will slay the monster of the sea.

Maybe the idea of man's pride (flesh) being so powerful, yet the maker can approach it and restrain it (carrying a sword implies with punishment????)

The world (and it seems to slowly dissolve to Satan) is so powerful, so terrifying, and yet God keeps it in check - until the time of its destruction "in that day".

Anyway - just throwing it out there as something to "chew on".
======================================================
SUFFERING

So suffering is not directly mentioned by God. There are reasons given for suffering in the NT.

- to learn obeidance (Heb5:8)
- to complete salvation (sanctification process) Heb2:10
-to develop your faith (1Peter6:7)
-to keep us from sin (1Peter4:1-2)
-to develop patience (James1:2-3)
-to be able to comfort others (2Cor1:3-4)
-to manifest the life of Jesus (2Cor4:10-11)
-to deliver us from pride (2Cor12:7-10)
-so that the works of God are made manifest in us (John 9:1-3)

Any others?

2Cor5:11-21

MINISTRY OF RECONCILIATION

Since Adam, God's plan has been about restoring His relationship with mankind.

-Foreshadowed in OT.
-Means provided through Christ in Gospels.
-Proclaimed in rest of NT.

What does this mean to us:
:...And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us."

This is why we are here on earth, and not spirited away upon salvation. We are to be the carriers of His message - in speech and through behavior.
======================================================
A CHILL PILL VERSE

"God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."

Some people will say that Christ did experiance sin - that he was not sinless based on this verse. (a supposed contradiction of the Bible).

I don't argue with these kind of propositions. I do point out that the translation could just as well be that Christ was made a "sin offering" or that He "bore" (carried) sin for us.

Since being 'made sin for us' is contradictory in my mind - I lean to the alternate translations.

Let the reader decide.

Very interesting thoughts regarding Leviathan and Behemoth. I'd have to say I don't think the Behemoth is a hippo as the Bible says it's tail is straight as a cedar. As for the Leviathan, I don't think that it is a crocodile as Croc's don't have falmes coming out of their mouths or smoke out of their nostrils. As for dinosaurs disappearing during the flood, I used to believe that, but don't any more. It says in the Bible that God took 2 of every animal, and not 2 of every animal minus the dinosuar. Every means every. I still have no idea, though very thought provoking.

:)

Behemoth that described in book of Job, is not looks like a hippo for me, it looks like a big-great and awesome animal.
It also the same with the leviathan ... God said that you cannot defeat the leviathan ... but God does it easily. (You can defeat the hippo and crocs with some spear or sword ... and that doesnt make God looks powerfull if He can tame those animals dont you ?)

I never know what it is...
We dont know when the events in book of Job happened. some scholars believed it happened before the Abraham called to go outside his hometown. May be Leviathan and Behemoth are kind of animals that extinct already. or ... may be they are a "spirit animals" ... just my opinion :)

Hippopotamus??? Are you kidding? A tail like a cedar tree resembles a hippo's?? Job 40+ is clearly describing a dinosaur. Several posts above are right on. Do check out Answersingenises.com

oh yes, i've heard lots about that chapter in Job referring to dinosaurs, like with his strength in his hips and a tail like a cedar. i forgot which kind, but that a dinosaur. sounds like also talking about a dragon. there is a lot of evidence that man and dinosaur dwelt together. cave drawings, footprints of man and dinosaur together, etc.

Awesome verses: Corith 5:17 "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new."

verse 21: "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."

Ohh, I'm an atari fan, but dont know that game! I know Q-bert! :P

My commentary regarding proverbs was good: The flattering seductions of such a woman lure men into a pit as God makes their sin its own punishment.

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