A friend in need

Job Sees The Light - Seventh in a series

Hover over the Scripture references to read the verses under discussion. The New International Version will be useful to compare.

Job 6:1-4 Eliphaz ended by encouraging Job to turn from his wrongs, and in so doing, to enjoy God’s blessings. Job responds, not by acknowledging sin, but by asking for understanding.

The eloquent Job makes no apologies, but only likens the heaviness of his anguish to the weight of all the sand of the oceans. To him it is no exaggeration.

Job 6:5-7 Brutes and dumb animals are quiet when their appetites are appeased, and whichever of these Job most resembles to his friends, he too would cease bellowing if he were not starved for the milk of human kindness and the bread of divine compassion.

God has rejected him and his friend has berated him. The words of Eliphaz are tasteless food, as repulsive as an egg white. Job’s appetite for understanding rages.

Job 6:8-12 His strength is gone. After all, he is only a man.

Job 6:13 But though he is decimated he is not without the ability to reason.

And now, let us remember Satan's goal in this story, that Job should curse God. (Job 1:11; 2:5) So far, destroying his home, herds, flocks and children did not move Job to this sin, nor did afflicting his body and marring his appearance. New tactics are needed when such others fail!

Satan can use emotional upheavals to draw us into baseless controversies with our family, friends and enemies. Then, he sets himself up as both coach and referee, urging each one to fight beyond his endurance and encouraging foul play. Round after round, we go round and round. Once in the ring, it is hard to get out without one party being defeated. Usually, Satan is the only one to win.

Job 6:14 Should a despairing man have the devotion of his friends even though he forsakes the fear of the Almighty? Job thinks so. True friends, he believes, should recognize that a despairing man needs support, not criticism.

And Job, would it also be fair to say that a glorious God should have the devotion of his subjects, even when his ways are inscrutable?

Job 6:15-20 Job is severely disappointed in his friends upon whom he had counted for understanding. In the walk of faith we learn to hope in God alone, the one who never disappoints.

Job 6:21-23 Job protests that he has not asked his friends to remit anything valuable for him, but only to support him. They would not give the little they could.

Those who are suffering— whether divorced, widowed, unemployed or bankrupted, often find their circle of friends suddenly depleted. That may be better than having friends who stay loyal but undermine their efforts to recover.

Job 6:24-30 Job is becoming defensive. Though he says Teach me, he does not feel his friends would have anything good to say and resents their meddling.

The defensive person is a mild schizophrenic, for he has two faces within: one with a haughty look, the other which betrays feelings of inferiority. His inner man is plagued with uncertainties about his worth and standing. If he were comfortable with himself, he would not be bothered by outside opinions.

Job’s anger at his friends could reveal a superiority complex. Those with great vanity and pride are the ones who take great offense at their detractors. But perhaps it is only that he resents being accused of wrongs he has not committed. He is being accused of lying, and he resents this insult to his integrity.

Job 6:28-29 NIV It is impossible that one’s integrity can be blackened by the disapproval of other people or improved by their esteem. Integrity has to do with whether our beliefs, words and actions are good and in harmony. What others think of us does not matter. A person with integrity may be the least poplar in a group situation.

Job 6:30 Job issues a challenge!

Get right with God!

Job Sees The Light - Sixth in a series

Hover over the Scripture references to read the verses under discussion

Job 5:1 Eliphaz continues. Certainly, the “saint” whom Eliphaz met in his sleep would not be a helpful “holy one.”

The search for an intermediary is an important theme of the book of Job. Job will long to find one, and he will prophesy about Jesus. The era before Christ was a time of leaning forward to understand. But then as now, the godly person must not entertain or listen to false Christs and demons.

Job 5:2-7 Eliphaz suggests Job may be envious and resentful like those who are foolish and silly. That type of person endangers his children through his attitudes. Yet, Job’s children are not in a predicament— they are dead, and not through any fault of Job. Has Eliphaz fathomed this? He seems to consign Job’s dilemma to ‘the way life is.’

Job 5:8 He advises petitioning the Lord. First he told Job to hope in his own goodness; next he surmised that Job had not really been very good; now he encourages him to appeal to God. What is the basis of the appeal? That Job has done much good? Yet has he not done much bad, as evidenced by his disastrous straits?

Though Job does not perceive anything in himself worthy of the extreme condemnation he has suffered, he will do as Eliphaz recommends. He will lay his case before the Lord and appeal to him on the basis of his own goodness. And up to the end, he will believe he can justify himself before the Lord. This is man’s great blindness— believing an impossible thing to the death.

Job 5:9-16 But nothing is impossible with God who can confound the wicked and preserve the weak.

Job 5:17-18 Eliphaz gets to the point! All the terrible things that have crushed Job were to punish him for wrongs he committed. Now, if he will accept God’s discipline, he will be blessed again.

Job 5:19-21 The Christian’s heart longs to believe that deliverance and protection will always be given to him. In the long run they are, but at times the sifting of saints is permitted. Is the sifting by means of false accusations worse than that from the loss of possessions? Perhaps so. James wrote: The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. When Satan rails against us through the mouth of a friend, no amount of answering or reasoning will satisfy his appetite for devouring us. Our responses only further confuse the &squo;discussion.‘ Only if we are right with God may we resist and rebuke the devil so that he is forced to exit.

Job 5:22-27 Eliphaz has proposed many ideas, but in this crowning advice he is true to his name, God is dispenser. God is a divine being, he suggests, who gives prizes in return for certain behaviors.

Satan wants us to believe that salvation is a mechanical prospect, but it is not. It is a matter of the heart.

Consolations for Overcomers, Part 2

The consolations of God - Eleventh in a series

Repeating the question from the previous post: Can we find our own church in the ‘seven candlesticks’ of the Revelation? Is there a word or message for you?

Be wholehearted in your faith

The church at Ephesus had many good points: the congregation had labored for Christ, demonstrated patience and tested the spirits to prevent doctrinal errors. But they had left their first love. The Lord seeks wholehearted devotion; he is a jealous God (Ex 34:14). For any who love God best of all, striving continually to put first His kingdom and righteousness, standing against temptations to wander, there will be great reward: To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God. (Rev 2:7)

Persevere

Smyrna was a special church among the seven; she had already entered into the season of tribulation. She was simply encouraged to be faithful unto death and would then receive a crown of life. He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. (Rev 2:11)

Be pure

Pergamos suffered by location in an area where Satan had his base of operations, yet her members had not denied their faith even when some in their number were martyred. However, some practiced divination rather than presenting their need for guidance in prayer to God, and some subscribed to the Nicolaitans' teachings that opposed purity and degraded the Christian witness. To the repentant and To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. (Rev 2:17) In the ancient courts of justice the accused were condemned by black pebbles and the acquitted by white. (ref)

Beware of the occult

Thyatira was commended for her charity, service, faith and zeal. However, they tolerated a prophetess, 'Jezebel,' who seduced God's children to fornicate and to eat what was sacrificed to idols. She had been given opportunity to repent but did not, so she would be punished and those who followed her would "be killed with death." (Rev 2:23) “And all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts; and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.” (vs 23) From this verse we understand that the Lord sees our inner selves and whether we resist temptation or entertain sin. Overcomers will receive GREAT rewards: Power over the nations — And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father And I will give him the morning star. (Rev 2:27-28) Jesus is the morning star. (Rev. 22:16)

Revive!

Sardis was famous for works but Jesus saw a dead church; he could see through the reputation. She was exhorted to strengthen what remained and was about to die, and to remember all that she had received, and to repent. Otherwise his return to her would be as a thief in the night. Yet, he saw that some had not "defiled their garments" so they would walk with him in white. (Rev 3:4) He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. (vs 5)

Wait, trust and obey

Philadelphia had kept Christ's word; she would be helped to serve, and those of the synagogue of Satan which claimed to be Jews would bow to her and know Christ loved this church. She had shown patience, waiting on the Lord in tribulation, so in turn He would keep her from temptation, that is, a severe time of testing that would come, to try all who dwell on the earth. Yet, she was warned to hold on to her careful obedience to God. Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. (Rev 3:12)

Be careful and wise; do not be deceived

Laodicea was a deceived church. She thought she was rich but was poor, wretched, blind, naked and miserable (Rev 3:17) and was advised to invest in purification by costly repentance and to earnestly seek God's righteousness. Christ would dine with any who heard his voice and opened the door to him. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. (Rev 3:21)

Attention Readers

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Learn more. The conscience cannot function without facts.


Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. -Mat 5:14

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