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Week 9

September 13th, 2017
Human Limitations
Job 40:3-24
Then Job replied to the LORD, “I am nothing—how could I ever find the answers? I will cover my mouth with my hand. I have said too much already. I have nothing more to say.”

Then the LORD answered Job from the whirlwind: “Brace yourself like a man, because I have some questions for you, and you must answer them.”

“Will you discredit my justice and condemn me just to prove you are right? Are you as strong as God? Can you thunder with a voice like his? All right, put on your glory and splendor, your honor and majesty. Give vent to your anger. Let it overflow against the proud. Humiliate the proud with a glance; walk on the wicked where they stand. Bury them in the dust. Imprison them in the world of the dead. Then even I would praise you, for your own strength would save you.” (Job 40:3-14)
The book of Job presents four views of suffering. Satan’s view is that people believe in God only when they are prospering and not suffering. Job’s three friends—Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar—believe that suffering is God’s judgment for sin. This may be true at times, but not always. Elihu’s view is that suffering is God’s way to teach, discipline, and refine. This is true, but it is an incomplete explanation. God’s view is that suffering can cause us to trust him for who he is, not what he does.

Throughout his time of suffering, Job longed to have an opportunity to plead his innocence before God. Here God appeared to Job and gave him that opportunity. But Job decided to remain quiet because he no longer had the need to speak. God had shown Job that, as a limited human being, he had neither the ability to judge the God who created the universe nor the right to ask for God’s reasons.

God’s actions do not depend on ours. He will do what he knows is best, regardless of what we think is fair. Nonetheless, God came to Job and showed Job his love and care.
Does your view of suffering match what the book of Job reveals about God and his view? If not, what objections do you still have? If so, how can you trust God more, not only in the hardships but also in the easy times?
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