The book of Job can be laborious because of the many speeches that are given. It helps to try to get to know the characters involved in this part of the Story. Thus far, what would be the picture you would paint of God? Of Satan and his angels? Of Job? Of his wife? And what about Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar? As you listen to Job respond to his friends, what things do you learn about his God-processing in the midst of his suffering?
Job can be heavy – but is essential as we try to make sense of the conditions within and around our lives!
“Far be it from me that I should declare you right; Till I die I will not put away my integrity from me.
“I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go. My heart does not reproach any of my days.”
The onslaught of human philosophies is never-ending. It is almost IF we continue to talk or insist on the truth of our views – that somehow they must be true. Where do you think Job got his belief system? Why didn’t he give in?
“Oh that I were as in months gone by, As in the days when God watched over me;
When His lamp shone over my head, And by His light I walked through darkness;
As I was in the prime of my days, When the friendship of God was over my tent;
When the Almighty was yet with me, And my children were around me;
When my steps were bathed in butter, And the rock poured out for me streams of oil!”
It is hard to imagine feeling like a true friend of God and then have the bottom fall out. What emotions does this passage evoke in you?
“You lift me up to the wind and cause me to ride; And You dissolve me in a storm.
“For I know that You will bring me to death, and to the house of meeting for all living.”
What is Job’s view of the afterlife? This is important to keep in mind as the events of the book unfold. Job is learning from his suffering. His understanding of God seems to be expanding. Can you see it?
“Now Elihu had waited to speak to Job because they were years older than he.
And when Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of the three men his anger burned.”
It is weird that Elihu (the youngest) is not acknowledged by God at the end of the book. Why do you think that is? What was the source of Elihu’s anger?
“Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, “Who is this that darkens counsel, by words without knowledge? “Now gird up your loins like a man, And I will ask you, and you instruct Me!
“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding,
Who set its measurements? Since you know. Or who stretched the line on it?
“On what were its bases sunk? Or who laid its cornerstone,
When the morning stars sang together
And all the sons of God shouted for joy?”
Is God insulting Job? What things is He referring to and why do you think He chose the things He did?
Then the LORD said to Job, “Will the faultfinder contend with the Almighty?
Let him who reproves God answer it.” Then Job answered the LORD and said,
“Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth.
“Once I have spoken, and I will not answer; Even twice, and I will add nothing more.”
What does this reveal about what is going on inside of Job’s soul? What is the nature of this conflict?
“Then the LORD answered Job out of the storm and said, “Now gird up your loins like a man;
I will ask you, and you instruct Me. “Will you really annul My judgment?
Will you condemn Me that you may be justified?
“Or do you have an arm like God, And can you thunder with a voice like His?”
Why did God choose a storm? What is the possible metaphor here? What is at the core of God’s questions?
Intense my friend. Intense as it gets.