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May 5, 2024 - Job 9-10

Bildad has spoken to Job with an arrogance, words that, on the surface, are so full of truth:  If one seeks mercy from God, he will receive it; our days on earth are but a shadow; the hope of the godless shall perish; God will not reject a blameless man; etc.  But none of this addresses Job’s need.  Bildad is a well intentioned counselor to Job (I really believe he is); he’s also a worthless counselor.

 

Job responds by acknowledging the truth in Bildad’s words:  “Truly I know that it is so . . .” (9:1).  But Job needs someone other than Bildad to help him;  he needs someone who can speak with God on his behalf.  Job’s own experience is that he cannot seem to reach God on his own:  “Behold, he passes by me; and I see him not; he moves on, but I do not perceive him” (9:11).

 

Furthermore, Job cannot simply put out of mind his troubles:  “If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint, I will put off my sad face, and be of good cheer [it just doesn’t work]’” (9:27; the last,  a bit of paraphrase).  Oh, if Job could only have a face to face with God but, as Job rightly understands, “he is not a man, as I am, that I might answer him, that we should come to trial together.  There is no arbiter between us” (9:32).  Yet, Job continues to cry out to God:  “I will speak . . . I will say to God . . .”  So, the questions begin to pour forth from Job (ch. 10).  He seems to be at a complete loss, but he also seems to sense that if he is to find answers, he will find them with God, not with man.  That's a good start!  So, not just yet, but one day, Job will sing:

 

I will sing of my Redeemer

and his wondrous love to me;

on the cruel cross he suffered,

from the curse to set me free.

Sing, O sing of my Redeemer!

With his blood he purchased me;

on the cross he sealed my pardon,

paid the debt, and made me free.   (P. P. Bliss, 1876)

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