BOOK BY BOOK BIBLE STUDY
BIBLE STUDY LESSON
For the week beginning Sunday September 15, 2013
WHO SAID LIFE WOULD BE FAIR?
(GOD cares about life being fair)
Job 15:5-20, 16:19-21, 19:5-27, & 21:7-9)
We must be careful to remember that all people suffer in the eyes of GOD, simply because all people sin in the eyes of GOD. Don’t look now, but, the greatest suffering in the world comes to those who insist on living without GOD. We often think or say that life is not fair, but we never stop to take into consideration that we look at life, through an unclean, bias mirror, that clearly and generally favors our own side, or position.
In the Greek, the word used for “world” is “Kosmos”, and it is from that word that we derive our English word “cosmos”. In the spiritual sense, it is “that complex intertwining of sinful desires, that shape our world of “lost” humanity”. When we live in this world, we are subject to its sinful fallout, sometimes due to our own sin, and sometimes due to the sins of others. However GOD uses our failures and imperfections to strengthen our character and move us closer to HIM, even while we are yet sinning in the world.
GOD purposes it to rain on both the “just”, and the “unjust” at the same time. It is possible for a person living without GOD to do “a right thing”, however, it is not possible for them to continue doing them on a regular basis. On the other hand, it is possible for a person who, for the most part, serves GOD, to do “a wrong thing”, however, it is not likely that they will continue to make bad decisions all the time. Likewise, there are evil people in the world who experience good fortune (Job 21:7-18), and there are good people in the world who experience bad fortunes in life.
The average person, oftentimes, does not grasp how their sin, not only affects their personal spiritual, emotional and physical life, but also, the spiritual, emotional, and physical lives of others. Every sin affects, not only the person who sins, but also, our sin always affects someone else, when all is said and done.
As human beings, because of our disobedience to GOD’s laws and instructions, we have long been destined to live in a world filled with death, sickness, and decay. However, thanks to the same merciful GOD that we perpetually disobey, man does not have to settle for “just living in the world”, we all have the option to choose to live, in and through, JESUS CHRIST, the “SAVIOR of the world”. However, when and if, we do choose to follow CHRIST, we are still not exempt from the trials and tests of everyday life.
In Job chapter 15, Eliphaz begins a second round of dialogue, this one filled with anger and blunt accusations of Job being irreverent towards GOD (Vs.1-6). He then launches a series of questions designed to shame Job and accuse him of being arrogant (Vs.7-13). In verses 21-35 Eliphaz shows us his own impersonal and grim view of GOD, as he presents a seemingly “Gnostic” opinion of how he feels GOD operates when dealing with HIS greatest creation. Here we see, through his hostility that, he views GOD, as a GOD who mechanically and impersonally metes out punishments, while totally lacking any love and compassion towards the sinner.
In Job 16, Job strikes back at his friends calling them “miserable comforters” who won’t ever stop their flow of foolish words. Job tells them that if they were in his place, he would be more concerned with comforting them, than criticizing them (Vs.1-6). Job tells them in verses 19-21 that, “Even now my WITNESS is in Heaven. My ADVOCATE is there on High. My friends scorn me, but I pour out my tears to GOD. Oh that someone would mediate between GOD and me, as a person mediates between friends” (NLT).
In Job chapter 19 verses 1-6, Job cries out in the pain of his humiliation, and we can almost sense that he is beginning to see the light as to what is really happening to him. In verses 5-6 we see what can be viewed as a “spiritual awakening”, or “spiritual breakthrough” in Job. Here Job states that, “You are trying to overcome me, using my humiliation as evidence of my sin” (A familiar trick of satan’s). But it is GOD WHO has wronged me (“tested me”). I cannot defend myself (I cannot defend myself before GOD – “For all are guilty and fall short of the glory of GOD”-Romans 3:23), for I am like a city under siege” (NLT).
In Job 19:25-27, Job gives us the earliest biblical mention of the “resurrection concept”, when he states, “As for me, I know that my redeemer lives, and that he will stand upon the earth in the last. And after my body has decayed, yet in my body I will see GOD! I will see HIM for myself. Yes, I will see HIM with my own eyes. And I am overwhelmed at the thought” (NLT).
By choosing and accepting GOD’s help, we don’t have to be overwhelmed by the effects of past sins, nor by the chances and changes of this life, nor by a fear of what will happen to us in the future. Now we can, at anytime we choose, enter into a right relationship with GOD, and begin looking beyond this world to HIM, being powered by the HOLY SPIRIT, through JESUS CHRIST.
Each of us has experienced what we deem as “unfairness” at times, which we cannot explain. In these times, a study of the book of Job offers insight, and stimulates hope. The difficulty in setting the time and place of the events of the Book of Job is irrelevant because its timeless and universal message transcends the ages. Job serves to remind us of that great truth, that, despite our lack of knowledge, and, of why certain misfortunes befall us, we can, and must, trust GOD in all that we aspire to do in life. The “life” that GOD created is always “just” and thereby “fair”, in a divine sense. What we think is fair, and what GOD knows is not, are sometimes, though incomprehensively to us, two entirely different things.
A Sunday school lesson by,
Larry D. Alexander
LARRY D. ALEXANDER- Official Website