Friday August 24 2018

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Scripture: Job 2:1-13

Key verses: (9-10) Then his wife said to him, “Do you still persist in your integrity? Curse God, and die.” 10But he said to her, “You speak as any foolish woman would speak. Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

Reflection: Have you ever heard a sermon on Job? I’m curious to hear from anyone who has. Job is a book not often preached, likely because it has more questions than answers. That was a main take away from one seminary class, “Back to the Text – Job.” In the class, we acted out the book each week in different contexts culminating in a dramatic performance at the end of the semester.

In our final production, Job, his wife and his children were having their typical party with lots of celebration, as they did each evening and quite suddenly Job’s oxen, donkeys, camels, sheep, servants, his children, and his house (yes, everything, except his wife), were gone. Job’s wife said, “Curse God, and die!” This was an easy line for the actress to deliver after we visually saw all of these animals and people perish right in front of our eyes in the play. The actor Job said to his wife quizzically, “Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?” The narrator followed with, “In all this, Job did not sin with his lips.” These verses are the crux of the entire book of Job.

The passage could be read with Job as the hero. What did he do wrong? According to verse 10, Job did not sin with his lips. However, we know as Christians, we are all sinners (even Job!). We do sin with our lips, and our entire bodies. So the question becomes, what about Job’s heart? Did he sin with his heart? And, as 21st century humans, what’s in our hearts? Who do we worship? What do we praise?

Prayer: Dear God, let the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts, be acceptable to you, O Lord, our rock and our redeemer (Psalm 19:14).

Author: Amy Speas

[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].

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5 thoughts on “Friday August 24 2018

  1. Amy asks, ” So the question becomes, what about Job’s heart? Did he sin with his heart?” To find out, why not do what the title of your seminary class suggested, “Back to the Text”? Because the answer is provided in the first chapter of Job, even in the first verse: “There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job, and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil.”
    That’s the testimony of the author of Job; later but still in the first chapter, we hear from God: “And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?”
    In the face of those two witnesses, suggesting that Job HAD to be a sinner, at least in his heart, is to join with Job’s so-called friends, desperately seeking a comforting answer to The Mystery: Why do bad things happen to good people? The Book of Job will not allow that easy answer, unless we rewrite the text to suit our desires.
    Which is not uncommon. Even with the stories and words of Jesus.

  2. Amy, Thank you for reminding us all of the scripture of Job and all he was stripped of, but because of his Rock Solid Faith in God he was able make it to the other side and was an inspiration to all around him of what true faith is all about!!!

  3. Thank you, Amy. Good thoughts. Should we accept the good without the bad? Kind of like, you can’t have the rose without the thorn. And, the thorn, is what makes us reflect, grow, deepen and appreciate so much more the rose.

  4. Amy, my husband, Jim has preached from the book of Job. Also, Presbyterian Women, years ago, studied the book of Job as their circle Bible study. I can’t remember who wrote those lessons. I do remember teaching it and we found it very helpful.

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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