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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Getting by with a little HOPE from my Friends

Job 8:11 thru Job 11:20

I hope there were many things that just leaped off the pages to you as they did me as we read more from Job today.

I want us to take a moment and contrast the words of Job’s friends Bildad and Zophar.

Here are some of the words of Bildad in Job 8 starting in verse 11.

Can papyrus reeds grow tall without a marsh? Can marsh grass flourish without water? While they are still flowering, not ready to be cut, they begin to wither more quickly than grass.

The same happens to all who forget God.

I am always forgetting things. If I don’t write something down, I will not remember it. But the things I do remember are things that are important to me. I don’t ever forget when my house payment is due, or that February 6th is my birthday (hint, hint).

So the fact that people forget God says that somehow He no longer was important to them.

The hopes of the godless evaporate.

I am struggling here because I want to dig out the word hope for you soooooo bad. Please, at some point take time to look up the word hope and study it out in the scriptures. Let me just say, Christ is our hope (1 Timothy 1:1) and those who forget God, lose Hope.

Picking up in verse 14…

Their confidence hangs by a thread. They are leaning on a spider’s web.

Those who forget God and lose hope have nothing strong to anchor their lives to. When one little issue arises they have nothing stable and strong to secure them.

They cling to their home for security, but it won’t last. They try to hold tight, but it will not endure.

Material things will not fill the void in our lives forever. Homes, cars, possessions are just hollow and empty.

The godless seem like a lush plant growing in the sunshine, its branches spreading across the garden. Its roots grow down through a pile of stones; it takes hold on a bed of rocks. But when it is uprooted, it’s as though it never existed!

The thought of leaving this earth and not making a mark, that is scary to me. I don’t ever want to have the look of God on my life. I don’t ever want to seem to have a relationship with God. The thought of that makes me want to lay my life before Him every day, every moment and say purge me out of me God so that only You remain.

Now, I want us to now look at Zophar’s response in Job 11 starting in verse 13.

If only you would prepare your heart and lift up your hands to him in prayer!

Remember, they are assuming Job has forgotten God and when Zophar is saying this to Job he is not being passive. He is trying to shake Job with his words.

Get rid of your sins, and leave all iniquity behind you.
Then your face will brighten with innocence. You will be strong and free of fear.

I love If-Then statements in the Word of God.  I would love to dig that one out for you too but just remember every action has consequences, good or bad. This action is a good action.

You will forget your misery; it will be like water flowing away.

Bildad spoke of what happens to those who forget God, but Zophar is speaking of what happens when we remember God; we forget our misery.

Your life will be brighter than the noonday. Even darkness will be as bright as morning.

Having hope will give you courage. You will be protected and rest in safety.

Ah, here’s the word hope again. Having Hope (Christ Jesus,Col 1:27), will give you courage, protection and rest.

I am sitting here breathing that in. I need courage. I need protection. I need rest.

I need Jesus.

You will lie down unafraid, and many will look to you for help.

Job is going through some stuff. I have a dear friend who went through some stuff too. She was so amazed how many women sought her out for advice and encouragement in their own lives. She never announced, Ok, I survived this, come to me and I’ll help you survive too.

We all watched her go through her stuff with hope. And people want hope. And she gave them her Hope.

I pray today when we come through our stuff like Job, that we will never forget God. But that our misery will be like water flowing away, and all that remains is...


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