September 1

Job 40:1–42:17

All along Job wanted to meet God in “court,” to present his case. Job will soon discover it would have been better if he met Him at the throne of grace – God is about to put Job in his place!

Job 40:6–7 (NKJV) “Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said: 7 ‘Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me:’”

God asks Job, “Job, can you run the world? Are your arms as strong as Mine? Does your voice have My power? What’s your wrath like Job? Are you able to humble the proud as I do? Can you bring justice to the wicked ultimately laying them low in hidden darkness? I didn’t think so.” Job isn’t even able to handle two of God’s base creations – Behemoth and Leviathan. There are those who believe these to be the hippopotamus and the crocodile respectively. Others believe differently, myself included.

The Behemoth actually sounds like a dinosaur – a tail like a cedar – the first of the ways of God.

The Leviathan almost sounds like a fire breathing dragon/sea creature (Job 41:18-21). Yes, it is possible.

Whatever they are, Job is aware of them and he knows he can’t handle them.

Warren Wiersbe, “Job certainly would be afraid to fight these two creatures, but he was not afraid to challenge God, their Creator! Job could not control them, but he wanted to tell God what to do!”

At this point Job taps out.

Job 42:5–6 (NKJV) “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You. 6 Therefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

This man, who before all this happened, was blameless…had now grown in his relationship with the Lord. He saw himself in the awesome light of the LORD and was overwhelmed with awe and conviction.

For some reason I don’t think Job’s friends felt the same way. We don’t read their response to God. Perhaps they were shaking their heads at Job while God was talking, when they should have joined Job in the realm of repentance. So God turned to them and informed them of His wrath towards them (Job 42:7). Unless Job interceded for his “friends” they would have been judged.  The Lord vindicated Job:

Job 42:8b (NKJV) “…My servant Job shall pray for you. For I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.”

In the end, God blessed Job with twice as much as he had before. 

On a personal note, when my dad came to the LORD in his latter years, he held to this verse as one of his favorite passages:

Job 42:12a (NKJV) “Now the LORD blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning…”

God blessed the latter days of my dad…in fellowship with God.

In reading the account of Job we mustn’t conclude that God always heals and/or that God will double our riches if we just have faith. No, the primary lesson is that the righteous will suffer and it’s okay to pour your heart out to God. But – we must never lose faith, knowing that God is in the midst of it all – in complete control…somehow He will work it out for good.

Another important lessons to glean is to never give up on life. Job wanted to “check out,” but he didn’t. He held on to the Lord and God blessed him with another one hundred and forty years…he was able to see his children and grandchildren for another four generations.

2 Corinthians 5:12-21

In 2 Corinthians 5:12 Paul is hoping the Corinthians would back them up, that they would defend Paul and his ministry. There were other so called “leaders” who boasted about themselves superficially, but Paul’s ministry was genuine, it was from the heart. Maybe some thought he was crazy because of the way he served relentlessly and passionately, but it was the love of Christ that compelled him (the Greek word translated “compelled” means that God’s love cornered him and gave him no other option). That’s what happens when the love of God gets a hold of us.

Paul’s reasoning was simple – if Christ died for all, then all (in one sense) died with Him. The old man (the old Manny) should be dead, nailed to the cross, and the new man should rise. I should no longer live for myself, but for Christ who loves me…the Bible is clear:

2 Corinthians 5:15 (NKJV) “…and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.”

So, Paul concludes by saying he will no longer look at anyone apart from the eternal perspective (2 Corinthians 5:16). If people get saved they are a new creation (how awesome is that?). The old has passed away, and everything is brand new.

This is now Paul’s mission in life, he prays for God to use him to save souls. As a matter of fact, he believes he’s been given the “Ministry of Reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18)

This is one of my favorite verses in the Bible:

2 Corinthians 5:21 (NKJV) “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

God the Father treated Jesus as He lived our life (let that sink in for a moment…) He made Him who knew no sin (Jesus) to be sin for us (that’s when Jesus bore our sins on the cross).

God now treats us as if we lived Jesus’ life!

Wow – – – what an exchange!

Paul would therefore spend his life doing all that He could – pleading, preaching, and even begging people to be reconciled to God.

He’s not crazy, it’s perfect sanity to serve God and the people, with this type of reckless abandon.

Friend,  I pray, I plead, I ask and even beg…that you’d return to God today, if in any way, you find yourself at a distance.

Psalm 45:1-17

This Psalm was most likely written for a royal wedding and is clearly Messianic in nature, referring to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus is gracious (Psalm 45:2), He is the Mighty One (Psalm 45:3), He is majestic in battle, He is the King of kings (Psalm 45:5), and He is God (Psalm 45:7).

Psalm 45:6-7 is quoted in Hebrews 1:8-9 in reference to Jesus being greater than the angels (notice that Jesus is referred to as God).

The rest of this section points to the beauty of the bride desired by the King and the glory she will enjoy forever and ever. May she never look back with longing eyes towards her former family.

Proverbs 22:14

Proverbs 22:14 (NKJV) “The mouth of an immoral woman is a deep pit; he who is abhorred by the Lord will fall there.”

Charles Bridges, “Adultery is indeed a deep pit. It is easy to fall into but hard, next to impossible, to get out of. For this sin overwhelms the body, the mind, and the conscience. There is no more humbling proof of the total depravity of human nature than the fact that those affections that were originally given for the purest enjoyments of life can become the corrupt spring of such a defilement.”

If I kick against the goads, ignore all red-flags, and despise the Lord, He very well may lift His shield of protection…and there I will fall.

If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.

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