In my continued journey to really see God, see the world as He sees it, love, as He loves, and recognize what I don’t want to see in myself, I was impacted by the following verses in the Book of Job.
For Job has said, ‘I am in the right,
and God has taken away my right; in spite of my right I am counted a liar;
my wound is incurable, though I am without transgression.’ What man is like Job,
who drinks up scoffing like water, who travels in company with evildoers
and walks with wicked men? For he has said, ‘It profits a man nothing
that he should take delight in God.’ “Therefore, hear me, you men of understanding:
far be it from God that he should do wickedness, and from the Almighty that he should do wrong.
For according to the work of a man he will repay him, and according to his ways he will make it befall him. Job 34:5-11
The greater impact to me was from the fact that this was written long before any of the teachers of the law. There was no written Word to teach and guide. But there were men that God chose to speak the truth, difficult truth when needed.
Like Job, how often have I complained, even pouted, about something that didn’t go the way I thought it should? How often have I failed to recognize God’s authority in all things? How often have I failed to admit I don’t, I can’t, see all that God sees, and fail to accept His right to govern what He created?
The phrase, ‘who drinks up scoffing like water’ made me cringe. How often do we scoff at others and don’t consider it for what it is, judgment? Like many, I have been on the receiving end of scoffers; for what I believe, what I do, what I don’t do, and the choices I have made. But the reality is, I am no different, even though I try not to, I still scoff. And knowing God’s view of that pierces deeply.
I find it interesting the wording ‘travels in company with evildoers and walks with wicked men.’ I haven’t researched it, so this is my take, but perhaps evildoers actively work against God, and those who travel with them choose that path. And walking with wicked men means it is not a determined path, but something we fall into. I’m not saying I have it right, just that those are the thoughts that came to me. Either way, it means I need to be certain of my own walk, and that it is pleasing to the Lord.
…far be it from God that he should do wickedness, and from the Almighty that he should do wrong.
For according to the work of a man he will repay him, and according to his ways he will make it befall him.
Wickedness is not something God does, but He is just, and what I do, what any of us do, will determine our futures. God is a forgiving God, but first, we have to ask for forgiveness and mean it when we repent. God is patient. Look how long He has waited for those He loves to accept all He has to offer – a forever future with Him.
Faith is a matter of choice. It’s a growing process, but the first step of accepting by faith that Jesus died for you, was resurrected, and lives today, can be a guarantee of a wondrous ending to your journey.
2 Timothy 3:1-7 ESV
Godlessness in the Last Days
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.
Romans 10:9-10 ESV
because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
Ephesians 2:8 ESV
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,