Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More of the Same

I'm sure that Job found the arguments of his friends quite tiresome by the time his third friend spoke. (They each have several speeches left) I have found them quite tiresome myself. Here is a sample of what Zophar says to Job in chapter 11:

14 if you put away the sin that is in your hand
and allow no evil to dwell in your tent,
15 then you will lift up your face without shame;
you will stand firm and without fear.
16 You will surely forget your trouble,
recalling it only as waters gone by.
17 Life will be brighter than noonday,
and darkness will become like morning.
18 You will be secure, because there is hope;
you will look about you and take your rest in safety.
19 You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid,
and many will court your favor.

How many troubled souls are bombarded with the admonition to just get right with God so that you're troubles may be lifted. Depression, family strife, troubles at work, we are so quick to blame these misfortunes on a lack of faith or a strong relationship with God. When we put forth these arguments, it's just more of the same. Like the third friend Zophar we are simply telling the Job's of this world that you must not be the right kind of Christian if you're suffering so much because God just wouldn't let that happen.

Prosperity theology is alluring; the idea that a little faith will bring us all the worldly happiness that God wants for us anyway. But even Christ promised- "in this world you WILL have trouble." (John 16:33) He tells us to take heart because he has overcome this world.

Can Job stand firm and take heart that God is truly good?

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