How often have you felt alone? Abandoned by friends, frustrated by circumstances and feeling defeated. It is in these moments that God can feel distant. The reality is that God is always there. Sometimes it takes us to be in the right place for Him to speak.
Job had been through more than most of us will ever have to face. His story is one of pain, frustration and suffering. And yet, at his darkest moment, God dramatically speaks. God challenges Job’s thoughts, puts him in his place, then picks him up and holds him in his arms.
No matter how dark and hopeless our lives may seem, no matter how alone we may feel, God is there. Waiting for us to be in the place to be open to Him. Ask Him to speak to you, He will. Don’t be alone in the ashes, instead be held tightly in the arms of God. God always writes the last chapter…
Job 38 – Alone in the Ashes, God Speaks to Job
The setting: Job sits alone in the ashes of his life. His family gone, his possessions destroyed his friends condemning him. A warm wind blows softly as the dust swirls in the air. Far off in the distance thunder is heard. As the sound grows louder and the lighting begins to strike, Job feels a presence. Calmly and powerfully, God moves closer. Finally, out of the storm, God spoke to Job.
Key Point: Faith in God is far more important than a desire for understanding.
“O Lord my God,
When I in awesome wonder consider all, The works Thy Hand hath made,
I see the stars, I hear the mighty thunder, Thy power throughout The universe displayed.”
38:1 – Why did God choose to speak now? Job was broken, he was exactly where he needed to be. God had his attention. God spoke at exactly the right time and exactly the right place.
The mark of a good teacher is that He begins where a student has left off. (parables)
Speak to where people live.
38:2 – Words without wisdom… The sin of speaking without knowledge
Proverbs 1:7 – The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.
Proverbs 2:6 – For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding
Proverbs 2:12 – Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse
Proverbs 3:13 – Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding
Proverbs 4:7 – Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.
Proverbs 18:4 – The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters, but the fountain of wisdom is a bubbling brook.
James 1:5 –“ If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.”
77 Questions 38:3 -– “Brace yourself”
Can you explain My creation? 38: 4- 38
Pacific Ocean 35,810 Voyager 2 12 years, 4.4 Billion miles to pass w/in 3000 miles of Neptune
Can you oversee My creation? 38:39- 39:30
Job’s response, God rolls on… 40 & 41 – Four views of Suffering
Brace Yourself “This will hurt me more than you…”
40:6 to 42:6 God continues His speech to Job. Job listens intently, recognizing his flaws.
40:6 – 40:15 – In a storm vs. out of a storm… Brace Yourself
“I know God, in fact I am God. Sir, you are no god!”
16-24 – THE HIPPOPOTAMUS by Ogden Nash
Behold the hippopotamus!
We laugh at how he looks to us,
And yet in moments dank and grim
I wonder how we look to him.
Peace, peace, thou hippopotamus!
We really look all right to us.
As you no doubt delight the eye
Of other hippopotami.
41:1-11 – Leviathan, 11 headed sea monster – most likely a crocodile
Are you a Croc Hunter? Snake Hunter?
12-34 – Nothing on earth is his equal. Foolish for us to think we can stand up to GOD
Can God make a rock so big He can’t lift it? AXIOMATIC!
42:1-4 – Job humbles himself. Job had questioned God’s integrity and justice.
Job was quoting God’s earlier questions (38:3) True faith begins in humility.
Foundations of Faith
5,6 – Don’t wait until you must hear God’s wrath.
Don’t wait until your “eyes have seen”.
Don’t wait until you “despise yourself”
Don’t wait until you are alone in the Ashes…
Repent. Now. Have Faith.
New concept of God. New attitude. New relationship. Restored.
Steps to Repentance:
· See yourself for what you are
· Despise the way you are
· Have a desire to change
· Recognize that God is in charge
· Quit trusting yourself and trust God
· Ask for forgiveness
Fighting the losing battle… 1 John 1:6,7
6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; 7 but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.
Chapter 42 – The Conclusion. Complete Restoration and a New Relationship.
Job is Restored
42:7 to the end Recap Study: 15 weeks
Reread 42:1-6 – Job recognizes God’s sovereignty, confesses and repents in the ashes. God has accomplished His purpose in the life of Job. Matthew 19:26
42:7 – God was not happy with these guys who spoke. They were WRONG! They were judging Job without knowing what God was doing. 6 TIMES Job is called “My servant”
8-9 – How do you think God felt about his three friends? He forgave them and prayed for them
10-11 – AFTER… would the message of the book have changed if Job wasn’t restored?
It may not come in this life, but it will come. Luke 18:29,0
12-16 – Investments paid off! Children were doubled because he still had the first ten
Keren-Happuch (eye paint), Keziah (cinnamon) Jemimah (dove) Beauty was valued.
17 – “Old and full of years” The way Abraham, Issac and David died. A blessing
Happily ever after? Not always but…. Then, why do we suffer?
· Punishment for sin? Repent
· Satan attacking me? Call of God for strength
· Being prepared for special situation or service? Look at the big picture.
· Being tested? Accept help and trust God.
· Suffering from natural consequences that aren’t your fault? There is an end in sight.
· Some unknown reason? Proclaim the power of God and have FAITH!
GOD ALWAYS WRITES THE LAST CHAPTER