Job 6-12

After Eliphaz’s explanation and exhortation to Job, Job begins to justify his complaints. As he does so, we get to see the difficulties that he was undergoing! He complained because he felt intense discomfort *Job 6: 5. He even lost his appetite, vs 6.

He wished he would die, vs 8,9. And his hope of living has long ceased, vs 11, Job 7:7,8!

*He expected comfort from his friends, (even if they felt that he had strayed away from God), but even that was denied to him, vs 14- 21! He didn’t expect them to give him their fortune or even protect him from his enemy, vs 22,23, and was open to their honest rebuke, vs 24, although he was sure that his righteousness was intact, vs 29.

Months of futility and nights of sorrow were now his lot, Job 7: 3! His body was clothed with worms and scabs, vs 4! Even the little sleep that he tried to get was plagued with terrifying dreams and visions, vs 14.

He just wished that God would stopped scrutinizing him so closely, vs 17-20. And, if his punishment was because of some sin, then he adviced God to simply pardon him and let him be, vs 21, before he ceased to live anymore! Bildad was shocked to hear him talk about God in that manner and childed him for the same, *Job 8. He requested Job to realise that God would not have killed his children had they not sinned, vs 4, and yet, God would forgive Job, if he just repented honestly, vs 5,6.

He was assured that God would not reject a blameless man, or side evildoers, vs 20! Job explains how this incident that he faced had literally shattered the confidence that he formally had concerning God’s character, *Job 9! He explained that God was the omnipotent Creator of all, but one could not see Him or expect to question Him and get an immediate answer for the absurd things He seemed to be doing! This was so confusing to him, and so he even despised his very own life, vs 21! He felt that his friends didn’t seem to realise that if he was suffering because of his sin, then he would have immediately cleansed himself of his sin, instead of choosing to suffer such agony, vs 28-30!

This injustice meted out to him made him refuse to keep silent, and so he continued to complain against God, *Job 10: 1-3! He feels that God is so unfair, and pleads with God to leave him alone to die in peace, vs 15-20! Now Zophar, being shocked to hear Job’s arrogant words against God, Job 11, tries to make Job understand that just because God is silent it does not imply that Job has no sin, vs 5,6! So, he pleads with Job to stop being foolish and simply repent, so that God can forgive and restore him, vs 14,15,20.

Job confidently tell Zophar that what he just told him is nothing new, and something that Job knew very well, and he frankly acknowledges that he is in no way inferior to Zophar, *Job 12:3.

He marvels at their discernment which makes them assume that calamity comes only to sinners, while he sees it coming to him when he is actually righteous, vs 5,6! Then he goes on to list the various works of God which show that God is at the helm of things that take place here on the earth, and that God does as He pleases, vs 9-25! He says that even the animals, birds, fish and the earth itself know this to be true, vs 7-9!

In these chapters, we see an element of truth in what both, Job, as well as his friends said.

Yet, in this particular scenario, there is an element of error too, because they simply could not see the big picture as God saw it! Thus, when we come to crossroads in our life, concerning drawing conclusions on the things going on in our lives and the lives of those around us, may we be humble enough to realise and acknowledge that we don’t know what the whole picture actually looks like, and so let us be content to let God be God! For God alone can see everything clearly, and knows exactly why He permits the righteous to pass through certain phases of chastening and discipline.

And as they go through those seasons in faith, it will always end in promotion and blessing for them. Meanwhile, those who were quick to judge them during those times, without knowing the ‘inside story’, will eventually have to eat ‘humble pie’! Let him who has an ear, hear!

Rowena Thomas
Mumbai, India.