I have a hard time imagining the pain and suffering Job went through. He lost much of his family, his health, and most his wealth. He was tortured emotionally and physically but was never able to make sense of it spiritually. Although Job was “blameless and upright,” and “feared God and shunned evil (1:1),” his friends thought he must have done something wrong to deserve such painful circumstances and urged him to confess his sin so his suffering would cease. His wife was no help either. She told Job to “Curse God and die!”
There was no good answer to the question of why Job was suffering, at least from a human perspective. Yet Job refused to accuse God of wrongdoing. He didn’t give up on God either saying at one time, “Though he may slay me, yet will I hope in him (13:15).” Job knew that though the suffering he was experiencing in this life might not end, there was something better beyond the horizon of death. He said, “I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in the flesh I will see God (19:25-26).” Job’s hope in God and what is to come was undiminished even though he was suffering and could not answer the question, “Why?”
There are many followers of Jesus among us today who like Job are suffering because of the loss of family members, because off financial setbacks, or because of health issues. Many of them have little understanding of why this is so. My prayer for them as well as for others facing difficulties is that their hope in Jesus and in the life that is to come will be undiminished no matter how difficult their current circumstances are.
In what ways are you facing struggles that challenge your faith or your hope?
What do you need to remember about God and the world that is to come so that your hope remains undiminished?
The topic of this week’s devotionals, contributed by Dick Lentz the from Neon flock at Calvary, is Hope. Dick has a blog at AsISeeItToday.com and can be reached at *protected email*.