Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Bible Study Notes in Job- Chapter 33

Job 33

-Elihu makes his speech now beseeching Job and the rest of the audience to listen carefully. Elihu claims that his words are from an upright heart and with total sincerity. He acknowledges the God of the Universe who has made him and given him life. He challenges Job to refute him if he can. He claims that he belongs to God like the one is talking to, formed out of the clay. Elihu tries to build rapport by stating that Job should not fear him, nor let his pressure weigh too heavily on him (Job 33:1-7).

-Elihu has listened carefully to everything that Job has conveyed up to this point. Elihu asserts that Job has maintained that he is pure, without transgression, and innocent with no guilt. He, and perhaps wrongly here, rebukes Job for saying that God had invented pretexts against him and counted him as His enemy putting his feet in stocks and watching all his paths. But, then he declares an absolute truth at the end of this comment when he states, “God is greater than man (Job 33:8-12).”

-Elihu now questions Job on why he is complaining against the LORD because He had yet to give an account for all His doings. The young man notices, “Indeed God speaks once, or twice, yet no one notices it.” He relates some forms of God’s Voice through dreams and visions during their slumber, when He opens the ears of men and seals their instruction. He even postulates the reasoning for God’s announcements to mankind, “That He may turn man aside from his conduct, and keep man from pride. He keeps his soul from the pit, and his life from passing over into Sheol (Job 33:13-18).”

-Next, Elihu offers the fact that God can speak to man through suffering. Through chastening with pain on his sick bed and unceasing complaint in his bones bringing a person to the end of themselves to the point of loss of appetite and wasting away from malnutrition, God is at work to fulfill a mediation for him through an angel. “One out of a thousand, to remind a man what is right for him,” is the messenger of mercy drawing one to a place of grace and deliverance from the pit. Elihu even uses the word “ransom” in true biblical form to describe this wanted transformation by Deity through pain and suffering (Matthew 20:28, Mark 10:45, 1 Timothy 2:6). The end result? A man’s flesh, and inner man I might add (2 Corinthians 4:16), can become fresher than in youth. He can return to youthful vigor. He can pray to God, and the Almighty will accept him, “that he may see His face with joy.” The redeemed will sing to men in humility and say, “I have sinned and perverted what is right and it is not proper for me.” God, Elihu rightly maintains, can rescue the soul of mankind from the pit of destruction and make his life see light (Acts 26:18). In fact, this young man claims that God does this often with men, meaning this redemption process and the illumination of life. He begs Job to, “Pay attention,” and “Listen to me.” He wants his elder to keep silent and continue to let him speak. At the end, he would have ample opportunity to answer. Elihu kindly states that his reasons for this monolog is to “justify” the aching Job and “teach” him wisdom (Job 33:19-33).  

-*Application* What a powerful testimony to the redeeming work of Christ delivered by this young man in this Old Testament context. We can be clothed in His righteousness by faith and be given His Light for salvation and Godly living (John 8:12, Galatians 3:27). It is nothing that we deserve and/or have earned (Ephesians 2:8-9). It is all by His grace given to us through suffering (Hebrews 2:9; 13:12). When we suffer, we are becoming more and more like Christ. Therefore, let us conform to His image while we go through the hardships of this earthly life (Romans 8:29).

Verses to Memorize: Job 33:14, 28

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