We have now come to the conclusion of the book of Job. We find a man who is not what he once was. He is still Job, but he is a new Job, a better Job.
Job has always known that God could do all things and that no purpose of the Lord could be stopped. But now he knows as one who has discovered that he does not understand as he once thought he did.
Job carefully listened to God. God said in 38:1, “Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?” The Lord was clearly referring to Job. He was the one who spoke words without knowledge, and now he admits that he talked at length about things that he did not understand, things too wonderful for him.
Job has heard, and he has seen. He has been appropriately humbled. “I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”
Repentance is a good gift of God. It is better than the answers that we seek when we ask God, “Why?” Repentance is not only the cessation of some evil action or the resolve to take up some new duty. It is a change in orientation that rediscovers this truth: “God is God, and I am not.” It is the restoration of proper subservience of an inferior to the ultimate Superior. All of the other important changes in our behavior flow from this humility.
A repentant man surrenders to God as his Master. He gives himself to the Lord as a slave, but he finds himself to be a son. The greatest suffering servant of God was also His greatest Son. He came not to serve, but to be served, and to give His life as a ransom for many. Now He is exalted high in the heavens as the eternal Son of God and the King of the Kingdom.
God wounds His sons only to bring about a far better healing than could have been accomplished without the surgery. The Lord speaks glowingly now about His great son Job. When he corrects Job’s friends for their error, He remarks that Job spoke rightly of God. Amazing!
The next course for repentant Job is to turn his pain into love by the grace of God and in accord with His command. Job prays for his friends. They have not spoken rightly of God. Job prays for them and they are forgiven. Not only is there prayer, but there is sacrifice. When the final Suffering Servant comes, there is prayer for us and there is sacrifice, not of bulls and rams, but of Himself. By His death we are granted life.
New life is a great gift. God can give new life to a man who has suffered. We experience the heavenly gift in our spirits that have been made alive, but this is only a down-payment of what will surely come. Look for it as the holy men of old looked for a city that only God could make. Look to Jesus, the righteous and victorious Warrior. Look for life where He is, and receive whatever tokens of that life that He kindly bestows upon you even now.
Not everyone gets a second chance under the sun. God bestows His gifts according to His own wisdom. We need to receive what He provides with thanksgiving. Job is blessed with a new family and an even better life. Have you found the sympathy of others in trial? It is God’s kindness, but a better grace is the steadfast love that He has worked in you through suffering. Jesus Christ is His best gift to you. Choose that better portion, and let your heart be thankful.
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
Lord, You can do all things. No purpose of Yours can be thwarted. We have heard of You, but one day we will see You. Teach us to speak of You what is right. Thank You for our Mediator. He is far above us in righteousness. Bless our latter days more than our beginning. What may seem to be lacking in the present age will surely be given to Your servants in the age to come. Precious in Your sight is the death of Your saints. We believe Your promises and we worship You.