There is provocation in the air. Questions. Doubts. Assumptions. We are still exploring the murky arena of the Job drama….
And as the story goes, God and Job stand accused by cosmic enemies, personal friends and family members. In the typical fashion of human ignorance, Job’s wife and friends are prepared to chime in with all of the Adversaries suggestion. “Then his wife said to him, ‘Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die.’” Job 2:9. Ah, we faithless humans! God is now pictured as the Adversary. “Then Zophar the Naamathite answered, ‘...that God would speak and open his lips to you, and that he would tell you the secrets of wisdom! For he is manifold in understanding. Know then that God exacts of you less than your guilt deserves,” Job 11:1-6. Woe to us! Job, the friend of God, has become the accused, deserving of his condemnation.
A bit of rearrangement here. A little adjustment there. Merely a handful of catastrophic circumstances… .and the human race erupts with judgment and verdict. Opinions fly through the arenas of time and space at light speed. Hearts have been calculated and condemned. Fates have been decided. Everything thinks they know something.
And Job, yes faithful Job, is certain of nothing. He shivers and shakes in the center of human judgments reciting the soliloquy of the accused. A man who cannot speak for his own character. A man fighting to see whether or not his condemnation is true. A man in question, waiting for an answer…
“My spirit is broken; my days are extinct; the graveyard is ready for me. Surely there are mockers about me. And my eye dwells on their provocation. Lay down a pledge for me with yourself; who is there who will put up security for me? Since you have closed their hearts to understanding, therefore you will not let them triumph. He who informs against his friends to get a share of their property – the eyes of his children will fail. He has made me a byword of the peoples, and I am one before whom men spit. My eye has grown dim from vexation, and all my members are like a shadow. The upright are appalled at this, and the innocent stirs himself up against the godless. Yet the righteous holds to his way, and he who has clean hands grows stronger and stronger. But you, come on again, all of you, and I shall not find a wise man among you. My days are past; my plans are broken off, the desires of my heart. They make might into day; ‘The light’ they say, ‘is near to the darkness.’ If I hope for Sheol as my house, if I make my house, if I make my bed in darkness, if I say to the pit, ‘You are my father,’ and to the worm, ‘My mother’ or ‘My sister,’ where then is my hope? Who will see my hope? Will it go down to the bars of Sheol? Shall we descend together into the dust?” Job 17. The divisions of day and night are obscured. Grey. All has gone grey. Where do the innocent and upright end and where is the beginning of the grave? Perhaps they are the same. Perhaps the godly live in the hopeless Sheol.
To be continued….