Today’s reading: Job 8-10.
Don’t you hate false logic? Sometimes it’s so hard to see. It can fool you. Job’s friend, Bildad, used some false logic that’s very easy to see through, however. It went like this. “God punishes sinners. Suffering is a sign of God’s punishment. Job, you are suffering. Therefore, you are a sinner.” Bildad’s logic ignored the cases where suffering happens for reasons other than punishment. Not all sufferers are sinners.
Job had no trouble seeing Bildad’s error, but he struggled to plead his case before God. He realized, correctly, that there were many obstacles in his way.
- God is much more wise and more powerful in every way.
- It is impossible to resist God.
- It is impossible to see God.
- No one can say to him, “What are you doing?”
- No one can argue with his justice.
- The human mouth cannot come up with the words to argue with God.
In desperation Job cries out for another way. If he cannot speak with God, isn’t there someone who can speak on his behalf? A go-between, an advocate, an arbitrator?
“He is not a man like me that I might answer him, that we might confront each other in court. If only there were someone to arbitrate between us, to lay his hand upon us both, someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more. Then I would speak up without fear of him, but as it now stands with me, I cannot.” Job 9:32-35
The chapters to come will show that Job held on to this idea and by faith accepted that it was true. We know he was looking for a savior who was both God and man. The writer of Hebrews understood how well Jesus fulfilled this role.
For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. Hebrews 2:17-18
I like the illustration of the man who found sparrows on his doorstep on the coldest winter night. He tried to coax them into his warm barn, but to no avail. He said to himself, “If only I could be a sparrow for a moment and tell them of the safety of the barn.” So Jesus became a man to tell us of the way to eternal safety. Job longed to see him, and by faith did see him (Job 19:25).