I found myself really having a desire to read through the book of Job. So I did. I split it up into two days and holy cow, what a rough season Job endured. I’ve read Job before but I’m not sure how anyone could read it and not be affected every time.
Job is relatable because he suffered in many of the same ways so many of us have or are right now. I’ve found that Job is, while it may appear to be a straightforward narrative, a very deep and complex book that needs a lot of attention to truly understand what is going on. Especially at the end when God responds to Job.
There are many important lessons that can be taken from Job but one stood out to me in particular. Job repents for behavior that I believe many of us (myself included) are guilty of.
Chapter 42 verses three and five find Job trembling after listening to God for four chapters worth of discourse. Throughout those four chapters God really does a number on Jobs theology.
In verse three Job states that he uttered things that he didn’t understand. In verse five Job states, “I had heard of you only by hearing of the ear, but now my spiritual eye sees you.”
I believe the lesson here is simple but profound. How often do we form our reality of God by what we only hear with our ears? So many times our impression of God is formed by what others teach us or tell us. We often fail to seek God for truth on our own.
It’s not that we shouldn’t learn from others but that we have a very real and significant responsibility to ask the Lord to confirm truth by what we find in scripture. I’ve been guilty of adopting theology that I didn’t seek out for myself. Instead I just believed what I was told.
Job built his life on a doctrine he received from his ears instead of his spirit. That led to an intense conflict that he was tormented by for 37 chapters.
Over the last year or two God has really pressed on my heart the importance of searching the scriptures for myself when it comes to my impression of God and His character. He has led me to consider the whole of the Biblical narrative when considering an interpretation. As a result I’ve taken everything I believe before scripture. Some things remained the same and some things changed.
I encourage you to do the same. Blessings,
What doctrine have you accepted without personal investigation?
Jesse and Kara Birkey