When I read the Book of Job, it is easy for me to think that Job was badly treated by God. He lost all his possessions, he lost his family, and he lost his good health. That is bad, isn’t it? He didn’t deserve it, did he?
We need to step back a little bit and reassess what we might think that we are reading. Job’s friends tell him repeatedly that he must have sinned greatly for God to punish him in the way he has.
What is really humbling, and the point that I want you to understand, is what Job had to say about it. “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I shall return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD” (Job 1:21).
But Job wanted answers, and he wanted them from God. “Let the Almighty answer me,” he says in Job 31:35. When God does speak, it is not to answer Job, but to question him.
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?” (Job 38:4 (ESV)).
One commentator I read recently said that God highlighted the sheer insignificance of Job when compared to the creation. There is so much more to it than that.
I have heard people say, “God will not give you more to cope with than you can bear.” I would love to see the scripture for that, because I cannot find it. Tell Job that. He was not able to bear it. I have had things during my life that I have not been able to cope with, or withstand. Regularly, people I know are unable to bear with, or withstand, grief, hardship, and any number of things that impact their lives. We cannot cope. Sometimes, we cannot handle things, and we are totally incapable of withstanding what life throws at us.
Jesus said, “Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). In 1 Peter 5:6-7, these words, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”
We do not have the mind of God, but he cares for us. He cares for us in all our troubles, and when we cannot bear our burdens, He will, because He cares for us.
Colin R. Vine