Job is lamenting the present and seems to be wondering about the future, and asks,
“For there is hope for a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that its shoots will not cease. Though its root grow old in the earth, and its stump die in the soil, yet at the scent of water it will bud and put out branches like a young plant. But a man dies and is laid low; man breathes his last, and where is he? As waters fail from a lake and a river wastes away and dries up, so a man lies down and rises not again; till the heavens are no more he will not awake or be roused out of his sleep.
It looks like Job is wondering, what is going to happen to me? What happens when I die?
As human beings we must all endure a physical death. This is one thing that unites every single person ever to set foot on Earth.
Our bodies were not made to live eternally in their current state, evidenced by the fact there are no double-centurians in our midst. Do you know anyone who is 200 years old? The oldest recorded and fully authenticated human life in modern times was one hundred and twenty two years, one hundred and sixty four days. All this to say, Job’s question here is something that will certainly affect every one of us, and is consequently something of the utmost importance to us.
The Word is so clear about what happens for the believer. In as few words as possible, for those that have put hope, faith, and trust in Jesus, physical death brings ‘immediate transition…into the presence of Christ‘. As a believer in Jesus, your earthly death means closing your eyes here and opening them in the presence of your Redeemer.
There is no uncertainty for the believer, no apprehension about destination, no fear of the future.
For a more in-depth look at this with many Scriptural references, head over to GoodLion;
Job continues to speak and through his words answers a question that most of us have asked or been asked; is God good?
“Let me have silence, and I will speak, and let come on me what may. Why should I take my flesh in my teeth and put my life in my hand? Though he slay me, I will hope in him; yet I will argue my ways to his face.
Even though he didn’t understand what was going on, he trusts God (I will hope in Him). Have you ever been in a situation like that? Circumstances that you don’t understand, a situation that you cannot make sense of, when the only thing left to do is trust wholeheartedly in God. Job knew that even though he slay me, even though the terrible things happening to him were not outside of God’s permission or declaration, that trusting and hoping in Him were still the right things to do.
Even though blameless and upright (1.1, 8) Job was going through a set of circumstances that would break us all.
Even though he was without blame and suffering, he still did not curse God (1.22, 2.10).
Even though he was on the precipice of death (3.20-26), he hoped in and trusted God.
Even though he slay me, I will hope in him.
Reading this, it is hard to look past the Christ-centred type that Job is. The truer, better Job, think about Jesus;
A blameless and upright man charged and punished as if He had sinned – Isaiah 53.6, 2 Corinthians 5.21
A man who throughout His ordeal, did not curse God. On the contrary, He sought forgiveness for those involved – Luke 23.34
A man who, on the precipice of death, trusted God – Luke 23.46
A man who, even though slain, brings eternal hope – 1 Thessalonians 1.3, John 4.13-14
Is God good? Job knew that He is. For you and me, despite what is going on around us, le us forever say yes, yes He is.
11 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation)12 he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.13 For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh,14 how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify ourconscience from dead works to serve the living God.
15 Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred that redeems them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant.[h]16 For where a will is involved, the death of the one who made it must be established.17 For a will takes effect only at death, since it is not in force as long as the one who made it is alive.18 Therefore not even the first covenant was inaugurated without blood.19 For when every commandment of the law had been declared by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people,20 saying, “This is the blood of the covenant that God commanded for you.”21 And in the same way he sprinkled with the blood both the tent and all the vessels used in worship.22 Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.
23 Thus it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these rites, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.24 For Christ has entered, not into holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true things, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.25 Nor was it to offer himself repeatedly, as the high priest enters the holy places every year with blood not his own,26 for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world. But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.
To the original readers/hearers this passage would have meant that
The blood of Jesus is far greater than anything you have been offering before.
The blood of Jesus can cleanse you on the deepest level.
The blood of Jesus offers true and eternal redemption.
The blood of Jesus offers provision and protection for your life.
The blood of Jesus is enough.
Once, for all.
What did the blood of Jesus do for me, now, today?
It secured you an eternal redemption, an eternal relationship with God, an eternal life, an eternal forgiveness of sins.
We say ‘it’s in the blood’ but why? How?
It is His provision, His protection, His blood that covers your sin.
Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin (Leviticus 17.11), and His is perfect, sinless, spotless, and supreme. His provision is eternal and heavenly, His protection is against sin past, present, and future.
Jesus gave a greater sacrifice, died a greater death, and shed His greater blood for you to have eternal redemption.
What do we do with this then?
Understand why the blood of Jesus is greater.
Live as if Jesus shed His blood for you.
Live as those bought for a price, the price of greater blood, a greater death, and a greater sacrifice.
Live as those who are eagerly waiting for Him.
This devotional was taken from a message given at Saar Fellowship, more can be found here!
This song by All Sons & Daughters has some deep truths in it for us. Let’s just look at the chorus.
‘Cause I am a sinner If it’s not one thing it’s another Caught up in words Tangled in lies But You are a Savior And You take brokenness aside And make it beautiful Beautiful
Often the point we all get to before we realise that we are in dire need of a Saviour is to realise that I am a sinner. We know that we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3.23). We also know that God is a God of justice, a holy God, and must act on sin (Habakkuk 1.13). All this point to the fact that as sinners we are deserving of judgement. The Bible tells us that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6.23).
We often find ourselves caught up in words and tangled in lies. Maybe it’s words spoken in anger to our children. Maybe it’s words said in frustration to our spouse. Maybe it’s bending the truth into a lie to make ourselves look better at work. Maybe we lie to ourselves and say that ‘just once‘ is ok, ‘this time I’ll do it, next time I won’t‘. Whatever it is, we all fall short of the glory of God, and if it’s not one thing it’s another.
All this may get us down, all this may leave us feeling hopeless. Is our conclusion going to be Romans 6.23? But, as sinful as we are, Jesus is even more righteous. As deceiving as we are, He is even more pure and holy. As irrational and unpredictable as we are, He is unchanging (Malachi 3.6, Hebrews 13.8).
Whilst we are not to use this as an excuse to do what we want (Romans 6.1-2), we are to take comfort and encouragement that Jesus is a Saviour and He takes brokenness aside and makes it beautiful.
Rather than taking our anger, frustration, guilt, shame, tiredness, inconsistencies, and apprehension out on those closest to us, there is only One place to take it.
Take all of this, and any other burdens you are carrying, to Jesus and watch Him take brokenness aside.
This week for Thursday music Below My Feet by Mumford and Sons.
Have you ever heard a song that is not overtly Christian but has so much Christianity in it that you have to listen again? This was one of those songs for me.
You were cold as the blood through your bones
And the light which led us from our chosen homes
Well I was lost
And now I sleep
Sleep the hours and that I can’t weep
When all I knew was steeped in blackened holes
I was lost
God’s Word to us tells us that Jesus died a physical death and was buried (John 19.28-30, 38-42). The Light of the world (John 8.12), sent to redeem mankind (Colossians 1.13-14), who called men and women away from jobs, homes, old lives (Matthew 4.19).
Depending on what you read, some say this is a song about the band’s search for truth and personal faith, some say this was written in response to the death of a family member. Either way, when life gets heavy for whatever reason, be it personal understanding or bereavement, it can feel like we are in a daze, not seeing things clearly, under some kind of spell. The same Jesus that died and was buried three days later rose again and brought us out of darkness into His wonderful light (1 Peter 2.9). We will never see things as clearly as when we are walking with the Lord.
And I was still
I was under your spell
When I was told by Jesus all was well
So all must be well
The chorus of the song is where we come in; what do we do now? Now we have been redeemed, now we have been bought with such a high price, now we have have been brought from darkness into light, what do we do?
Keep the earth below my feet
For all my sweat, my blood runs weak
Let me learn from where I have been
So keep my eyes to serve, my hands to learn
Well keep my eyes to serve, my hands to learn
We are to walk humbly with our God, keeping our feet on the ground (Micah 6.8), because we know that we are weak, but He is strong (2 Corinthians 12.9-11), we are to see just how much God has done for us and look back on the wonderful things He has done in our lives (Joshua 4), and we are to serve, to do, to learn, and to love one another (John 13.34-35, Hebrews 6.9-12).
Let us then keep our eyes to serve, and our hands to learn.