Suggested readings for week of April 24th
Hello Project Ezra. This week’s suggested reading is Job chapter 9. I believe the theme of Job 9 is the same theme as the whole book of Job: God is God and we are not. Job seems to be complaining a bit (not surprising based on everything Satan has thrown at him), but regardless, much of what he says is true. We are God’s creation and this is his world, and it is inappropriate and pointless for us to answer back to him. But Job seems to be struggling in this chapter between his understanding of God’s sovereignty and his frustration with his circumstance, which don’t make sense to him. Many people I have talked to who claim to be agnostic or atheist will use circumstances very similar to those in Job as their reasons for walking away from God, for not considering him to begin with, or for doubting his goodness. The subject of suffering and the goodness of God is obviously not something that we can address here, but we can touch on a few things that will make good springboards to the gospel:
Verses 2-12 – God’s power and dominion. He is the creator and can do what he wants with his creation.
Verses 13-24 – God’s judgment on the world, both the “good” and the evil. This is also reflected in the New Testament in Matthew 5:45, although in a different context. Of course, none but God is truly good, but regardless, negative circumstances here on earth may or may not reflect a direct judgment of God. In a general sense they all reflect the fallen state of our world due to sin.
Verses 25-26 – Life is short and passes quickly. We should not take our time on earth for granted.
Verses 27-35 – This passage again talks of God’s judgment, but seems to be more self-reflective. Job is almost despairing, knowing that no labor he can do will cleanse him in God’s sight, and there is no arbiter between him and the Almighty.
Of course, we know that the arbiter, the mediator Job was desperate for, became flesh in the person of Jesus Christ, and only through him do we escape the judgment that we deserve, as Job did. So, though this chapter does not contain the entirety of the gospel, it sets it up very well. I would suggest using some of the verses above as an introduction. Then, clarify how we have all broken God’s law and are guilty and deserving of punishment and hell. Finish up with the amazing good news of Jesus’ substitutionary death and resurrection, and obtaining his grace through repentance and faith. Have a great time of outreach, and remember, before you spend your time on the street, spend time in the word and on your knees. It’s a spiritual battlefield out there, so make sure you have your armor on.
All for His glory!