TODAYS BIBLE READING:
Reading Time: 15-20 Minutes
BREAD CRUMBS COMMENTARY FOR TODAYS READING
with Pastor Jed Robyn (4 minutes)
jan 23, 2023
DAY 23 IN THE APP
THIS WEEKS MEMORY VERSE
…Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord. ~Job 1:21
A FEW THOUGHTS...
The divide between Job and his friends is so sharp, that it is easy to forget that they are indeed friends. It is easy to forget how this entire interaction began in Job 2:11-13, as we read how his friends traveled from their own place, "...For they made an appointment together to come and mourn with him, and to comfort him. And when they raised their eyes from afar, and did not recognize him, they lifted their voices and wept; and each one tore his robe and sprinkled dust on his head toward heaven. So they sat down with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word to him, for they saw his grief was very great." Now this is true friendship, seven days without so much as saying a word. But all of this changed when Job did not agree with their advice. Though initially their speeches vacillated between helping Job and proving their point, when Job disagreed, the speeches turned angry and hostile as their sole focus became to prove Job wrong. We must understand what was at the heart of their stance, if Job was not a sinner being punished by God, then their view of God was all wrong, and they might not be safe, protected by their views of their own righteous behavior. Moving this one step further, what happened to Job could also happen to them. In his previous speech, Bildad was so cruel as to tell Job that his sons died because of their sins (Job 8:4). He goes on in Job 18: 2-5, "How long till you put an end to words? Gain understanding and afterward we will speak. Why are we counted as beasts, And regarded as stupid in your sight? You who tear yourself in anger,...The light of the wicked indeed goes out, And the flame of his fire does not shine." He escalates his attack in 18:17-19, "The memory of him perishes from the earth, And he has no name among the renowned. He is driven from the light into darkness, And chased out of the world. He has neither son nor posterity among his people, Nor any remaining in his dwellings."
We must always check our motives when engaging in debates. Is it to prove ourselves right at all costs? Even if we start out with the correct mindset, do we lose it somewhere in the middle of the argument? Jesus said what would distinguish us from others in John 13:35, "By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." In Ephesians 4:15, Paul reminds us to "speak the truth in love". This does not mean that we should agree with a position that we disagree with just to be agreeable. There is nothing wrong in holding to a position, but it should be conveyed with love. If we determine that the conversation is not moving in a good direction, we should have the wisdom to stop or switch gears. The point should not be about proving ourselves right. Pride must not enter our argument. We must never forget that we are God's ambassadors on earth, for our citizenship is in heaven (Philippians 3:20). In these very hostile and divided times, hearts can become tender towards Jesus Christ, but the messenger's delivery must be tender. Solomon said in Proverbs 15:1, "A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger."
THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK
"The Christian life is not a constant high. I have my moments of deep discouragement. I have to go to God in prayer with tears in my eyes, and say, 'O God, forgive me,' or 'Help me.'” - Billy Graham