Reflections on Suffering (Job 29-30)
Job’s life had radically changed from prosperity to suffering. Job felt like God’s watchcare over him had also changed. He now feels like God is not lighting his path nor being a friend to him. There was a former time when Job remembered that ‘life was good’. He recalled the favor and respect that he had from others because of the apparent ‘blessing of God’ as seen in his prosperous life. Job remembered when his trouble free life allowed him to focus on pursuing the needs of others. He was able to face the despair of others with confidence and a smile.
But now this is all gone. He is mocked by those who see his suffering as a curse from God. The despair that he formerly smiled at now captures his own soul. He now finds himself to be one of the needy whom he used to help. The joys of his life are replaced with deep sorrow.
Job is honest as he relates his feelings about life. He is mistaken in how he views God’s feeling toward him.
The cry of all sufferers is – why God?
Jesus. as the exemplary innocent sufferer, made this cry on the cross, though he knew the answer to the why. God had purposed that his suffering would accomplish redemption.
Job did not immediately know the answer to ‘why’ nor did God ever give him a definitive answer.
God simply taught Job that His goodness and power are infinite and His relationship to Job is not to be gauged by the propserity or suffering that providentially touches the lives of His children.
The inalterable event of the gospel, the unchanging gift of grace assure us in our suffering that “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.”