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Righteous Suffering: Praise In The Pain

Praise In The Pain  Job 25-26

In his pain and suffering, what is coming out of Job?  In Job 26 it is praise!  Throughout the book there is questioning, there is rebuke of the false theology of his friends, there is complaining but there is no “curse you to your face”.  Quite the contrary.  Job keeps praising. 

Do not forget how this story started.  In chapters one and two, the statement was made that Job doesn’t fear God for nothing.  “Of course Job worships you.  He’s on the payroll.  Take him off the payroll and he will curse you to your face.” 

The implication is that God is not worthy of praise unless he’s paying for it and even his own people know it because if we weren’t getting blessed and kept from hard times we would fold like a cheap lawn chair.

Is that true?  No.  Says who?  Well, says you if you’ve grown closer to God in your suffering.  Says Job and any other true child of God who is being crushed by pain and sorrow like Job has.  You know someone going through terminal cancer or going through the loss of a loved one, somebody who is truly a child of God and what is coming out of them?  

The Christian is not exempt from sorrow and grief but we are not alone.

You and I have an advocate:

Job felt alone in his grief.  In Job 9:32-33 he says, 32 For he is not a man, as I am, that I might answer him, that we should come to trial together.  33 There is no arbiter between us, who might lay his hand on us both.”

This is not true for you and me.

1 John 2:1-2 ‘1My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous’.”

Satan’s plan to destroy Job’s testimony continues with attacks on you and me.

Luke 22:31-32 says 31 “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat,”

Satan does this to you and me today.  See Revelation 12:10  “…for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God.”? 

Satan accuses you and me and demands to “sift us like wheat”.  Shake us, roll us, and toss us in the air.  But Jesus intercedes for us.

Luke 22:32 “but I have prayed for you…”

Not to keep us from it. 

Not to shelter us from trials and grief but, “… that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.”

The one that can be the best comfort in grief is the one that has been in the same grief before.  (See 2 Corinthians 1:3-4). 

This glorifies God because, not only does it prove that God is worthy of the praise; it matters quite a lot to the person who is giving the praise.  Not the pampered, spoiled, and sheltered but the poor and suffering.  The people who have no selfish motive to do it.  The people who have been broken and spilled out. 
“Why are you praising this God who is allowing this to happen to you?”

Because He’s worthy of it, that’s why. 

It just makes the Christian more and more focused on their Lord. 

Please remember how this story begins and ends.  It begins with Job sacrificing and interceding for his family and it ends with Job sacrificing and interceding for his three friends.  Job had a ministry and it was stronger at the end of the book than it was in the beginning.

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