January 26 Bible Reading:
**Click to read Christine Miller’s Bible study for today.
Good morning! I took an entire page of notes today. Maybe you should brew an extra pot of coffee…. <wink> We are finishing Job today, and there were just so many things to ponder.
I chose a picture of a dragon today because YHVH spends an entire chapter telling Job about the power of Leviathan, or a fire-breathing dragon.
“His sneezings flash forth light,
And his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning.
Out of his mouth go burning lights;
Sparks of fire shoot out.
Smoke goes out of his nostrils,
As from a boiling pot and burning rushes.
His breath kindles coals,
And a flame goes out of his mouth” (Job 41:18-21).
Yes, fire-breathing dragons were real, and history from all over the world confirms that these terrifying beasts have long been considered Enemy Number One. I have never seen one, but Scripture compares Satan to this beast (Revelation 12).
I cannot tame this Enemy, and I would be foolish to say I could (Jude 1:8-10). But my Creator rules over all, even the most wicked of enemies! YHVH says,
“No one is so fierce that he would dare stir him up.
Who then is able to stand against Me?
Who has preceded Me, that I should pay him?
Everything under heaven is Mine” (Job 41:10-11).
Next time I am afraid of any enemy, man or beast, storm or demon, I hope that I will remember to fix my eyes on my awesome Creator instead. Yes, His light shines so brightly that it reveals our deepest secrets and sins, which is terrifying, yet this healthy “fear of YHVH” causes us to walk in holiness and ultimately brings restoration to our lives.
“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear,
But now my eye sees You.
Therefore I abhor myself,
And repent in dust and ashes” (Job 42:5-6).
And our terrifying, awesome, and holy Creator then followed His own laws and restored what had been stolen from Job by the Enemy. Even the mighty Dragon Satan was required to obey the Torah and make restitution.
How much was restored to Job?
“And YHVH restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed YHVH gave Job twice as much as he had before” (Job 42:10).
“Twice as much” — which is what the Torah requires:
“If a man steals an ox or a sheep… He should make full restitution… If the theft is certainly found alive in his hand, whether it is an ox or donkey or sheep, he shall restore double… For any kind of trespass, whether it concerns an ox, a donkey, a sheep, or clothing, or for any kind of lost thing which another claims to be his, the cause of both parties shall come before the judges; and whomever the judges condemn shall pay double to his neighbor” (Exodus 22:1, 4, 9).
The last 40 chapters have been nothing but Job “coming before the Judge” and asking for justice, and YHVH indeed gave it to him. I think this is so beautiful!
When it says that YHVH “restored Job’s losses,” these are Hebrew words meaning that YHVH “turned back his captivity.” Want to know why I love that phrase? Because that’s what He is going to do for us!
(I know this passage is long, but it’s so worth it! Read it and realize He is talking about the times in which we live!)
“For then I will restore to the peoples a pure language,
That they all may call on the name of YHVH,
To serve Him with one accord.
From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia
The daughter of My dispersed ones,
Shall bring My offering.
In that day you shall not be shamed for any of your deeds
In which you transgress against Me;
For then I will take away from your midst
Those who rejoice in your pride,
And you shall no longer be haughty
In My holy mountain.
I will leave in your midst
A meek and humble people,
And they shall trust in the name of YHVH.
The remnant of Israel shall do no unrighteousness
And speak no lies,
Nor shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth;
For they shall feed their flocks and lie down,
And no one shall make them afraid.
“Sing, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O Israel!
Be glad and rejoice with all your heart,
O daughter of Jerusalem!
YHVH has taken away your judgments,
He has cast out your enemy.
The King of Israel, YHVH, is in your midst;
You shall see disaster no more.
“In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem:
‘Do not fear;
Zion, let not your hands be weak.
YHVH your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.
“‘I will gather those who sorrow over the appointed assembly,
Who are among you,
To whom its reproach is a burden.
Behold, at that time
I will deal with all who afflict you;
I will save the lame,
And gather those who were driven out;
I will appoint them for praise and fame
In every land where they were put to shame.
At that time I will bring you back,
Even at the time I gather you;
For I will give you fame and praise
Among all the peoples of the earth,
When I turn back your captivity before your eyes,’
Says YHVH” (Zephaniah 3:9-20).
Isn’t that awesome?!
“Then all his brothers, all his sisters, and all those who had been his acquaintances before, came to him and ate food with him in his house; and they consoled him and comforted him for all the adversity that YHVH had brought upon him. Each one gave him a piece of silver and each a ring of gold” (Job 42:11).
And before we leave Job, let me help make the transition back to Genesis, where we’ll continue tomorrow. We read that Job lived another 140 years after this incident, long enough to see four generations of children and grandchildren (Job 5:25-26). Job was a contemporary of Reu, a cousin of Job who is mentioned in Genesis 11:20. The fourth generation of Job’s children would have been born about the same time as Abraham (Genesis 11:26). So when we read that Job’s brothers, sisters, and acquaintances came to comfort him, this is speaking about the people whose names you can read in Genesis 10:21-31 and Genesis 11:16-32. I think this is fun to think about! It’s likely that Job knew Abraham as a young child, while he probably knew Shem, the son of Noah. Maybe Shem was at dinner that day! This is probably why we even know about Job at all, as these men were instrumental in passing down the histories of the ancient world until the time of Moses.
This brings us to Psalm 27, which start with my husband’s favorite verses:
“YHVH is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
YHVH is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked came against me
To eat up my flesh,
My enemies and foes,
They stumbled and fell.
Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident” (Psalm 27:1-3).
The wicked dragon came against Job, literally to eat up his flesh. Armies encamped around Job’s sheep, oxen, and other livestock. All the forces of evil rose against him.
The word wicked (Strong’s #7489) means “impaired or abnormal filling of purpose; to act wrongly by injuring or doing an evil action.” Similar Hebrew words are shouting, loud noise, infection that causes swelling, and a hornet. Think killer bee. Yikes!
Can I actually say the next time a storm comes against me, that my heart will not fear?
As we said yesterday, only if I am dwelling in the presence of YHVH. I like what Christine pointed out about the past few Psalms we’ve been reading:
All the psalms we have read recently have a similar theme running through them: the delightfulness of the LORD, the excellency of His house/ His dwelling place/ His presence, and for that reason we seek Him and keep our eyes fixed on Him:
LORD, I have loved the habitation of Your house,
And the place where Your glory dwells. Psalm 26:8
My eyes are ever toward the LORD,
For He shall pluck my feet out of the net. Psalm 25:15
This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face. Psalm 24:6
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. Psalm 23:6
The poor shall eat and be satisfied;
Those who seek Him will praise the LORD.
Let your heart live forever! Psalm 22:26
For You have made him most blessed forever;
You have made him exceedingly glad with Your presence. Psalm 21:6
The other theme running through all these psalms is enemies. David had literal enemies trying to kill him. Just because there is probably no one in our lives who is actively trying to harm us like David had in his life, let us not be lulled to sleep into thinking that we have no enemies. Our enemy prowls around us like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). David prevailed over his enemies by seeking and remaining in the Lord’s beautiful and delightful presence with praise and thanksgiving, and that is exactly how we will prevail over our enemy also!
And finally we come to Matthew 19, where Yeshua talks about the justice that will come in the Resurrection:
“Then Peter answered and said to Him, ‘See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?‘
“So Yeshua said to them, ‘Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name’s sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life‘” (Matthew 19:28-29).
Job was given restitution of double what he had lost. Our promise is a hundredfold, if we will just follow Him.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture in this blog post taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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To Study Further:
- In Matthew 19:13, Yeshua puts His hands on the little children. The cross references in my Bible translate this as “blessing them” (Mark 10:13, Luke 18:15). This is a packed statement, so I hope you’ll ponder it, especially since Hebrews 6:1-2 says that the doctrine of the laying on of hands is a foundational teaching we all need to know about.
- Don’t miss Christine’s excellent post about fathers and children.
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