Wednesday, 28 May 2014

A Study in the Book of Job ( Part 2 )

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him

Our church is studying through the Bible in a year - doing a very general over view. I like to take notes as I listen to the preacher present his sermon. I want to share the notes I took on Part 2 of the Book of Job here today. After this sermon review I think I will take a break from posting a sermon review after each Sunday and I will only post when I feel it is an important message to pass on to you. So here is Part 2 on the Book of Job - the notes I took as my pastor preached:

Job has lost everything - his family, his wealth, prosperity and his health.
Job's three friends have come to comfort him. They sit with him and discuss his situation, blaming Job for wrongdoing.
The three friends believe:
Do bad and you will suffer - Do good and you will be blessed.
This formula does not work in Job's situation.
Job's suffering is not a consequence of his sin.

Finally at the end of the book God does show up.
God does not answer Job's questions. Job is asking "why?" but God does not answer this question for him.

Job 38:1-3  Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge?
 Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me.

This does not mean that we should not ask questions. Many Scriptures invite us to ask our questions. In the book of Psalms many questions are asked and answered.
Psalm 10:1 Why standest thou afar off, O Lord? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?
Psalm 13:1-2 How long wilt thou forget me, O Lord? for ever? how long wilt thou hide thy face from me?
 How long shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart daily? how long shall mine enemy be exalted over me?
Psalm 22:1-2  My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
 O my God, I cry in the day time, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.

Keep The Big Picture in Mind - 
The main point of the book of Job is not to answer the question " Why do bad things happen to good people?"

The main point is to teach us to not limit God - to not reduce what he can or will do to a formula.
The three friends did limit God to the formula - do bad and you will suffer, do good and you will be blessed.

God tells about creation and His greatness in creating it, His wisdom, majesty and power. 

How have we limited God in our lives?

a) by our likes and dislikes. We imagine that  God likes what we like and dislikes what we personally dislike. An example of this is style of music.

b) We reduce God in our situations - we act like our situation is hopeless.
We do not really believe that God can or will act to change our situation and bring hope again.

God takes Job on a tour of creation. Job cannot understand these wonderful things but God can, He is the creator of the entire universe. God is beyond anything we can imagine or fathom.

God is perfect in love: Imagine perfect love - God is much more than your imaginations. 
God is perfect in love, perfect in righteousness, perfect in holiness, in justice, in righteousness, and in compassion.

We are in awe of who God is.

We are limited as humans. We cannot fully understand how God works in the physical world nor in the spiritual world.

We are limited in our understanding in our understanding and knowledge of creation.

We don't have it all together.
We grow and learn in our understanding and knowledge but we will never learn all there is to know.

We strive to learn and to know God better and more intimately.

The book of Job invites us on a journey to get to know God. To be led into places of awe and to know Him more fully. 

God is greater than the limits we have placed on Him!


“What God has planned
    for people who love him
is more than eyes have seen
    or ears have heard.
It has never even
    entered our minds!”

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Job and his three friends ( Job Part 1 )

This is a sermon review from last Sunday's service at the church I attend. We are studying through the Bible and so now we are in the book of Job. I like to takes notes as I listen to my pastor preach and I am posting them here below. Perhaps it will enlighten your understanding of the book of Job.

Job 9:21 Though I were perfect, yet would I not know my soul: I would despise my life.

Job lived around the same time in history as Abraham and Jacob.
God makes a statement declaring that Job is blameless and upright in Job 1:8 where it reads:
And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

Satan agrees with the Lord but insists that this is due to the Lord having put a hedge of protection around Job. The Lord gives permission and satan sets out to destroy Job's life.  Job loses his family, his wealth, his health etc. Yet Job did not sin.
 Job 2:10 says: But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.

Now Job's 3 friends come to see Job in hope of comforting him and giving him insights into why these things have happened in his life. Obviously the friends do not actually know why these things have happened to Job. They do not know what is going on, but they assume they know.
The topic of discussion becomes "why do bad things happen?" and "what is the reason that are you suffering like this?"

Job's friends believe the Biblical truth that if you do bad, you will suffer, if you do good, you will be blessed. This is a truth that is taught throughout the Bible as we see in Galatians 6:7. The Biblical law of the harvest - 
Galatians 6:7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

( for an indepth study on the Biblical Law of the Harvest see my blog post - link here   Biblical Law of the Harvest

Our choices matter, our decisions do matter. 

What Job's friends do not see is that there is more going on than they can see. There is a spiritual battle going on here.  The friends do not know that satan has challenged the Lord on his protection of Job and satan suggested that Job only lives for the Lord because of the blessings and protection of the Lord in his life. 

The friends are not speaking the whole truth. They are accusing Job of wrong doing yet God says Job is upright and blameless. God knows the heart, we cannot argue with God.

 Job keeps arguing the fact that he is righteous, that he has done nothing wrong to be deserving of these tragic events that have occurred in his life.  The three friends argue that he has sin in his life and therefore these terrible tragedies have come upon him. Job's friends agree that Job has evil in his life, that he is not innocent as he claims he is, and they judge and condemn Job in their lengthy speeches.

Often times we too judge and condemn people around us. We see a person, perhaps dressed oddly or in raggedy clothes and we assume we know their story - why they look and act as they do, when in fact we do not know what is going on in their lives.
There is more to the story. We should not be so quick to imagine we know their story. We need to be careful not to define others - it is not our place to judge them.

To judge and define a person on a story we have heard of them is wrong ( whether the story is true or not. )

Job's friend accuse him of many things in Job 22:6-10. The friends are not accurate in their judgement of him. Here is what the friends say about Job in

 Job 22:6-10: For thou hast taken a pledge from thy brother for nought, and stripped the naked of their clothing. Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink, and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry. But as for the mighty man, he had the earth; and the honourable man dwelt in it. Thou hast sent widows away empty, and the arms of the fatherless have been broken.Therefore snares are round about thee, and sudden fear troubleth thee;

We must not judge others based on a story we have heard of them - God sees the big picture. 
We need to remember that:
1) all human beings are created in God's image.
As you interact with others, you will see God reflected in them.

2) All human beings are loved by God and He longs for all to be saved.
God loves each of us so intensely that Jesus died for each one of us, does not matter who we are or what we have done in our past - Jesus died for you!

God has compassion on each one of us! Come to Jesus today!!

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Loving like God loves....

On Sunday, May 4th, we had a guest speaker in our church. His name is Tim Sawatsky. The following are my notes that I took during the service as I listened to him speak.

photo from smileyme.com

1 John 4 :7-11
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.
 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

What does it mean to be loved by God?

What you believe in your life is how you will behave - you will live accordingly.

Why does God care about you and me? 
According to 1 John 4:10, it is because He loves you and me.
When you truly love someone - you will care about them and for them.

Love is more than words.
God showed His great love for us by going to the cross - Jesus died on the cross in our place for the forgiveness of our sin.

Every day is a choice to love.

To love is a commandment from God - not a suggestion.

John 13:34-35 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Love as Jesus has loved us.

The world is watching - are you loving your neighbor as yourself?
The world doesn't care how much you know - but rather how much you care.

What would it look like if we loved one another? A good definition of love is "you before me" - that is I must put my needs and desires aside and look for the good of others, help those in need, be a good listener, pray for others, help the hurting, give up your time for others etc.

The God of the universe cares for me!!

Everyday is an amazing gift from God! Every breath you take is an amazing gift from God.

Love requires action!!

The cross brings unity -  rich and poor, male and female, color of skin, tall or short, old or young - all are equal in God's eyes.
Jesus paid the same price for all - We are level, equal.
We are one in Christ.

Ephesians 3:14-20

 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,

Monday, 5 May 2014

In the LORD I put my trust....

May 5, 2014

Isaiah 25:4 For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.

photo from thisoldhoue.com

Psalm 61:3-4 For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.
 I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah.

photo from fotothing.com

Isaiah 25 8-9 He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it.

 And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.

picture from nallifollowthelight.wordpress.com

Click link to listen to George Jones - Jesus Hold My Hand

"Jesus, Hold My Hand" 

( http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/georgejones/jesusholdmyhand.html )
As I travel through this pilgrim land
There is a friend who walks with me
Leads me safely through the sinking sand
It is the Christ at Calvary.

This would be my prayer dear Lord each day
To help me do the best I can
For I need Thy light to guide me day and night
Blessed Jesus hold my hand.

Jesus hold my hand
I need thee every hour
Through this pilgrim land
Protect me by thy power.

Hear my feeble plea
O Lord look down on me
When I kneel in prayer I hope to meet you there
Blessed Jesus hold my hand.


Let me travel in the light divine
That I may see the blessed way
Keep me that I may be wholly Thine
And sing redemption's song some day

I will be a soldier brave and true
And ever firmly take a stand
As I onward go and daily meet the foe
Blessed Jesus hold my hand.

Jesus hold my hand
I need thee every hour
Through this pilgrim land
Protect me by thy power.

Hear my feeble plea.
And O Lord look down on me
When I kneel in prayer I hope to meet you there
Blessed Jesus hold my hand.

When I kneel in prayer I hope to meet you there
Blessed Jesus hold my hand...