Scripture to meditate on:
And Job continued his discourse:
“As surely as God lives, who has denied me justice,
the Almighty, who has made my life bitter,
as long as I have life within me,
the breath of God in my nostrils,
my lips will not say anything wicked,
and my tongue will not utter lies.
I will never admit you are in the right;
till I die, I will not deny my integrity.
I will maintain my innocence and never let go of it;
my conscience will not reproach me as long as I live.
“May my enemy be like the wicked,
my adversary like the unjust!
For what hope have the godless when they are cut off,
when God takes away their life?
Does God listen to their cry
when distress comes upon them?
Will they find delight in the Almighty?
Will they call on God at all times?
“I will teach you about the power of God;
the ways of the Almighty I will not conceal.
You have all seen this yourselves.
Why then this meaningless talk?
“Here is the fate God allots to the wicked,
the heritage a ruthless man receives from the Almighty:
However many his children, their fate is the sword;
his offspring will never have enough to eat.
The plague will bury those who survive him,
and their widows will not weep for them.
Though he heaps up silver like dust
and clothes like piles of clay,
what he lays up the righteous will wear,
and the innocent will divide his silver.
The house he builds is like a moth’s cocoon,
like a hut made by a watchman.
He lies down wealthy, but will do so no more;
when he opens his eyes, all is gone.
Terrors overtake him like a flood;
a tempest snatches him away in the night.
The east wind carries him off, and he is gone;
it sweeps him out of his place.
It hurls itself against him without mercy
as he flees headlong from its power.
It claps its hands in derision
and hisses him out of his place.” – Job 27
Although it is the patience of Job that is legendary from this Biblical account, it might just as well have been Job’s persistence that we remark upon. In this, and the following chapters, Job continues to insist on his blamelessness and innocence, even in the face of the annoying arguments of his friends. Another man might well have conceded to their arguments long ago, in hopes that they would finally go away and allow him to suffer in peace.
But for Job, his righteousness seems to be all that he has left in the face of his overwhelming tragedy. He is determined to hold fast to that one thing.
We have something in common with Job. Come face to face with tragedy or real loss, and you will quickly come to a similar conclusion. Although unlike Job, we cannot ourselves claim to be blameless or righteous, we can claim the righteousness of another, Jesus the Messiah.
We, like Job, must hold persistently to the righteousness of Christ. When all else has been removed, it is only that righteousness which will remain.
“I will maintain my innocence and never let go of it; my conscience will not reproach me as long as I live.” – Job 27:6
Questions to ponder:
- What do you persistently hold onto in the face of trouble?
- What does the righteousness of Christ ultimately mean for you?