Job 16-19, Psalm 139
Corrie Ten Boom was a Dutch Christian who, along with her father and other family members, helped approximately 800 Jews escape the Nazi Holocaust during World War II. After being caught she was sent to the Ravensbruck concentration camp, where her sister Betsie died at the hands of the Nazis. Corrie Ten Boom, like Job, learned the depths of despair through her circumstances. But through this she learned to lean on God. She said, “There is no pit so deep but He is not deeper still.” She also said, “You’ll never know the Lord is all you need until the Lord is all you have.” Through their circumstances they learned to stop relying on earthly things and get their focus onto God.
Job in his comments is sinking lower and lower. In Job 19:13-19, he states how he is despised by his wife, his family, his friends, the children, even his servants. In Job 17:6, he says, “But He made me a byword of the people, And I have become one in whose face men spit.” But from these depths at the end of Chapter 19, we see him change his focus from his own circumstances onto God, and in so doing we see one of the strongest declarations of faith in the Old Testament. In Job 19:25-27, we read, “For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth; And after my skin is destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God, Whom I shall see for myself, And my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!”
This Redeemer or “Goel”, speaks of one who can set free or purchase back what has been lost. We saw this same example in Boaz, the Kinsmen Redeemer (also “Goel”) in the book of Ruth. When Jesus said on the cross in John 19:30, “It is finished”, these words from Our Redeemer, also mean “paid in full”.
We live in a prosperous and complacent nation, where situations like we see in the life of Job and Corrie Ten Boom are not that common. The danger in this is as we keep our focus on our vacations, the football game, our kid’s activities, etc, we are distracted from what really matters. We have to consider whether we spend the majority of our time with our focus on the horizontal, or the here and now, or vertical on things eternal. The valleys in our life help us to look up. We see from Job’s words that faith can indeed triumph over the darkest circumstances. May we learn from Job , and learn to take our eyes from our own circumstances, be they good or bad, and focus them on God.
Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley: