33: 19-22. It appears that the thought that God teaches us with sickness and disease didn’t start yesterday. I hope God answers Elihu on this.
33:33. Someone should slap this man’s face; not because he has not spoken wise quotes, not because the things he spoke are incorrect and misplaced, not because he is wrong in thinking “the old are not always wise” but because his knowledge is making him swell with pride and he has lost or put aside his respect for Elders.
His inspirational speech beginning in chapter 32 has been consulted for years for many of its wise remarks, even I have lived in the light of 32:8-10. But suddenly today, I see the disrespect this young man has for old age and though he did well to conceal it (32:6 – 7) and probably that earned him audience with the Elders, he took “the inspiration of the almighty” quite too far.
I observe that many young people of today suffer from the same plague. We acquire more knowledge at our age than the Elders did in their time and for some, all of their lifetime put together, and the fact that we are more current makes us think we are wiser. This wrong assumption makes us commit another offense; we despise the Elders because of their supposed ignorance. Most of us young ministers despise mentorship for this same reason.
Chapter 12:5 – When people are in trouble, naturally, those who are not in trouble will mock the one in trouble and point out the fact that he brought the calamity upon himself. This is a fact established in life… not through wisdom but foolishness.
Wisdom dictates this, “mourn with those who mourn” and that is one wise thing Job’s friends did at first (2: 11 -13). It is not wise to say “this is what I would have done if I were in his shoes” without considering the kind of person who is presently in sorrow and wondering “what brought this upon him” and “I wonder if I would do better in such circumstances” and finally, “Lord, I am at your mercy. Should I face such a situation, help me to know you are near so I can keep following you.”
Job’s friends spoke a lot of wise sayings. They made a lot of statements that have truth in them… But they were not wise. They misdirected their quotable quotes and rather than console, they condemned. Rather than reasoning, they concluded (32:3) all because they followed events and missed the cause. Apparently, the wisdom of their day which is what they had adopted, (15: 10) asdumed that anyone who suffers calamity cannot be pure and so deserves his sorrow (19:5; 22:6 -11; 32:2). It appears that Job, even in his anguish, was still in touch with his spirit and whatever form of truth he knew “leaked out” occasionally. (16: 18-21; 19: 25-29; 21: 19-21; 23:6-7).
The same thing happens to us today. In our calamity, we speak rashly. The truth lies deep within us and occasionally leak out but we are too distraught to notice it. It is when the storm is over that we realize that the truth we finally heeded which led to our rescue, though it was spoken to us by another person, had all the while been ringing within ourselves. I have been there, many times… very many times.
Chapter 9:1-4, 14- 22- Apparently he thought God’s justice was established upon his unassailable wisdom [cunning, wit] and his unrivaled strength such that even if one had a reason to be in court against God for a wrong God has done, one would not win the case because God will outwit his accuser a thousand to one and if that was not enough, God will use his mighty strength to turn all rules so that he would come out just. Yet later on, he expressed confidence in God’s fairness and thus contradicted his own rash accusations (23:6 -7) and doubted his doubts.
I take it that Job knew of the ways to appease God and plead with him and thus sacrificed daily and as often as he thought was necessary. (1: 5) and his restraints from evil was not because he knew and loved the Lord but because he feared the Lord and his retribution for participating in evil. But he did not really know God. How do I know this?
Chapter 6: 4 – He thought it was God who was against him; He didn’t know there was a devil. (9:17- 18; 16:7- 22; 19:6-12, 21- 22)
I don’t have all the answers to the questions raised by this book just, yet one statement stands clear to me:
9:24… If not the [God], then who?
It appears that the book of Job is the question of humanity in the face of calamity when they entertain the concept of a God (even if it is the almighty one) who wants nothing with man except to be appeased rather than knowing him intimately and with no concept of an adversary called the devil. (chapter 1,2:1- 10)
The book of Job is one of the puzzling books in the Bible for most people. Many have never even the read the book through. Well, for some reason I felt like reading the book of Job straight through in one sitting and on the January first 2005, I did.
I recently stumbled upon the notes I made and it was a refreshing read and so I have decided to share them here. The notes are in a prospective form, meaning that I wrote down what I was contemplating as I went along in the course of reading and not retrospective which would have been after reading through and writing with 20-20 hindsight. Therefore, some of the notes were questions I was asking and hoping to get answers to later on. Some answers I got at the end, others much later on as I kept walking with God.
I will share the notes as they are with the hope that they would stir in your heart the truth that God kept in this interesting book for you.
I did not include the verses of scripture as that would amount to including the entire book of Job in here making it too voluminous. It is my hope that you would consult the Bible for yourself as you go along.
So, after all the foregoing, what do I have to say?
1. The tithe is God’s.
2. Tithing is God’s idea.
3. Tithing predates the Law of Moses, even Abraham, and so cannot be said to have passed away with The Law since it didn’t come with The Law. By the way, Hebrews 7 shows that Melchizedeck, who I think represents Jesus Christ, is still receiving tithes. So tithing is still in effect.
4. The Law is good in that it shows us what is right and wrong. We who live in the era of grace have the power to fulfill the law by living above it and doing what is right irrespective of the Law.
5. Paying or giving the tithe is necessary to enjoy the blessing you have. It is not optional or up to how you feel about it.
6. There are three different types of tithes: the tithes to the church and/or pastor, the love feasts and seeds, and the ministry to the less privileged. None is superior to another and none cancels out another.
7. The tithe under scrutiny is “the tithe to the church or pastor”. It is to be paid in the spiritual house where you are being ministered to and cared for.
8. A child of God cannot become cursed because he didn’t do any particular thing but he will struggle if he doesn’t do his part of the covenant he has with God and that is not a blessing but a curse.
9. Joy is a necessary part of all giving. It is better not to give than to give without rejoicing but it is best to find joy in all your giving. However, you already have joy in you as a fruit of your spirit, so give if the cause is right whether you are being compelled or not.
I encourage you, in spite of all I have written here, to search the scriptures for yourself with an open mind and learn the will of God concerning this matter and every other matter in the kingdom. I trust the teaching Spirit to show you the way.
Again, if you have questions requesting clarification, send me a private message. I will consider any thing in the comments as just that and I may not respond to them.
Thank you and stay blessed.
For part 6, http://wp.me/p6rlMY-1O
Part 1, http://wp.me/p6rlMY-1E