The Wicked Prosper
Job is a book that can be difficult to understand. In fact, it can be a difficult book even just to sit and read through. There’s a lot of dialog and symbolism and references that don’t hit us the same way that they would have ancient Israelites. A lot of the text consists of a conversation between Job and his friends regarding all the suffering Job has faced. Job raises complaints and questions about the relationship between God and humanity, questions and complaints that still are raised today.
In today’s reading, Job 21:7 asks a question that many people still wrestle with today. He asks, “why do the wicked live, reach old age, and grow mighty in power?” Essentially, Job is asking why good things happen to bad people. It seems like an incredible injustice. We look at the world around us today, we see sinful behavior rewarded, and we ask that same question. I think this question has its root in our idea that some sins are worse than others. Which has truth in our relationships with one another and the earthly consequences of our sins, but in the face of God you are either perfect or you’re not. We are all deserving of death and hell, and God shows us mercy. So instead of asking “why do good things happen to bad people,” maybe we should shift our perspective to “thanks be to God that He gives any of us anything good.” I’m reminded especially of the parable in Matthew 20:15, who are we to begrudge God His generosity?
Today’s B.I.B.L.E. Takeaways:
Blessings from God
God has mercy for all of us, no matter how far we have fallen.
Instructions for Us
This story reminds us to shift our perspective back to God’s mercy instead of our righteousness.
I think there is a cool thematic connection to Matthew 20:15, of God showing grace even to people we might think don’t deserve it.
Nothing in these verses strikes me as particularly difficult to deal with.
None of these verses stand out to me as particular favorites and putting any of them on a wall would probably require thinking of them out of context.
Topics to Pray About:
- Thank God for showing us grace every day, especially the grace won by Christ
- Confess to God the times that you question His justice
- Ask for God to show you grace and bless your life
In His Service,