From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/26:

Job refuses to cave in to his friends’ false teachings about the Lord and suffering, but when put on the defense by his friends, Job starts justifying himself based on his own merit – “I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; my justice was like a robe and a turban. I was eyes to the blind, and I was feet to the lame. I was a father to the poor, and I searched out the case that I did not know. I broke the fangs of the wicked, and plucked the victim from his teeth.” The Lord did declare Job blameless in the beginning of this story, but that wasn’t based on Job’s actions; and his suffering isn’t based on his failures.  

Job, a righteous man, is enduring extreme suffering for God’s purposes. Jesus Christ will willingly do the same. And when Jesus arrives on the scene and John the Baptist is sitting in prison wondering if Jesus is really the Messiah, Jesus will say to John’s disciples – “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me” (Matthew 11:4-6). Jesus, the final Lamb, is coming to heal the blind, the deaf, the lepers, and ultimately anyone who believes in Him. Jesus, the only perfect Man to ever live, will die a horrific death so that you and I can have hope.

“Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous” (Romans 5:18-19). These verses explain that Adam’s disobedience in the beginning of this story, in the garden of Eden, brought sin into the world. As a result, we are all born sinners in need of a Savior. Therefore, the Lord is sending His Son Jesus to make righteous and restore to His Father anyone who believes in Him. 

Job’s story points to Christ, as do all these stories within the beautiful big story of the Bible. However, we have more people to meet and stories to read before we get to Jesus—so keep reading! (Job 26:1-29:25)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/25:

Eliphaz, keeping with the theme that Job’s severe suffering is because of Job’s severe sin, says to Job, “Is not your wickedness great, and your iniquity without end?” Then Eliphaz makes a list for Job of all the potential sins Job could have committed, including taking pledges from his brother without reason, stripping the naked of their clothing, not providing water or food for the weary, neglecting the widows, etc. Job responds saying he wishes he could take his case before the Lord – “Would He contend with me in His great power? No! But He would take note of me. There the upright could reason with Him, and I would be delivered forever from my Judge.” 

The Lord is a just Judge, and Job will soon have his chance to go before Him. But when Job stands before the Lord, Job will not talk about how upright and righteous he is… no, quite the opposite. Job will quickly recognize how sinful and disgusting he is next to the Holy God. However, God will show Job mercy, but not because of anything that Job has done to earn it by his good deeds. Job’s righteousness isn’t based on Job’s performance.

Bildad asks Job about righteousness – “How then can man be righteous before God? Or how can he be pure who is born of a woman?” In Genesis 15:6, God says about Abram that “he believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.” So Abram was called righteous solely based on his faith in the Lord. Hebrews 11:6 says, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him.” So what pleases God? Faith. Job’s righteousness has nothing to do with his actions or prosperity but everything to do with his faith in God. We saw Job’s faith exhibited in the beginning of his story when he built an altar to the Lord. Job was approaching the Lord through the shedding of the blood of the innocent, placing his faith in the promise of the Savior to come as a substitutionary atonement for our sins. This is the promise God gave to Adam and Eve back in the garden before He killed an innocent animal to cover the guilty (Genesis 3:15, 21). There is only one Man born from a woman who is born pure in this story, and that is Jesus Christ. And the only way He is pure is that His seed comes from the outside, from the Lord. 

Later Paul will explain that we are justified and our sins and penalty of sin are removed by the blood of Christ – “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him” (Romans 5:8-9). Our righteousness is found under the blood of Christ. Jesus, the ultimate Sacrifice, will arrive on the scene soon, but for now, more animals will be killed pointing to the One to come, so keep reading. (Job 22:1-25:6)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/24:

Today Job says “How long will you torment my soul, and break me in pieces with words? These ten times you have reproached me.” Job’s friends’ further attempts at explaining Job’s suffering only add additional pain to the already suffering Job. 

Later in the story, Jesus’ half-brother James will provide some good advice on how to respond to one’s suffering – “Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms… Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed” (James 5:13,16). Praying for Job would be way more beneficial than trying to rationalize suffering which is sometimes unexplainable. But that’s not the approach that Job’s friends took. 

Job’s deep wounds lead him to cry out, “Oh, that my words were written! Oh, that they were inscribed in a book! That they were engraved on a rock with an iron pen and lead, forever! 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!” 

At this point in Job’s life, could Job have known that his words would be written in a book that lasts forever? A book that we can read today and learn more about the Lord, the spiritual realm, Satan, suffering, waiting on God, origin of righteousness, etc. Could Job have known that? No. But what Job does know is that the day will come when his suffering will end and he will stand face to face with the Lord — and we can have that same assurance. At the end of the story, in the book of Revelation, the Lord explains that the ones who are saved by grace through faith will one day stand before the Lord and our faith will become sight – “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4). But in the meantime, we must trust the Lord with our pain and suffering, just like Job. I’m sure Job couldn’t even imagine the magnitude of the impact that his life would have on the world, but we see that God wastes nothing, and He uses all things, even suffering, for our good and His glory.

Eventually the Lord is going to appear and guess what? God is going to ask Job to pray for his friends so that they may be healed, just as James said we should do for one another. But first, Eliphaz feels the need to list for Job all the possible ways he may have sinned, resulting in his afflictions. That’s up tomorrow, so keep reading. (Job 19:1-21:34)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/23:

Today Job’s friend Eliphaz continues to try to convince Job that his suffering is a direct result of his wickedness. He accuses Job of being a hypocrite, briber, troublemaker, and liar – “For the company of hypocrites will be barren, and fire will consume the tents of bribery. They conceive trouble and bring forth futility; their womb prepares deceit.”  

Job is suffering greatly and is surrounded by people who add to his misery. His friends don’t understand Job’s suffering nor do they understand the Lord. So Job says to his friends “miserable comforters are you all!” Job could use an encouraging word from his friends, which he will not receive. Job says if he were in their place he could heap up words against them but he wouldn’t. Job would strengthen them with his mouth, and the comfort of his lips would relieve their grief. However, the constant berating from Job’s friends leads Job to cry out – “My friends scorn me; My eyes pour out tears to God.”

Although Job’s friends don’t understand his suffering and are terrible comforters, God always understands and always provides comfort. The hard part is waiting on the Lord to act on our behalf – “For since the beginning of the world men have not heard nor perceived by the ear, nor has the eye seen any God besides You, who acts for the one who waits for Him” (Isaiah 64:4). We have seen through studying the lives of the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as well as the life of Joseph, that God doesn’t always act quickly, but He does act on behalf of His people and His timing is always perfect! 

Soon we will see the Lord act on Job’s behalf, but in the meantime we have to wait it out with suffering Job, so keep reading. (Job 15:1-18:21)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/22:

After Job responds to Zophar’s unhelpful input, he cries out “You are all worthless physicians. Oh, that you would be silent.” Job understands that God is the Great Physician. And although Job is suffering greatly, he still puts his trust in the Lord saying, “Though He slay me, yet I will trust Him.” Job doesn’t understand that it’s Satan at work, but Job does understand enough to know that he can trust God regardless of his afflictions.

Then Job says, “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? No one!” Job is aware that he is a sinner in need of a Savior. But in the midst of his pain, Job is longing for death and wrestling with the thought of afterlife – “Oh, that You would hide me in the grave, that You would conceal me until Your wrath is past, that You would appoint me a set time, and remember me! If a man dies, shall he live again? All the days of my hard service I will wait, till my change comes. You shall call, and I will answer You.” Job doesn’t understand the reason for his pain nor does he understand all about life after death; however, he longs for a change, and he trusts that the Lord will somehow, someway bring that change. 

God is sending a Savior, the Mediator Jesus Christ, who will make unclean things clean, who will provide a way for eternal life, and who will offer the change that Job is waiting for. Remember, Job only has a few stories from Scriptures from where he gains his hope. We have the privilege of reading all of God’s promises laid out for us in the Bible from the beginning in Genesis till the end in Revelation. Therefore, we know that the Savior has come and lived a life we can’t live, died a death we deserve, and risen from the grave, giving us assurance that we will one day rise again. Those who put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ will live forever in heaven where there will be no more pain and suffering; and one day we will receive new bodies that are not affected by illness and decay. Paul writes about this change that Job is longing for, the day we will be made whole for eternity – “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’” 

For those in Christ, there is a guaranteed expiration date to all suffering. And for Job, who trusts in the Lord and in His promises, there is an expiration date for his suffering as well, so keep reading. (Job 12:1-14:22)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/21:

Bildad is the next friend who tries explaining to Job why he is suffering. He says if Job repents of all his wrongdoing, then the Lord will restore his prosperous state – “If you would earnestly seek God and make your supplication to the Almighty, if you were pure and upright, surely now He would awake for you, and prosper your rightful dwelling place.” Bildad falsely believes that living a morally good life is directly related to material wealth. 

Job responds, “But how can a man be righteous before God? If one wished to contend with Him, He could not answer Him one time out of a thousand. God is wise in heart and mighty in strength… For He is not a man, as I am, that I may answer Him, and that we should go to court together. Nor is there any mediator between us, who may lay his hand on us both.” Job is right. Man can not contend with God — we need a mediator. And that mediator is on the way!  Jesus Christ is coming to be the final sacrifice who will die on the cross for our sins and restore us into right relationship with the Lord. Later in the story, after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection, and ascension to heaven, Paul will say, “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5). However, the Mediator hasn’t arrived on the scene just yet, and Job has another friend eager to share some discouragement. 

Zophar, tired of Job proclaiming his innocence, says, “And should a man full of talk be vindicated? Should your empty talk make men hold their peace?” Zophar tells Job that he deserves worse than what he got – “Know therefore that God exacts from you less than your iniquity deserves.” 

Since the fall in the garden with Adam and Eve, we are all born sinners deserving of death, including Job and his three discouraging friends. However, God is merciful and is sending a Savior, His Son, to pay the price for our sin – “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). People in the Old Testament are saved by faith in the Lord and His promise to send a Savior, just as we are saved today by faith in looking back on what the Savior did for us on the cross. God does not operate by handing out rewards to those who act right and punishing the ones who don’t. Our worth and value is not based on performance; it is solely based on our standing with God by grace through faith.

Later in the story, Paul will say – “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purposes” (Romans 8:28). However, we learn from reading the book of Job, that there is way more going on behind the scenes in the spiritual realm. Therefore, we must walk by faith and not by sight, trusting the Lord with our lives in spite of difficult circumstances.

We have a few more days of listening to Job’s three unhelpful friends before a young man steps forward with some wise insight. Keep reading. (Job 8:1-11:20)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/20:

Today Eliphaz continues with more words of discouragement to Job. Eliphaz wrongly believes that Job’s suffering is directly related to his sin. He says to Job, “For wrath kills a foolish man, and envy slays a simple one. I have seen the foolish taking root.” Eliphaz is trying to reason Job’s suffering based on his own understanding and what he has seen. Then he says to Job, “Behold, happy is the man whom God corrects; Therefore do not despise the chastening of the Almighty.”

Eliphaz, who lacks understanding of the spiritual world, inflicts more pain on the already suffering Job by giving him terrible counsel. Therefore, Job responds, “To him who is afflicted, kindness should be shown by his friends…But what does your arguing prove?” Job is discovering that his friends can not provide the release from his pain that he is seeking. 

Not all suffering is directly related to our own personal sin, as we see here with Job. There is always way more going on behind the scenes that our finite minds cannot interpret. Although Eliphaz is speaking the truth — God does correct His children (Hebrews 12:10-11) — this truth is not helpful to suffering Job. 

Sometimes it is hard to understand God’s good plans and purposes for us in the midst of our suffering, but it doesn’t mean that He is not working for our good and His glory. However, Job can’t see that right now. So Job cries out to the Lord desiring death over pain – “So that my soul chooses strangling and death rather than my body. I loathe my life; I would not live forever. Let me alone, for my days are but a breath.” 

Job doesn’t know that his afflictions are from Satan and that the Lord is allowing it to accomplish His higher purposes. Job will have to trust God in the midst of his pain and wait on the Lord to act on his behalf. And He will! So keep reading. (Job 5:1-7:21)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/19:

“The account of Job is traditionally thought to have taken place around the time of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (2200-1800 BC), or shortly thereafter. However, it could have occurred as late as the Exile (during the sixth century BC)” –  Note from the OYCB. 

The story of Job answers several questions:

1) Can bad things happen to good people? Yes

2) Is God capable of doing evil? No

3) Is Satan the real enemy? Yes

4) Does God allow evil to accomplish His purposes and for His glory? Yes

5) Can the enemy only do what God allows? Yes

6) Is walking with the Lord always easy? No

7) Will it be worth it in the end? Yes

“There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil.” Also, he is a man of great possessions. From the very beginning of the story of Job, we see that Job is a righteous man as he comes to the Lord His way, by interceding for his children through substitutionary atonement – “he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, ‘It may be that my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.’ Thus Job did regularly.” However, we also see a conversation taking place in the heavenly realm of which Job is unaware. God allows Job to be tested by Satan and just like that, Job loses everything: his children, servants, all his possessions, and he is covered in painful boils. But God puts a limit on what Satan can do to him – Satan cannot take Job’s life.

Job’s suffering is so great that his own wife says to him, “Curse God and die.” However, Job responds, “‘You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?’ In all this Job did not sin with his lips.” 

Then Job’s three friends, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar, come to Job with good intentions of comforting him. However, their words end up bringing discouragement rather than encouragement because they try to rationalize Job’s pain. Job’s friends wrongly believe that Job’s suffering is directly related to his sinful actions. Since Job’s friends are clueless about what is going on behind the scenes in the spiritual realm, they will spend the remainder of their time with Job trying to convince him of this false truth. 

Therefore, we will have to bear along with Job listening to his discouraging friends for the next several days. But in the end, the Lord is going to appear and shed some light on Job’s situation, so keep reading! (Job 1:1-4:21)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/18:

Jacob is at the end of his life, having lived in Egypt seventeen years, when Joseph brings his boys to his bedside for a blessing. Jacob tells Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me, and said to me, ‘Behold, I will make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will make of you a multitude of people, and give this land to your descendants after you as an everlasting possession.’ And now your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine.” Then Jacob blesses the younger brother, Ephraim, over the older brother, Manasseh, saying that the younger shall become greater than the older. Joseph tries to get his father to bless the older one instead, but Jacob is adamant about his blessing. Although blessing the younger brother above the older brother would not have been the cultural norm, we have already seen with the story of Esau and Jacob that God’s plans often differ from the current culture. 

After blessing Joseph’s sons, Jacob blesses his own sons. Pay special attention to Judah’s blessing in Genesis 49:10 – “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; and to Him shall be the obedience of the people.” This blessing is a prophecy that the Messiah, the One God promised to send back in the garden (Genesis 3:15), will come through Judah’s descendants. In the Kingdom Era, the Lord makes a promise to King David, a descendant of Judah, that his throne shall be established forever pointing to the ultimate King, Jesus Christ, who is coming through this lineage. 

Before Jacob dies, he commands his sons to bury him in the cave Abraham bought in the land of Canaan where Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, and Leah are buried. “So the sons did for him just as he had commanded them. For his sons carried him to the land of Canaan, and buried him in the cave.” 

Now that Jacob is dead, the brothers begin to worry that Joseph is going to take revenge on them. However, Joseph assures them by saying, “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.” 

That is God – He turns evil into good! 

We end the reading with Joseph making the Israelites swear to take his bones with them when they leave Egypt. Then Joseph, at one hundred and ten years old, dies.

Soon we will enter the Exodus Era, but not before reading the book of Job. Tomorrow we meet Job, so keep reading! (Genesis 47:28-50:26)

From today’s reading in Tyndale’s One Year Chronological Bible dated 1/18:

Jacob is at the end of his life, having lived in Egypt seventeen years, when Joseph brings his boys to his bedside for a blessing. Jacob tells Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me, and said to me, ‘Behold, I will make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will make of you a multitude of people, and give this land to your descendants after you as an everlasting possession.’ And now your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you in Egypt, are mine.” Then Jacob blesses the younger brother, Ephraim, over the older brother, Manasseh, saying that the younger shall become greater than the older. Joseph tries to get his father to bless the older one instead, but Jacob is adamant about his blessing. Although blessing the younger brother above the older brother would not have been the cultural norm, we have already seen with the story of Esau and Jacob that God’s plans often differ from the current culture. 

After blessing Joseph’s sons, Jacob blesses his own sons. Pay special attention to Judah’s blessing in Genesis 49:10 – “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; and to Him shall be the obedience of the people.” This blessing is a prophecy that the Messiah, the One God promised to send back in the garden (Genesis 3:15), will come through Judah’s descendants. In the Kingdom Era, the Lord makes a promise to King David, a descendant of Judah, that his throne shall be established forever pointing to the ultimate King, Jesus Christ, who is coming through this lineage. 

Before Jacob dies, he commands his sons to bury him in the cave Abraham bought in the land of Canaan where Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Rebekah, and Leah are buried. “So the sons did for him just as he had commanded them. For his sons carried him to the land of Canaan, and buried him in the cave.” 

Now that Jacob is dead, the brothers begin to worry that Joseph is going to take revenge on them. However, Joseph assures them by saying, “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.” 

That is God – He turns evil into good! 

We end the reading with Joseph making the Israelites swear to take his bones with them when they leave Egypt. Then Joseph, at one hundred and ten years old, dies.

Soon will enter the Exodus Era, but not before reading the book of Job. Tomorrow we meet Job, so keep reading! (Genesis 47:28-50:26)