Begin here ...

Job (incredibly) was thankful amidst his loss. But he was undone by it too. So he didn't wake with a grateful heart, as we've seen in Job 3, he was actually hoping not to wake up ever again. 

There may be times and seasons like that for us. 

William Cowper knew about that (we thought about his deep depressions last week) and he wrote this lovely song about trusting God when nothing is right with ourselves or the world. 

Let's speak to God together

It's Father's Day, so on our own or with others in our house (if we're able) let's: 

  • give thanks and pray for our own Dads, remembering before God all that He has given us and done for us through them. 
  • ask for help as many of us will be sad today ... either apart from our Dads and Grandads because of lockdown and distance or because we're grieving
  • ask for help for those whose Dads have caused hurt through not being there when they could or should have or in other ways have done damage. 

This Thursday is Gill Smith's mom's (Janet) funeral. Pray for Gill as the family as they mourn and the service to bring God's truth and grace to them all. 

Pray for God's help to us to be wise, loving, hardworking (in our different roles and situations ... according to our capacities!) and patient at this time when there is much unrest and uncertainty in our nation. May our speech in particular be gentle, truthful and grace filled. 

Pray for opportunities to speak to others about the difference trusting Jesus has made to our lives in lockdown and for Him to the topic of conversations in homes, over fences and on telephones this week. 

Job 15 (Listen)

Eliphaz Accuses: Job Does Not Fear God

15:1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said:

  “Should a wise man answer with windy knowledge,
    and fill his belly with the east wind?
  Should he argue in unprofitable talk,
    or in words with which he can do no good?
  But you are doing away with the fear of God
    and hindering meditation before God.
  For your iniquity teaches your mouth,
    and you choose the tongue of the crafty.
  Your own mouth condemns you, and not I;
    your own lips testify against you.
  “Are you the first man who was born?
    Or were you brought forth before the hills?
  Have you listened in the council of God?
    And do you limit wisdom to yourself?
  What do you know that we do not know?
    What do you understand that is not clear to us?
10   Both the gray-haired and the aged are among us,
    older than your father.
11   Are the comforts of God too small for you,
    or the word that deals gently with you?
12   Why does your heart carry you away,
    and why do your eyes flash,
13   that you turn your spirit against God
    and bring such words out of your mouth?
14   What is man, that he can be pure?
    Or he who is born of a woman, that he can be righteous?
15   Behold, God puts no trust in his holy ones,
    and the heavens are not pure in his sight;
16   how much less one who is abominable and corrupt,
    a man who drinks injustice like water!
17   “I will show you; hear me,
    and what I have seen I will declare
18   (what wise men have told,
    without hiding it from their fathers,
19   to whom alone the land was given,
    and no stranger passed among them).
20   The wicked man writhes in pain all his days,
    through all the years that are laid up for the ruthless.
21   Dreadful sounds are in his ears;
    in prosperity the destroyer will come upon him.
22   He does not believe that he will return out of darkness,
    and he is marked for the sword.
23   He wanders abroad for bread, saying, ‘Where is it?’
    He knows that a day of darkness is ready at his hand;
24   distress and anguish terrify him;
    they prevail against him, like a king ready for battle.
25   Because he has stretched out his hand against God
    and defies the Almighty,
26   running stubbornly against him
    with a thickly bossed shield;
27   because he has covered his face with his fat
    and gathered fat upon his waist
28   and has lived in desolate cities,
    in houses that none should inhabit,
    which were ready to become heaps of ruins;
29   he will not be rich, and his wealth will not endure,
    nor will his possessions spread over the earth;
30   he will not depart from darkness;
    the flame will dry up his shoots,
    and by the breath of his mouth he will depart.
31   Let him not trust in emptiness, deceiving himself,
    for emptiness will be his payment.
32   It will be paid in full before his time,
    and his branch will not be green.
33   He will shake off his unripe grape like the vine,
    and cast off his blossom like the olive tree.
34   For the company of the godless is barren,
    and fire consumes the tents of bribery.
35   They conceive trouble and give birth to evil,
    and their womb prepares deceit.”

(ESV)

Job 22 (Listen)

Eliphaz Speaks: Job's Wickedness Is Great

22:1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said:

  “Can a man be profitable to God?
    Surely he who is wise is profitable to himself.
  Is it any pleasure to the Almighty if you are in the right,
    or is it gain to him if you make your ways blameless?
  Is it for your fear of him that he reproves you
    and enters into judgment with you?
  Is not your evil abundant?
    There is no end to your iniquities.
  For you have exacted pledges of your brothers for nothing
    and stripped the naked of their clothing.
  You have given no water to the weary to drink,
    and you have withheld bread from the hungry.
  The man with power possessed the land,
    and the favored man lived in it.
  You have sent widows away empty,
    and the arms of the fatherless were crushed.
10   Therefore snares are all around you,
    and sudden terror overwhelms you,
11   or darkness, so that you cannot see,
    and a flood of water covers you.
12   “Is not God high in the heavens?
    See the highest stars, how lofty they are!
13   But you say, ‘What does God know?
    Can he judge through the deep darkness?
14   Thick clouds veil him, so that he does not see,
    and he walks on the vault of heaven.’
15   Will you keep to the old way
    that wicked men have trod?
16   They were snatched away before their time;
    their foundation was washed away.
17   They said to God, ‘Depart from us,’
    and ‘What can the Almighty do to us?’
18   Yet he filled their houses with good things—
    but the counsel of the wicked is far from me.
19   The righteous see it and are glad;
    the innocent one mocks at them,
20   saying, ‘Surely our adversaries are cut off,
    and what they left the fire has consumed.’
21   “Agree with God, and be at peace;
    thereby good will come to you.
22   Receive instruction from his mouth,
    and lay up his words in your heart.
23   If you return to the Almighty you will be built up;
    if you remove injustice far from your tents,
24   if you lay gold in the dust,
    and gold of Ophir among the stones of the torrent-bed,
25   then the Almighty will be your gold
    and your precious silver.
26   For then you will delight yourself in the Almighty
    and lift up your face to God.
27   You will make your prayer to him, and he will hear you,
    and you will pay your vows.
28   You will decide on a matter, and it will be established for you,
    and light will shine on your ways.
29   For when they are humbled you say, ‘It is because of pride’;
    but he saves the lowly.
30   He delivers even the one who is not innocent,
    who will be delivered through the cleanness of your hands.”

(ESV)

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