October 25, 2015

Job 32-34
Job’s three friends now fell silent...

Then Elihu, son of Barakel, lost his temper..He blazed out in anger against Job for pitting his righteousness against God’s.  He was also angry with the three friends because they had neither come up with answers nor proved Job wrong...

”I am a young man and you are all old and experienced.  That’s why I kept quiet and held back from joining the discussion.  I kept thinking , ‘Experience will tell.  The longer you live, the wiser you become’  But I see I was wrong--

It’s God’s Spirit in a person, the breath of the Almighty One that makes wise human insight possible.  

The experts have no corner on wisdom; getting old doesn’t guarantee good sense.  So I’ve decided to speak up.  Listen well!!...

Look, I’m human--no better than you; we’re both made of the same kind of mud.  So let’s work this through together...

But let me tell you, Job, you’re wrong, dead wrong!  God is far greater than any human.  So how dare you haul him into court and then complain he won’t answer your charges.  

God always answers, one way or another, even when people don’t recognize His presence.  In a dream, for instance...Or, God might get your attention through pain... or you may fall on your knees and pray--to God’s delight!...This is the way God works.  Over and over again he pulls our souls back from certain destruction so we’ll see the light-& live in the light!!!....I’m going to teach you the basics of wisdom.....

Then Elihu continued...    Isn’t it just common sense --to put our heads together and figure out what’s going on here?...

So Job, use your head;  this is all pretty obvious.  Can someone who hates order, keep order?...If God is silent, what’s that to you?  If he turns his face away, what can you do about it?  But whether silent or hidden, he’s there, ruling, so that those who hate God won’t take over and ruin people’s lives.  

So why don’t you simply confess to God?  Say ‘I sinned, but I’ll sin no more.  Teach me to see what I still don’t see.  Whatever evil I’ve done, I’ll do it no more....All right-thinking people say--and the wise who have listened to me concur-- ‘Job is an ignoramus.  He talks utter nonsense.’...You’ve compounded your original sin by rebelling against God’s discipline.  Defiantly shaking your fist at God, piling up indictments against the Almighty God.”    

Matthew 21:1-21:22
When Jesus neared Jerusalem he sent two disciples with these instructions: “Go over to the village across from you.  You’ll find a donkey tethered there, her colt with her.  Untie her & bring them to me.  If anyone asks what you’re doing, say, ‘The Master needs them!’  He will send them with u.

As Jesus made his entrance into Jerusalem, the whole city was shaken.  Unnerved, people were asking “What’s going on here? Who is this?”  The parade crowd answered, “This is a prophet Jesus, the one from Nazareth in Galilee.”  

Jesus went straight to the Temple and threw everyone out who had set up shop, buying and selling...”My house was designated a house of prayer;  you have made it a hangout for thieves.” 

Now there was room for the blind and crippled to get in.  They came to Jesus and he healed them.

When the religious leaders saw the outrageous things he was doing and heard al the children running & shouting through the Temple “Hosanna to David’s Son!” they were up in arms & took Jesus to task.  “Do you hear what these children are saying?”  Jesus said,  "Yes, I hear them.  And haven’t you read in God’s Word, 'From the mouths of children & babies I’ll furnish a place of praise?”  Fed up, Jesus turned on his heel and left for the city of Bethany, where he spent the night.

Early the next morning Jesus was returning to the city.  He was hungry.  Seeing a lone fig tree alongside the road, he approached it anticipating a breakfast of figs.  When he got to the tree, there was nothing but fig leaves.  He said, “No more figs from this tree-ever! The fig tree withered on the  spot, a dry stick....

But Jesus was matter-of-fact: “Yes & if you embrace this kingdom life & don’t doubt God, you’ll not only do minor feats like I did to the fig tree, but also triumph over hugh obstacles...Absolutely everything, ranging from small to large,, as you make it a part of your believing prayer, gets included as you lay hold of God.