2022 Study Summary 32: Yet Will I Trust In Him
Job 1–3; 12–14; 19; 21–24; 38–40; 42
“Yet Will I Trust In Him”
Job 1. Job, a just and perfect man, is blessed with great riches—Satan obtains permission from the Lord to tempt and try Job—Job’s property and children are destroyed, and yet he praises and blesses the Lord.
Job 2. Satan obtains permission from the Lord to afflict Job physically—Job is smitten with boils—Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar come to comfort him.
Job 3. Job curses the circumstances of his birth—He asks, Why died I not from the womb?
Job 12. Job says, The souls of all things are in the hands of the Lord, with the ancient is wisdom, and the Lord governs in all things.
Job 13. Job testifies of his confidence in the Lord and says, Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him, and He also will be my salvation.
Job 14. Job testifies of the shortness of life, the certainty of death, and the guarantee of a resurrection—He asks, If a man die, will he live again?—Job answers that he will await the Lord’s call to come forth from the grave.
Job 19. Job tells of the ills that have befallen him and then testifies, I know that my Redeemer lives—Job prophesies that he will be resurrected and that in his flesh he will see God.
Job 21. Job admits that the wicked sometimes prosper in this life—Then he testifies that their judgment will be hereafter in the day of wrath and destruction.
Job 22. Eliphaz accuses Job of various sins and exhorts him to repent.
Job 23. Job seeks the Lord and asserts his own righteousness—He says, When the Lord has tried me, I will come forth as gold.
Job 24. Murderers, adulterers, those who oppress the poor, and wicked people in general often go unpunished for a little while.
Job 38. God asks Job where he was when the foundations of the earth were laid, when the morning stars sang together, and when all the sons of God shouted for joy—The phenomena of nature show the greatness of God and the weakness of man.
Job 39. Man’s weakness and ignorance are compared with God’s mighty works—Does man even know how the laws of nature operate?
Job 40. The Lord challenges Job, and Job replies humbly—The Lord speaks of His power to Job—He asks, Hast thou an arm like God?—He points to His power in the behemoth.
Job 42. Job repents in dust and ashes—He sees the Lord with his eyes—The Lord chastises Job’s friends, accepts Job, blesses him, and makes his latter days greater than his beginning.
How can I better understand the Book of Job?
Biblical Job is considered by many to be one of several “non-Israelite” prophets, (Balaam and his father, Job, Eliphaz the meridional (from the “south”), Bildad the Shuhite, Zophar the Naamathite, and Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite). The essence of the Book of Job focuses on the Lord, rather than on Job or any other individual. The agency that mankind was given allows a choice of following the Lord and developing Godlike characteristics or following our own inherent aptitudes and achieving less than the potential God gave us. On theother hand, the following quotes provide Jewish insights about Job: “The Book of Job is the story of one man, Job, and his acceptance of the sufferings God brings upon him and his family. But the problem of the final meaning and message of the book has over the centuries aroused a wide variety of responses. To some sages of the Talmud (written Jewish interpretation of biblical law and Jewish theology) and Midrash (Jewish and Talmudic commentary on the scriptures), Job is to be regarded as one of the few truly God-fearing men of the Bible, the most pious non-Jew who ever lived. To others he was a blasphemer.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How can Jewish culture and Hebrew-language insight help me see the Savior better?
Remember, the Hebrew language, old and new, has few words and is constructed in a way where words can have multiple meanings. The context of sentences can be more significant than individual meanings of a word. The Hebrew Old Testament has 8,679 different words. The English Old Testament contains 14,564 different words. Linguistic practices such as mnemonics, morphology, syntax, phonetics, and semantics affect the meanings of groups of words. Antithesis is a literary device that refers of two opposing elements through the parallel grammatical structure. Hebrew uses many “opposites” to create contrasts that are used to highlight meanings. The chapters of Job are full of these practices. Here are some thoughts that come to mind in just the recommended assigned study chapters:
Job 2, “And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life.”
Job 3:25, “For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me.”
Job 12:22, “He discovereth deep things out of darkness, and bringeth out to light the shadow of death.”
Job 13:1-2, “Lo, mine eye hath seen all this, mine ear hath heard and understood it. What ye know, the same do I know also: I am not inferior unto you.”
Job 14: 22, “But his flesh upon him shall have pain, and his soul within him shall mourn.”
Job 19: 14, “My kinsfolk have failed, and my familiar friends have forgotten me.”
Job 21:14-16, “Therefore they say unto God, Depart from us; for we desire not the knowledge of thy ways. What isthe Almighty, that we should serve him? and what profit should we have, if we pray unto him? Lo, their good is not in their hand: the counsel of the wicked is far from me.”
Job 22:21-25, “Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. Receive, I pray thee, the law from his mouth, and lay up his words in thine heart. If thou return to the Almighty, thou shalt be built up, thou shalt put away iniquity far from thy tabernacles. Then shalt thou lay up gold as dust, and the gold of Ophir as the stones of the brooks. Yea, the Almighty shall be thy defence, and thou shalt have plenty of silver.
Job 23: 11, “My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.
Job 23:14, “For God maketh my heart soft,”
Job 24:24, They are exalted for a little while, but are gone and brought low; they are taken out of the way as all other . . .”
Job 38: 4, Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? . . . When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
Job 39:2, Canst thou number the months that they fulfil? or knowest thou the time when they bring forth?
Job 40:10, “Deck thyself now With majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.”
Job 42: 12, So the LORD blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning . . .”
Satan is allowed to tempt, yet God always redeems!
This is a God-given gift to mankind, “What you think about, happens!” (Both, positive and negative)
From darkness (burial) comes light (resurrection.)
Teaches that a Prophet is allowed to “sink to new heights.”
Teaches the Savior’s infinite atonement.
The Savior is abandoned at Gethsemane.
Those that seek wealth lose God in their lives.
Those that seek God find wealth in their lives.
Being exalted by mankind is short-lived.
There was a joyful pre-earth life!
Amos 3:7, Daniel 2:19, “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He revealeth . . .” (everything) to His prophets
Surround yourself with the beauty and being of the Lord.
Isaiah 61:7, “. . . they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.”
What brings about “wisdom?”
“Because of the experience of the aged, old age and wisdom are some- times regarded as going together. Thus, throughout the Bible and Talmud, the word “elder” means judge, leader, or sage. On the other hand, the Book of Job also stresses that there are young men who are wiser than old men. Nevertheless, respect for the aged is always a mitzvah (a commandment as well as a blessing) . . .” “The Talmud states that Moses wrote the Book of Job and records a difference of opinion as to whether Job ever really existed, or whether the story is a parable.” “Job, like Abraham, had open doors on all four sides of his house so that strangers might have easy access. Breaches of hospitality, on the other hand, were considered punishable offenses.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.) Some may remember a Primary Song titled “Our door is always open.” The simple text is anonymous, sung to a French folk tune.
How does Job handle the opposites of suffering vs. blessings?
“The Book of Job is one of the Ketuvim (biblical writings of the prophets), which make up the third part of the canon of the Bible and is a profound expression of religious experience written by an unknown poetic genius, probably around the fifth century B.C.E. The problem posed by the book is how to reconcile seemingly unjustified suffering with belief in God who is all-powerful and just.” “The book’s hero, the gentile Job (whose name possibly derives from ay’av—(“where father?”) was an inhabitant of the land of Uz; his wealth in livestock and slaves exceeded that of any other man among the Edomites. Job was a righteous man and would offer sacrifices to expiate any possible sins of his ten children. Seeing his piety, an accusing angel argued with God that the true test of Job’s loyalty required that he be stripped of his wealth. God agreed to test His subject, and so the story tells how Job loses all his property, his children and then his health and is reduced to disease and ruin. Yet in his suffering he utters no word of complaint against God. On the contrary, he declares “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb and naked again will I depart. The Lord has taken what the Lord gave. The names of the Lord are blessed. “His wife attempts to persuade him to denounce God but he replies “Can we both accept the good from God and not accept the bad?” His three friends Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar, journey to his home to console him in his sufferings, which they take to be a punishment for sin, but Job adamantly rejects their comforts as illusory and denies that he is guilty of anything. He cries out against his fate and challenges God directly to justify what appears to him as mere spite. How can God require purity from creatures who are by nature impure? God replies that man is impertinent to seek answers for his suffering. Job ultimately acknowledges his ignorance in the face of the inscrutable divine, “seeing I am but dust and ashes. “God commends his stoic humility and restores him to wealth and health.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What can I learn from “the good may suffer at least as much as the bad?”
“Opinions regarding the meaning of the Book of Job have varied throughout the ages. To some sages of the Talmud (Jewish theological writings) and Midrash (now written Jewish oral interpretations), Job was one of the few truly God-fearing men of the Bible, while to others he was a blasphemer. According to one sage of the Talmud, Job served God out of love, while another thought his motivation was fear. Maimonides (Sephardic Jewish philosopher, 1138-1204) thought that Job’s anguished questioning of God arose from an inadequate understanding of the divine.” “Modern commentators are equally divided as to what the author of the Book of Job wanted to tell his readers. For in His reply to Job from the whirlwind, God majestically ignores the questions which most trouble the hero. To say that man is presumptuous is no real answer to the question of why innocence suffers. The book appears to make three main points: that there is no causal connection between earthly suffering and moral evil (that is, the good may suffer at least as much as the bad), that the vast beauty, power and complexity of Nature are a proof of an omnipotent order beyond human understanding, and that the gulf between man’s actual fate and what he thinks he deserves is a fact about which God prefers to remain silent.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How do I view difficulties, as a strengthening test, or a punishment?
“Job’s patience in his suffering has become proverbial and the phrase “the patience of Job” is used to refer to anyone with a great deal of patience. In the Aggadah (non-legalistic traditions and legends), most references to the Book of Job do not consider its hero to have been a real person. Job’s sufferings are considered to be a test rather than a punishment, and he is frequently compared with Abraham, who was also tested.” “In its original application in the Bible, “Satan” appears not as a proper name, but rather as a common noun denoting an adversary who opposes or obstructs. Its related verb also has the function of describing the actions of an antagonist in the most general sense. However, in the later books of the Bible (Zechariah and Job), “The Satan” can be found as the accepted name of a particular angel—a prosecutor in the heavenly court. Thus it is “The Satan” who asks for and is given permission by God to test Job’s piety by inflicting upon him a whole series of personal ordeals. He is, however, definitely subordinate to God and unable to act without divine permission.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How can suffering be a “sinking to new heights?”
“One of the most serious challenges to religion is the problem of suffering. If God is all-powerful and good, as Judaism claims He is, how is it possible that He allows His creatures to suffer? This is not a new problem. The Bible is aware that suffering and pain are characteristic of human existence and many of the books of the Bible are concerned about the theological issues involved. The Book of Habakkuk, when it deals with one of the aspects of the problem, says that “the righteous man must live by his faith.” This seems to mean that it is beyond the ability of human intelligence to understand the question and that man must have faith that God is doing the right thing . . .” “The rabbis of the Talmud and the medieval Jewish philosophers were also troubled about the problem of suffering. Some thinkers suggested that the innocent suffer in this world so that their share in the world to come will be greater, but other philosophers rejected this idea. Another solution suggested was that suffering comes on a man in order to warn him to mend his ways and that “when a man sees that he is suffering, let him examine his deeds” The rabbis of the Talmud believed that it is a great religious virtue to bear one’s suffering “with love,” i.e., patiently and without becoming rebellious.” “Whatever the solution to the theological problem of suffering, Judaism absolutely forbids inflicting suffering on other people and even on animals. Also, no man may ignore the suffering of others but must do everything in his power to help remedy the situation. This applies to physical suffering, to poverty and to psychological suffering. Further- more, no man has the right to enjoy himself if the rest of the community is suffering.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How can affliction bring me closer to appreciating my Savior?
In Judaism today, there is a definite movement away from an atonement for sins by someone else. Obviously, the effort to steer away from Jesus who paid the ransom as the atoner has amplified this. That is probably why the Book of Job in Jewish thought is viewed as is expressed above. The Latter-day Saint view is beautifully expressed as follows. “When the prophets speak of an infinite atonement, they mean just that. Its effects cover all men, the earth itself and all forms of life thereon, and reach out into the endless expanses of eternity. “The word atonement,” it is written in the Compendium, “signifies deliverance, through the offering of a ransom, from the penalty of a broken law. The sense is expressed in Job 33:24: ‘Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom.’ As effected by Jesus Christ, it signifies the deliverance, through his death and resurrection, of the earth and everything pertaining to it, from the power which death has obtained over them through the transgression of Adam. Redemption from death, through the sufferings of Christ, is for all men, both the righteous and the wicked; for this earth, and for all things created upon it.” (Compendium pp. 8-9.) (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, Pg.64)