Originally posted: 9/05/2020
“But now those younger than I mock me…
9 And now I have become their taunt…
16 And now my soul is poured out within me;
Days of affliction have seized me.” (30:1, 9, 16).
Yesterday, Job was caught up in reminiscing about the days when he walked in fellowship with Almighty God.
“Oh that I were as in months gone by,
As in the days when God watched over me; (Job 29:1).
And we listened in as he recounted the blessed life he enjoyed and the reputation of respect he had rightfully earned.
But Now, that is not the place he finds himself at all.
Now, he is mocked by those younger than he, from disreputable families.
“But now those younger than I mock me,
Whose fathers I disdained to put with the dogs of my flock,” (30:1).
Now, he is looked upon as a standing joke, dishonored and spit upon.
“And now I have become their taunt,
I have even become a byword to them.
10 “They abhor me and stand aloof from me,
And they do not refrain from spitting at my face,” (30:9-10).
Now, he finds himself seized by affliction, anguish and pain without relief.
“And now my soul is poured out within me;
Days of affliction have seized me.
17 “At night it pierces my bones within me,
And my gnawing pains take no rest,” (30:16-17).
Now, his expectation for good and light is replaced by evil and darkness with no hope of comfort or relief.
“When I expected good, then evil came;
When I waited for light, then darkness came.
27 “I am seething within and cannot relax;
Days of affliction confront me.
28 “I go about mourning without comfort;
I stand up in the assembly and cry out for help,” (30:26-28).
Now: “6258. עַתָּה ʿattāh: An adverb meaning now, already, then, therefore. It refers to a certain point in time that has been reached… but also has a logical function at the same time: Since we are at this time and set of circumstances, therefore. So it is also a logical connector or indicator… It may stress the current time or situation…” Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance
And Now, at this certain point in time and in this set of circumstance, Job, therefore, anticipates his death as the only hope for a reprieve.
“For I know that You will bring me to death
And to the house of meeting for all living,” (30:23).
Consider Him in Our Now
I was so reminded of our Savior, Jesus Christ, Who experienced all that Job did, and more… willingly.
- He was mocked by those younger than Him, the Eternal God, from disreputable families.
- And after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand; and they knelt down before Him and mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” (Matthew 27:29).
- He was looked upon as a standing joke, dishonored and spit upon.
- Some began to spit at Him, and to blindfold Him, and to beat Him with their fists, and to say to Him, “Prophesy!” And the officers received Him with slaps in the face. (Mark 14:65).
- He was seized by affliction, anguish and pain without relief.
- Then He said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.” 39 And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will.”… 42 He went away again a second time and prayed, saying, “My Father, if this cannot pass away unless I drink it, Your will be done.” … 44 And He left them again, and went away and prayed a third time, saying the same thing once more. (Matthew 26:38-39, 42, 44).
- His expectation for good and light was replaced by evil and darkness with no hope of comfort or relief.
- About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46).
- And He anticipated His death as the only hope for a reprieve… for us.
- From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day, (Matthew 16:21).
- … “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).
And because Jesus willingly gave Himself for us, He ushered in His Now of true worship.
“But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers,” (John 4:23).
But still, I found myself relating to Job. And I’m sure you did too. This point in time we find ourselves in Our Now, presents numerous opportunities to long for our yesterdays. Days that were free of masks and worries of a pandemic. Days when national differences were disagreements that did not end up in vehement violence. Days when we still believed in hope for our country.
Being in the book of Job has been exactly the prescription needed for these days, for Our Now.
Do not say, “Why is it that the former days were better than these?”
For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this, (Ecclesiastes 7:10).
It’s dangerous when we focus all our thoughts and energy on what used to be. Rather than remembering the former days as better days, let us choose to consider Him in Our Now.
Because Now, we are members of His body.
Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it, (1 Corinthians 12:27 emphasis added).
And Now, we are His people and we have received His mercy.
for you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy, (1 Peter 2:10 emphasis added).
And Now, we can live in His peace.
Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen, (Romans 15:33 emphasis added).
How do we respond to Him in Our Now?
He has given us exactly what we need to fix our mind on Him in Our Now.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God, (Colossians 3:1-3 NIV emphasis added).
When Our Now is filled with difficulties and we can’t seem to see hope, we must choose to set our minds on things above as we look forward to His plans for our future.
“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope,” (Jeremiah 29:11).
His plans for our future and hope mean that one day, Our Now will be free from death, and all sorrow and pain.
“and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away,” (Revelation 21:4).
So, with that hope in mind, let us choose to consider Him in Our Now, in each and every moment of each and every day.
When Our Now tempts us to worry about tomorrow, we must choose to trust His plan and His peace for today and tomorrow.
“So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own,” (Matthew 6:34).
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful,” (John 14:27).
When anxiety threatens to rob us of peace in Our Now, let us choose to be thankful for His faithfulness.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus, (Philippians 4:6-7).
Thankfulness has a way of reminding us of all He has accomplished for us, all we have in Him and all He has for us in our future. And as we remember all this, we will surely overflow with joy, prayer and thanksgiving as we choose to daily consider Him in Our Now.
Rejoice always; 17 pray without ceasing; 18 in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus, (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).