This is part of the 66 in 52 Bible Journaling Challenge. Over the course of the 52 weeks in 2018, I am focusing in on one verse from each book of the Bible with many others who have signed up to join me. Each week I will post a summary page with some thoughts about that week’s book(s) of the Bible along with some links that may help our reflection. Click here to sign up if you want to join us at any point along the journey! Click here to see where we’ve been so far!
The Big Picture of Job:
The book of Job, named after the key character in the book, starts out giving an interesting glimpse into a conversation between Satan and God. Satan claims that the only reason Job is following after God faithfully is because he has been blessed. If the material things in life, his family, and later on his health, were taken from him, Satan claims Job would walk away from God. Despite more tragedy and loss than we could imagine, Job remains faithful. Much of the book includes conversations between Job and three of his friends (and a fourth in later on). They don’t seem to get it though and blame Job for all the bad things that came upon him. They believe he MUST have done something wrong but that was not the case. While Job doesn’t go along with his wife’s suggestion to just “curse God and die” it does not mean Job didn’t have any questions. The last section is a series of conversation between God and Job where God reminds Job he is in control of everything, Job is humbled, and much that Job had lost was restored.
- JUSTICE – One huge theme in Job is justice. God’s justice is called into question, yet he proves himself faithful.
- PAIN – Any kind of pain imaginable is covered in Job: physical pain, grief, emotional pain, broken relationships and more.
- FAITHFULNESS – Satan doesn’t think Job will remain faithful. Job’s friends accuse him of not being faithful. Job’s wife struggles to be faithful in the face of grief and loss. Throughout the book we also see God’s faithfulness.
- GOD’S ALMIGHTY POWER AND CONTROL – Near the end of the book we see a few whole chapters where God declares His power and control in the world. Yet that is not the only place this theme arises. Even back in the conversations between Satan and God it is clear that God is completely in control. He set limits on how much Satan was allowed to mess with Job.
A Few Key Verses and Possible Reflection Questions/Prayers:
Some of us are planning to read through the whole book each week, while others are just focusing in on one verse (two this week since we’re in two books!). This section of the weekly intro post might help you narrow down a verse to reflect on for the week, but you do not have to choose one of these verse, pick any section of the book you want! These are just some ideas.”
- “Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped.” (Job 1:20)
REFLECTION: What is your normal first reaction in grief or suffering? What might it look like to make worship part of that response?
- “Then [Job’s] wife said to him, ‘Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!’ But he said to her, ‘You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?’ In all of this Job did not sin with his lips.” (Job 2:9-10)
REFLECTION: Describe a time when someone close to you challenged your faith and beliefs. What was helpful during that time to stay focused on God?
- “I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted. I had heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You, therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” (Job 42:2, 5-6)
REFLECTION: The word repent means to turn around and go the other way. What is one place where you see the need to repent in order to get your eyes back on Jesus this week?
- “I know that my Savior lives,and at the endhe will stand on this earth.My flesh may be destroyed,yet from this bodyI will see God.Yes, I will see him for myself,and I long for that moment.” (John 19:25-27)
REFLECTION: Job couldn’t be sure about a lot of things, but he claimed complete confidence in this fact: His redeemer lives and he will get to see Him.
God’s Grace in Job:
I’m a book like this, where a huge theme is God’s justice, it’s easy to miss God’s grace. While I could point to a few areas where it is clear (for example God’s restoration of what was lost at the end), as I think about God’s grace this time it comes in the not-so-obvious ways. If I faced the kind of loss Job did and then endured those kinds of conversations with people who were supposed to be my friends, I would only be able to get through by the grace of God. I believe the same was probably true for Job. God’s grace provided (and provides still today) the strength to get up each day in the face of trial and keep putting one foot in front of the other.
Some Other Resources:
- The Bible Project summary video of Job
- A Pinterest board with resources and pictures for Job
- UPDATED: The 66 in 52 Schedule and Tracking Sheet (Somehow the sheets got in the wrong order originally; this fixes that. Those were the only changes made.)
So now it’s your turn! Pick a verse and settle in this week, or read through the whole book. If you post any picture or blogs on social media, tag them with #66in52challenge so we can all share in this journey together!