When All Seems Hopeless

Key Verse: “If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.”
—Job 14:14

Selected Scripture:
Job 14; 32:1-8; 34:10-15; 37:14-24

OFTEN TIMES WHEN calamities happen, it can seem that things will never get better. These texts from Job teach that even when we feel hopeless, we can count on God to be good, just, and all-powerful.

Job said, “Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble. He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.” (Job 14:1,2) Having a hope in a resurrection from the dead, he says, “O that thou wouldest hide me in the grave, that thou wouldest keep me secret, until thy wrath be past, that thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me!”—vs.13

One day when Satan and the sons of God presented themselves before God, the Adversary responded to God’s questioning concerning his travel, and said he had been roaming in all the earth. “The Lord said to Satan, Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.”—Job.1:8, New American Standard Version

Satan remarked, you protect not only him, but his entire family and all his property. You make him successful in all that he does; but, if you take away what he owns, he will curse you to your face. The Lord replied, “Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand.” (vs. 12) Then Satan left God’s presence.

Job’s three friends—Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar—heard of the evil that had come upon him, and they came together to comfort him. But his friends assumed, since sin brings suffering, that Job was guilty of sinning, and his friends unfairly convicted him. In despair, he said ‘If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.’ In these words of our Key Verse, Job raised the question of whether there was hope of a future life after death. This was evidently a rhetorical question, as he had previously given clear indication of his resurrection hope. (Job 14:13) He also states in the Key Verse that he was waiting in faith until his resurrection change from death to life would take place.

Another man named Elihu rebuked Job along with his three friends. Elihu became angry with Job for refusing to acknowledge his sin. He rebuked the others for not giving adequate rebuttals to Job’s answers. Then Job is asked a series of questions, “Hearken unto this, O Job: stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God. Dost thou know when God disposed them, and caused the light of his cloud to shine? Dost thou know the balancings of the clouds, the wondrous works of him which is perfect in knowledge?” (Job 37:14-16) Job is asked his answers to these and other questions, and is humbled regarding God’s wisdom.

Afterward the Lord restored Job’s fortune to him by giving him twice as much as he had before. God blesses Job with seven more sons and three more daughters and 140 more years of life. These special blessings to Job, after he had learned the needed lessons from his experiences, are but a foretaste of the blessings to come to all mankind in Christ’s kingdom after having learned the valuable lessons of this present life of sin, suffering and death.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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