Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wednesday, March 18th: Job 32-33, 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 ~ Tammy

Today's passage from the Bible In a Year Reading Plan is Job 32-33, 1 Corinthians 11:1-16

Until this point, Elihu had remained silent, trusting that the older men would have wiser advice for Job than he would.  But, as Elihu says, wisdom is not dependent on age alone - a fact we should remember as well.

There is much truth in Elihu's speech.  He contends that the three friends are wrong in saying that Job is being punished for past sins.  Instead, he says, Job was sinning as a result of his suffering by becoming arrogant as he defended his innocence.  He also said that suffering is used by God to discipline, not punish, but to restore us and keep us on the right path.

Elihu wasn't completely right however.  He still implied that the correct response to suffering would also bring healing and restoration, and that it is always related to sin.  The truth is, that though we don't always know the exact reason for our suffering, we do know that it is all related to sin in general, due to the fall.  And that, as long as we live in this present world, we will suffer.  But God can, and will, use the suffering of those who love Him for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28).

Elihu was also wrong when he implied that God always answers us, we just don't always hear His answer.  In truth, God doesn't always answer all our questions - faith wouldn't be faith if we understood everything 100%, and as finite beings, it is impossible for us to understand the infinite mind of God.  Plus, sometimes the point of the test is not knowing why we're being tested - we must trust God's goodness even when we don't understand His plan.  We need to trust in Him, not our circumstances.

My Life Application Bible says this in regards to our 1 Corinthians passage....
This section focuses primarily on proper attitudes and conduct in worship...While Paul's specific instructions may be cultural (women covering their heads in worship), the principles behind his specific instructions are timeless, principles like respect for spouse, reverence and appropriateness in worship, and focus of all of life on God. If anything you do can easily offend members and divide the church, then change your ways to promote church unity. Thus Paul told the women who were not wearing head coverings to wear them, not because it was a Scriptural command, but because it kept the congregation from dividing over a petty issue that served only to take people's minds off Christ.

God ordained submission in certain relationships to prevent chaos. It is essential to understand that submission is not surrender, withdrawal, or apathy. It does not mean inferiority, because God created all people in His image and because all have equal value....  Thus God calls for submission among equals. He did not make the man superior; he made a way for the man and woman to work together. Jesus Christ, although equal with God the Father, submitted to him to carry out the plan for salvation. Likewise, although equal to man under God, the wife should submit to her husband for the sake of their marriage and family. Submission between equals is submission by choice, not by force. We serve God in these relationships by willingly submitting to others in our church, to our spouses, and to our government leaders..... Although there must be lines of authority, even in marriage, there should not be lines of superiority.

 Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Job 34-35; 1 Corinthians 11:17-34


Pamela said...

I heard once that God answers prayer three ways: Yes, No, and Wait. I think Job was waiting for a "isn't it true I'm innocent of this suffering?" answer and God was telling him to just wait.

My girls are currently in a musical and submission makes a good example in the can't have all lead characters to put on a show. You need other players to make the play. You also need stage hands, set constructors, pit band, lights, and sound to make a whole show. If no one submitted to a lesser role, there could not be a successful production. Each has a valuable contribution to the show.

Conrad said...

Offering counsel to someone older is not always easy. Despite been much younger Elihu was feeling the need to impart his wisdom onto Job.

Elihu was sincere with his words and provided a good example that as believers we should be burning with passion to challenge each other in love, regardless of age to keep them upright.

On the flip side, as we age we should be accepting of someone younger wanting to voice their counsel too.