Daily Worship

A Transforming God

October 24, 2021 1
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Job 42: 1-6, 10-17 (NIVUK)

1 Then Job replied to the Lord:

2 ‘I know that you can do all things;
    no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
3 You asked, “Who is this that obscures my plans without knowledge?”
    Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
    things too wonderful for me to know.

4 ‘You said, “Listen now, and I will speak;
    I will question you,
    and you shall answer me.”
5 My ears had heard of you
    but now my eyes have seen you.
6 Therefore I despise myself
    and repent in dust and ashes.’

10 After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before. 11 All his brothers and sisters and everyone who had known him before came and ate with him in his house. They comforted and consoled him over all the trouble the Lord had brought on him, and each one gave him a piece of silver and a gold ring.

12 The Lord blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the former part. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand donkeys. 13 And he also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 The first daughter he named Jemimah, the second Keziah and the third Keren-Happuch. 15 Nowhere in all the land were there found women as beautiful as Job’s daughters, and their father granted them an inheritance along with their brothers.

16 After this, Job lived a hundred and forty years; he saw his children and their children to the fourth generation. 17 And so Job died, an old man and full of years.

How can an encounter with God be anything other than life changing? Bartimaeus’ life was turned around completely. A life spent in darkness, dependent on the charity of others has given way to the prospect of a new way forward following Jesus.

Job was familiar with this experience. He has endured personal suffering aggravated by misguided counselling. He has been overwhelmed, overwhelmed by feelings of abandonment and hostility towards God. Yet he comes face to face with the reality of God in His wisdom, truth and power and Job’s life is transformed.

This is an experience not tied to any time. Charles Colson was one of Richard Nixon’s closest advisors when he was President of the United States. He was known as Nixon’s ‘hatchet man’. He was described by one journalist as ‘the evil genius at the heart of an evil administration.’ After the Watergate scandal which led to Nixon’s impeachment and resignation Colson was imprisoned. During that time he underwent a conversion experience and when released became involved in a number of high-profile Christian projects. Chief among them was the establishment of Prison Fellowship, an international outreach to prisoners. In his writings and his willingness to debate Colson became one of the foremost Christian witnesses in the public square.

He did not, however, find it easy to live down his past. Even in the Church people were sceptical of his conversion. Saul of Tarsus had the same experience. People had difficulty believing that the former persecutor of the Jesus movement had become its passionate promoter. But his friend Barnabas was able to testify that this man had met with the risen and ascended Jesus. He had heard His voice and obeyed His call. Saul who became the apostle Paul was later able to write that he had become a ‘new creation.’

This experience is not tied to any time. The God who came into the life of Bartimaeus, Job, Paul and Charles Colson will never cease His outreach to human hearts, seeking to reconcile men and women with Him.

 

PRAYER:

 

Lord Jesus,

Never let us emerge from meditation on Your Word, worship with Your people, prayer silent or expressed without something having changed within us and the resolve to go forward in deeper devotion to You and stronger commitment to Your Kingdom. Amen.