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Where is God?

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  1. WhereisGod? Job 23:1-9

  2. We all need deep roots of faith.

  3. Suffering will come to us, for it came to Jesus.

  4. Suffering will come to us, for it came to Jesus. • “He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not” (Is 53:3, ESV).

  5. Suffering will come to us, for it came to Jesus. • Is 53:3. • “And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, ‘My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me’” (Mt 26:37-38, ESV).

  6. Suffering will come to us, for it came to Jesus. • Is 53:3. • Mt 26:37-38. • If God did not keep suffering away from his only Son, who am I that he’d keep it away from me?

  7. In our suffering, we often have questions for God.

  8. In our suffering, we often have questions for God. • “Why has the LORD defeated us today before the Philistines?” (1 Sm 4:3, ESV).

  9. In our suffering, we often have questions for God. • “Why has the LORD defeated us today before the Philistines?” (1 Sm 4:3, ESV). • “Why, O LORD, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?” (Ps 10:1, ESV).

  10. In our suffering, we often have questions for God. • “Why has the LORD defeated us today before the Philistines?” (1 Sm 4:3, ESV). • “Why, O LORD, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?” (Ps 10:1, ESV). • “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Mt 27:46, ESV).

  11. In this morning’s text, Job has a question for God.

  12. In this morning’s text, Job has a question for God. • “Where is God?”

  13. In this morning’s text, Job has a question for God. • “Where is God?” • Job’s friends provide accusations instead of comfort.

  14. In this morning’s text, Job has a question for God. • “Where is God?” • Job’s friends provide accusations instead of comfort. • In antiquity, people believed that if you suffered, God was punishing you.

  15. In this morning’s text, Job has a question for God. • “Where is God?” • Job’s friends provide accusations instead of comfort. • In antiquity, people believed that if you suffered, God was punishing you. • Therefore, Job’s friends firmly believe that he has sinned & is being punished.

  16. “Is not your evil abundant? There is no end to your iniquities. For you have exacted pledges of your brothers for nothing and stripped the naked of their clothing. You have given no water to the weary to drink, and you have withheld bread from the hungry. The man with power possessed the land, and the favored man lived in it. You have sent widows away empty, and the arms of the fatherless were crushed. Therefore snares are all around you, and sudden terror overwhelms you, or darkness, so that you cannot see, and a flood of water covers you” (22:5-11, ESV).

  17. In this morning’s passage, Job has had it.

  18. In this morning’s passage, Job has had it. • He’s fed up with his friends’ character assassination & he’s tired of God’s silence.

  19. In this morning’s passage, Job has had it. • He’s fed up with his friends’ character assassination & he’s tired of God’s silence. • Job really just wants God to show up & establish his integrity.

  20. Job 23:1-9

  21. DiscouragedA DefendantDistant

  22. Job is DISCOURAGED vv 2-3

  23. “Today also my complaint is bitter; my hand is heavy on account of my groaning. Oh, that I knew where I might find him, that I might come even to his seat!” (vv 2-3, ESV).

  24. Job is very discouraged.

  25. Job is very discouraged. • His complaint is bitter.

  26. Job is very discouraged. • His complaint is bitter. • He has a heavy hand.

  27. Job is very discouraged. • His complaint is bitter. • He has a heavy hand. • A “heavy hand” in the Old Testament refers to discouragement.

  28. Job is very discouraged. • His complaint is bitter. • He has a heavy hand. • A “heavy hand” in the Old Testament refers to discouragement. • “We have heard the report of it; our hands fall helpless; anguish has taken hold of us, pain as of a woman in labor” (Jer 6:24, ESV).

  29. Why is Job so discouraged?

  30. First, his friends’ accusations have been hard.

  31. First, his friends’ accusations have been hard. • Eliphaz: “Remember: who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off? As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same. By the breath of God they perish, and by the blast of his anger they are consumed” (4:7-9, ESV).

  32. First, his friends’ accusations have been hard. • Eliphaz: “Remember: who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off? As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same. By the breath of God they perish, and by the blast of his anger they are consumed” (4:7-9, ESV). • Zophar: “Do you not know this from of old, since man was placed on earth, that the exulting of the wicked is short, and the joy of the godless but for a moment?” (20:4-5, ESV).

  33. Imagine being in Job’s shoes!

  34. The people of God need to be a comforting people.

  35. The people of God need to be a comforting people. • That was Jesus’ way.

  36. The people of God need to be a comforting people. • That was Jesus’ way; when a leper asked to be healed, Mark records, Mark records, “Moved with pity, [Jesus] stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, ‘I will; be clean’” (Mk 1:41, ESV).

  37. The people of God need to be a comforting people. • That was Jesus’ way (Mk 1:41). • Jesus expects compassion from his disciples.

  38. The people of God need to be a comforting people. • That was Jesus’ way (Mk 1:41). • Jesus expects compassion from his disciples. • “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (2 Cor 1:3-4, ESV).

  39. The people of God need to be a comforting people. • That was Jesus’ way (Mk 1:41). • Jesus expects compassion from his disciples. • 2 Cor 1:3-4. • “Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep” (Rom 12:15, ESV).

  40. Let us comfort the hurting!

  41. Second: Job could be very discouraged with God.

  42. Second: Job could be very discouraged with God. • It doesn’t seem that Job is upset with God over his suffering, per se.

  43. Second: Job could be very discouraged with God. • It doesn’t seem that Job is upset with God over his suffering, per se. • But, he’s quite upset that God hasn’t appeared to vindicate him.

  44. Maybe we’ve faced similar discouragement with God.

  45. Maybe we’ve faced similar discouragement with God. • We’ve done the right thing, but that’s made us the subject of scorn & ridicule.

  46. Maybe we’ve faced similar discouragement with God. • We’ve done the right thing, but that’s made us the subject of scorn & ridicule. • In the end, Job gets his vindication.

  47. Maybe we’ve faced similar discouragement with God. • We’ve done the right thing, but that’s made us the subject of scorn & ridicule. • In the end, Job gets his vindication: God says to Eliphaz, “My anger burns against you and against your two friends, for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has. Now therefore take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and offer up a burnt offering for yourselves. And my servant Job shall pray for you, for I will accept his prayer not to deal with you according to your folly. For you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has” (42:7-8, ESV).

  48. In the end, we, too, shall get vindication from God.

  49. In the end, we, too, shall get vindication from God. • “God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (2 Thess 1:6-7, ESV).

  50. In the end, we, too, shall get vindication from God. • “God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (2 Thess 1:6-7, ESV). • Vindication may not come in this life, but it shall come.