In Job 7, we learn about Job’s pain and anguish he was going through. He described this in detail and also how his friends made him feel. So let’s begin with verse 1. It reads, 1“is there not an appointed time to man upon earth? are not his days also like the days of an hireling? As a servant earnestly desireth the shadow, and as an hireling looketh for the reward of his work: So am I made to possess months of vanity, and wearisome nights are appointed to me. When I lie down, I say, When shall I arise, and the night be gone? and I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day. My flesh is clothed with worms and clods of dust; my skin is broken, and become loathsome. My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and are spent without hope. O remember that my life is wind: mine eye shall no more see good. The eye of him that hath seen me shall see me no more: thine eyes are upon me, and I am not. As the cloud is consumed and vanisheth away: so he that goeth down to the grave shall come up no more. He shall return no more to his house, neither shall his place know him any more. Therefore I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.” (Job 7:1-11) There is so much to learn from these verses, but to begin, just know that Job was teaching us about the pains of life and then the death to come.
As to what Job was going through and taught us, we can learn that there is an appointed time for each person to die. Our days are numbered before the Lord. Some people die at an older age and others quite young. Some people have to suffer before death and others peacefully die in their sleep or instantly in a crash. As for those people who suffer, Job described how he felt by saying that while in pain, there were many nights where he got no sleep. He would toss and turn all night long and find no rest. Even when he is finally about to go to sleep, the day had already come. How many of you can understand how he was going through? Many of you I am sure. He mentioned how his skin was become broken and repulsive in how it appears. And because of the pain he was in, he was left without hope. This is how many people feel when they are suffering because of a chronic illness. He mentioned that soon he would die and not rise up. Even the people in his house and friends would soon forget him as time goes on. It was because of this feeling of ongoing death that he would not stop telling people how he is feeling, in order to find some sort of comfort. He would complain in the bitterness of his soul, while in these dark trials he is under, as he believed it was near the end of his life. How many of you can understand how Job is feeling? If so, know that God can comfort us, when all seems lost.
It was after Job mentioned how he was feeling, he told his friends how they were making him feel, and it wasn’t good. He said, 1“am I a sea, or a whale, that thou settest a watch over me. When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaints; Then thou scarest me with dreams, and terrifiest me through visions: So that my soul chooseth strangling, and death rather than my life. I loathe it; I would not live alway: let me alone; for my days are vanity. What is man, that thou shouldest magnify him? and that thou shouldest set thine heart upon him? And that thou shouldest visit him every morning, and try him every moment? How long wilt thou not depart from me, nor let me alone till I swallow down my spittle? I have sinned; what shall I do unto thee, O thou preserver of men? why hast thou set me as a mark against thee, so that I am a burden to myself? And why dost thou not pardon my transgression, and take away my iniquity? for now shall I sleep in the dust; and thou shalt seek me in the morning, but I shall not be.” (Job 7:12-21) As we just read, his friends were not doing him any good, but really causing him to be less hopeful then he would be if they were not there. Because of their accusations about Job and him being in pain because of his sin was causing him to be more distraught and not was not comforted at all. They were terrible examples of how to help someone in need.
Here are some key things to learn about Job’s friends and how they went and hurt Job instead of helping him. They spent their days spying on him, in order to make sure what Job was telling him was true. It was Eliphaz who scared him with his dreams and terrified him because of his visions. It caused him to want to strangle himself in suicide, rather than continue living. This is so sad to hear Job say this. Praise God that he didn’t go through with his thoughts of suicide. They caused him to hate his life and to not want to live any longer. He was left in an empty state where nothing could satisfy his soul. What his friends did that was absolutely horrible. Each time they visited Job, they only attempted to try him in his lies. Does this sound like what a true friend would do? Absolutely not. Therefore, he only wished that they would leave him alone and not return, for they were making him feel worse. By making him feel like he has sinned, they caused a burden to fall upon him. He also mentioned that tomorrow they may seek him, but he will already be gone because of death. Wow. Please learn from this encounter on what not to do with friends who are suffering. We should badger them or make them feel burdened, but attempt to relieve some of their pain. We do this by bringing them food, praying for and with them, and just letting them cry upon our shoulders. We can try to give wise counsel, but only if it is uplifting the person, not tearing them down.
Let us pray:
Oh Lord, I pray that I and other Christians will earnestly desire to show love unto our neighbors. That we will no longer be judgmental or badgering in how we treat people. Instead, put in us a kind and caring heart, that others will be comforted just being around us. Life is hard and many people are suffering in this dark world. So many of them have nowhere left to turn. Their well is empty. Their burdens are too vast and that they cannot find comfort in their trials. Lord, I know that I have family, friends, and brothers and sisters in the faith who are feeling this way right now. They are down and distraught because of the coronavirus and the fears that go along with it. Many of them also have a chronic illness, have lost their job, have financial issues, marriage problems, and more. This life can be so very hard and even I am going through a job loss. It would be nice if people that knew me would come and visit me. That I may be comforted also in these trying times. I know that life will get better and a better job will come to the table sooner than later. Until then, do I trust in You and welcome phone calls, texts, visits, and prayers. But I am not alone in this matter. Even now my wife’s mom is on hospice care. This has caused her to be in mourning, and I can only do so much to comfort her. Lord, this life is short and we don’t know when we will give our last breath. Therefore, I will never stop leaning on You for understanding, comfort, and hope that I need. If I need to be uplifted, there is always help around the corner when I call upon Your Name in prayer. You are always there for me. I love You, Jesus! You are my Lord and God. I give You praise and glory. Amen.
Let us read the Bible:
Note: Any Numbered References, found above, are listed below.