Friday, March 13, 2015

The Meaning of Life from Job 3 Job Cursed His Birthday

Job's suffering was so great that he cursed his day of birth in Job chapter 3. He revealed his deepest fear too. His suffering and desires for death become a good time for reflection for the meaning and purpose of life. Then, we can be better prepared to handle any challenges and even suffering in our own life.
With such great suffering, Job's mind can only focus on his present sufferings and pains. He cursed his day of birth, wishing that he be not born. If not, he wished he could die at birth and needed not to suffer. He then proceeded to tell us what he feared most had come to past. This 'fear', said many Word of Faith preachers, was the excuse that Satan used to attack him. They claimed that fear will bring forth that into reality. In some sense, it is true. But fear is given to us that we may take heed to prevent what we fear to come to pass. Fear is a good trigger for us to wise up and to run to God for guidance and solution.

Here are some questions and some answers for us to reflect on our own life:

1 Why did Job want to die?
  • too painful to live
  • not seeing any hope for the future

2 Why did Job not commit suicide?
  • don't have the permission from God?
  • still have God in mind and God is in charge of one's life and death
  • may not have the guts to do it?
3 What do you think is Job's view or purpose of life?
  • life is meant for joy and not suffering
4 What were the benefits of death according to Job's complains?
  • rest from all troubles
  • equality for all ranks and types
  • no more bullying?
5 What does it tell us about Job's view of life?
  • death is non-existence: no feeling, on knowledge?
  • there is no after-life?
  • there is no judgment after life?
  • There was no mention of heaven after death.
6 Did Job believe in a God? Why?
  • it shows his struggles - the present suffering from a good God
7 What are the important things in your life?
  • I do the right things to be worthy of God
  • I hope my family will be saved
  • Live life without any regret.
  • our life affects others, the legacy we left behind
8 What does a good life mean to you?

9 What is the most important thing in life?

10 What is the meaning and purpose of life?
  • worship & enjoy God
  • god as 1st
  • no idols. Idols are usually good things that become our top priority in place of God, such as:
    • pleasures
    • wealth
    • self-righteousness
    • children
    • reputation
    • legacies
    • health
    • work and living as worship, testimony
11 What is the area of Job's life that was used by Satan to attack him?
  • Fear. More specifically:
    • losing all his blessings
    • his blessings have become his god?
  • But by going through the sufferings, losing all his possessions and children, and yet without cursing God, he actually put God above the blessings. Through his suffering, God reveals to Job what Job had it all the time... Job worshipped God purely because God is Job's God. 

12 What is a good ending in life?

13 How to live life without regrets?

14 How should we handle disappointments and suffering in life?

  • If our sufferings are caused by our own sins, then early repentance will do.
  • But there are many sufferings are beyond our control, and we need to know how to accept and deal with them. If God allows it, there are purposes and lessons that we should learn.
  • Can we die to self and be more of and for God? Will we be able to submit to God's greater plan for the whole that we are willing to be sacrificed for the benefits of others such as the martyred for God?

Lim Liat (c) 13 Mar 2015

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