Series: The Mind of God
Message: Thinking God’s Thoughts
Preacher: Mark Johnson
Refresh: Open with prayer. Read or listen to Psalm 33:10-17.
Read: 1 Corinthians 2:14-16 - As you read in the NLT translation, note 1-3 insights/questions that arise.
Reflect: The story of Job is a real enigma. Although we are given a view behind the scenes, and see the battle between God and Satan being played out, Job has no clue what is going on. He loses his wealth, he loses his health, and he loses his children. His friends come to “comfort” him. They tell him that he must be a vile and wicked person to be suffering so, and his wife recommends that he curse God and die.
Yet the thing that bothers him the most through all of this is the apparent loss of his friendship with God. What he misses most is understanding and sharing in the thoughts of God. His theologian friend, Eliphaz, tells him that God puts no trust in His creatures (Job 15:15), and is punishing Job for not fearing Him. But Job just wants to talk things over with God. Take a moment to read Job 23:3-6.
But God is silent. At least He is silent for a long time. Finally, God comes to address the questions of Job and the arrogant answers of Job’s theologian friends. And He appears at first to side with the theologians. For four chapters He overwhelms them with His might and power, leading Job to finally confess that he has “uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know,” (Job 42:3, ESV), and he repents “in dust and ashes” (Job 42:6, ESV). His friends exchange high fives, and wait quietly for their merit badges. Take a moment to read Job 42:7, 8.
Job, whom God has called a perfect man, has been totally clueless, while “thinking the thoughts of God after Him.” Although God’s ways are “higher than (Job’s) ways,” dealing with the issues in the Great Controversy, Job has indeed “said of (Him) what is right.” He has been a true friend. He has defended God in the face of overwhelming adversity, even though he has been left in the dark. His friends have claimed that God does not trust His creatures, earthly and heavenly, but God has trusted in Job, and Job has been proven to be trustworthy. He has, indeed, thought God’s thoughts after Him.
Respond: Pray to be trustworthy.
Research: Job’s friends, and Christ’s disciples, believed that God blesses the good and punishes the wicked. Doesn’t the First Testament support this belief?