Vindicator

We finished reading the book of Job today. Our favorite verse in the book tells of God giving Job “double for his trouble.”

Job 42:10, “And the Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before.” Modern English Version

There are two things that God showed me: 1) His fortunes were not restored until after he prayed for his friends, and 2) God did the restoring.

God is our vindicator, (see Isaiah 54:17). When we are falsely accused, as Job was, we will not find restoration from our accusers. When God is our vindicator we do not have to file a “Defamation of Character Lawsuit.” God takes care of that for us.

Psalms 119:42, “Then I can answer anyone who taunts me, for I trust in your word.” New International Version

We don’t understand why God causes good men like Job to walk through a trial of fire. We don’t understand our trials. But the response is the same in both situations.

Speak the Word!

Find verses in the Bible that speak to your situation and recite those verses every day. Pray those verses over the situation. When the problem comes to your thoughts, ignore it, and speak the verses instead of allowing worry into your life.

God is in control. Rehoboam took poor advice and didn’t listen to the people. Ten tribes followed Jeroboam because the cause was from the Lord, (see 1 Kings 12:15).

2 Chronicles 10:15, “The king did not listen to the people, for the event occurred because of God, that the Lord might establish His word that He spoke through Ahijah the Shilonite to Jeroboam the son of Nebat.” Modern English Version

God honors His Word. When God vindicates us, he adds beauty for ashes. Job 42:13-15 tells of the sons and daughters born to Job after his testing.

Females were a possession, a bartering chip, and a way to increase riches or make political alliances. Most genealogy lists named the first son; not all sons, and they didn’t bother to record the number of daughters born, let alone their names!

But Job’s daughter’s were beautiful. Their beauty was famous. Their names are in the Bible. The names of Job’s sons, born before and after his testing, are not recorded! They received an inheritance along with their brothers.

“…Jemimah means ‘dove.’ Keziah means ‘cinnamon.’ Keren Happuch means ‘container of antimony’ (see note on Jeremiah 4:30).” New International Version Study Bible Notes on Job 42:14

 

“Antimony, a black powder used to enlarge the eyes and make them more attractive.” New International Version Study Bible Notes on Jeremiah 4:30

When God vindicates you He gives:

  1. Peace – Your sleep is sweet.
  2. Spice – He fills you with good things.
  3. Larger eyes – You can hold your head high and look out confidently.

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Questioned

We will all come face to face with God. He will question each of us. We will have to answer for our actions, attitudes, and the thoughts in our hearts.

Job 38:3 and 40:7, “Prepare yourself like a man; for I will question you, and you shall answer me.” Modern English Version

How do we prepare ourselves for that? We don’t. Jesus paid the penalty for our sin when he died on the cross. We accept his free gift and He redeems us.

Psalms 119:154, “Defend my cause and redeem me; preserve my life according to your promise.” New International Version

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Knows

Good die young. Innocent are falsely accused. Children turned into sex slaves. This world is full of evil. But God sees all, and all will stand before Him.

Job 34:25, “Therefore He knows their works, and He overturns them in the night so that they are destroyed.” Modern English Version

 

Isaiah 25:8, “He will swallow up death forever. The Sovereign Lord will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove his people’s disgrace from all the earth. The Lord has spoken.” New International Version

God knows our works. But our works will not help us on the Judgment Day. It is not what you do, it is “Who” you know.

Do you know the Lord Jesus Christ?

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Weighed

“There will always be people who speak ill of you. . . . God says that by His grace you’re going to prove your critics wrong, so stop listening to their negative predictions. . . . Jesus said, ‘You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free’ (John 8:32 New International Version). Renew your mind with God’s word (see Romans 12:1, 2). When God speaks a word over your life, as far as He’s concerned it has already been accomplished; it’s ‘a done deal.’ Now it’s your job to believe it, speak it, and walk in the reality of it each day.”

http://www.facebook.com/TheWordForYouTodayUSA/

 

Job 31:6, “Let me be weighed in an even balance that God may know my integrity.” Modern English Version

 

Psalms 119:38, “Fulfill your promise to your servant, so that You may be feared.” New International Version

 

Isaiah 54:17, “No weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment, you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their vindication is from Me, says the Lord.” Modern English Version

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Righteousness

Each day I read aloud the verses that tell me “Who I Am In Christ.”

…Romans 5:1 – I have been justified.

…Colossians 1:13-14 – I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins.

…Romans 3:22 – I am the righteousness of God by faith in Christ Jesus.

…Romans 8:1, 2 – I am free from condemnation.

…Colossians 3:1-4 – I am hidden with Christ in God.

I cling to my righteousness, not because of anything I have done, but because of everything Christ has done.

Job 27:5, 6, “God forbid that I should justify you. Until I die I will not put away my integrity from me. My righteousness I hold fast and will not let it go; my heart will not reproach me as long as I live.” Modern English Version

 

“What does it mean to ‘act in faith?’ 1) To agree with God’s Word and refuse to say anything that contradicts it. 2) To wait patiently, allowing God to fulfill His Word in His own way and on His own schedule.”

“Tony Evans’ Book of Illustrations”

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Tested

Some tests come as compliments. Will I give the glory to God? Will I take the credit for myself? Will I complain?

When a test is over, God and I talk about it. When I do not handle a test well, I feel like a failure and want to give up. He never lets me. He shows me something He is correcting or a weakness He wants to strengthen.

Job 23:10, “But He knows the way I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” Modern English Version

God made me the way I am. There is nothing I can do or say that surprises Him. Sometimes, it surprises me! (Did I say that out loud?)

Unfortunately, the only way to remove the impurities from gold is to keep the heat on. When the heat is on in my life, I know God is working on me.

The higher the heat, the purer the gold.

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Stronger?

There was a miscommunication at practice. (It happens when you are talking across a large platform.) I was playing the introduction in question. We weren’t together and everyone thought it was for a different reason.

I played that introduction so many times, I started to think I was doing it wrong! Finally, the music director came over to the keyboard and watched my hands. He said I was playing it right. But after hearing several people say “it’s wrong” you start to believe them.

Job 17:9, “The righteous also will hold to his way, and he who has clean hands will be stronger and stronger.” Modern English Version

 

“The guarantee Job asked for (v. 3) is not provided, so he feels that God is responsible for making him an object of scorn.” New International Study Bible Notes

Even those with clean hands grow weak. Those enduring a long battle get worn down. If we don’t hold them up in prayer and encourage them, they will start to believe the lies.

Isaiah 35:3, “Strengthen the weak hands, and support the feeble knees.” Modern English Version

The good news is – God will restore them!

“When God restores you, it doesn’t matter who’s fighting against you. When he raises you up, no one can keep you down.”

“The Word for You Today” fcoc.net

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Understanding

When I was a girl, I watched as my mother’s stomach grew round. I understood there was a baby growing inside her.

In Junior High, I learned about conception in sex ed. I understood how my brother grew in her belly.

It wasn’t until I gave birth to our first son that I truly understood the process. It broadened my understanding!

Age and experience are two ways to broaden your understanding.

Job 12:3, “But I have understanding as well as you; . . .” Modern English Version

Some understanding is God-given.

1 King’s 4:29, “God gave Solomon wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore.” New International Version

But what if you are young, inexperienced, and God hasn’t given you understanding beyond your years? Is there anything you can do?

Yes!

Psalms 119:32, “I run in the path of your commands, for you have broadened my understanding.” New International Version

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Injustice

The chapters we read today reflect the weight of Job’s sorrow and trouble.

He said:

  1. My grief and calamity are heavier than the sand of the sea, 6:2, 3.
  2. My words stick in my throat, 6:3.
  3. My spirit drinks poison and I feel terror, 6:4.
  4. I want to die, 6:8, 9; 7:15.
  5. I don’t have the strength to hope, 6:11.
  6. I am full of despair, 6:14.
  7. My brothers acted deceitfully, 6:15.
  8. My spirit is in anguish and there is bitterness in my soul, 7:11.
  9. I loathe my life and my days are empty, 7:16.
  10. Look away, let me swallow, 7:19.
  11. I can’t catch my breath, 7:18.

Our lives on earth could be compared to toddlerhood. We feel trials have destroyed our life, but we haven’t even started to live. Eternity is so long we cannot even grasp the concept.

A toddler blamed for something he did not do, will laugh about it when he is older. No matter what trials or tribulations we endure on earth – in heaven we will laugh!

Job 5:16, “So the helpless has hope, and injustice shuts her mouth!” Modern English Version

Those who serve God have a heritage from God. We have a book full of promises – the Bible.

Isaiah 54:17, “NO weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment, you shall condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their vindication is from Me, says the Lord.” Modern English Version

God promises:

  • Victory at the end of the trial.
  • Justice.
  • Condemnation of the accuser.
  • Vindication.

Trust Him. He gave Job double for his trouble.

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Blameless

In 2008, my life hit a low point. I stepped down from the job I loved. I could no longer play for church, go to concerts, act in the local community theater, wear contacts, or leave the house without taking steroids.

I asked God “Why?”

He was silent.

My friends stopped calling. My family went on with their busy lives. I was alone most of the time. I grew very close to God. He’s the only one who never left. I was like Jacob at Peniel, (which means “face of God”).

“In essence God told Jacob, ‘Now we can get down to business. Cooperate, and trust Me. I’ll make the changes you want, and I’ll bless you.'”

“God’s Answers to Life’s Difficult Questions” Rick Warren

I could relate to Job. I felt like I had lost everything, even though I had not. Eczema was my tormentor. I could understand why Job scraped himself with broken pieces of pottery.

“It also shows that God is in control and we are not, and that we cannot require God to give us a reason for what He chooses to do.” Modern English Version Introduction to the book of Job

When life changes this drastically, people assume you have committed a great sin. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Psalms 73 describes the wicked as:

  1. Boastful and prosperous, v. 3.
  2. Pain-free and fat, v. 4.
  3. Not in trouble or plagued, v. 5.
  4. Having more than a heart can wish, v. 7.
  5. Always at ease, v. 12.

Job lost all his children, his riches, his source of income, and lastly, his health. What did he do wrong? Nothing.

Job 1:1, “There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job. That man was blameless and upright, fearing God and avoiding evil.” Modern English Version

People accuse the innocent every day. We cannot look to this world for justice.

“Only in God’s courtroom can a person experience redress for such attacks.” New International Version Study Bible Notes on Psalms 5:9

Everything can go horribly wrong even when we are doing everything right. But, God is our vindicator. Trust Him. God gave back Job double for his trouble.

Hebrews 10:35, “So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you.” New Living Translation

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