Pastor Joe Miller IV
Being the good American that I am, I have become very skilled at television watching and, of course, an expert at Gunsmoke and The Andy Griffith Show. Over the years of watching and studying these two shows, I have come to the realization that the beginning of the episode is essential to understanding the body and conclusion of the episode. In fact, maybe it's the most important part because it sets the stage for the rest of the program. In order to understand how the plot unfolds, you need that beginning scene to truly understand the storyline, purpose for each scene, and ultimately the conclusion of the story. The principle of the importance of the beginning scene is no different in life. In fact, God Himself at the beginning knew that the introduction and history of mankind would set the backstage of how mankind should view life and the purpose of it.
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
It is when I forget this that life and the struggles and trials that come along with life become overwhelming, and I forget my purpose. My mind wanders, and I become distracted.
I am afflicted and ready to die from my youth up: while I suffer thy terrors I am distracted.
There is a lot of talk going on right now (controversies, conspiracies, etc.) about what is happening around us, and it is disappointing to see God’s children being part of this wave of discussion. It is unprofitable to the furthering of the kingdom of God and to the perfecting of His saints. I am not saying that discussing worldly topics is bad, but I don't like to see discord among the children of God. There is a lack of hope and peace because we as God‘s children are trying to figure out things that are too high for us. I see a God that is grieved. It reminds me of a man in the Old Testament, and not just any man.
There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.
Job was a great man, even one we all could look up to, but he found himself in a situation that “took faith, not understanding.” For 35 chapters, we find Job and his friends doing exactly what a lot of Christians unfortunately are doing right now: reasoning within their own minds, like the disciples did in Matthew 16:7, 8. And Jesus said, "O ye of little faith." But Job and his friends' discussion come to an abrupt end in Job 38:1-3.
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said, Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge? Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me.
I love how God described their way of thinking and words in verse two. The phrase ‘darkeneth counsel’ or an impaired view. Discussing things that you don’t understand. Having opinions lacking knowledge, truth, and God‘s point of view. But most importantly, what did God remind them of starting in verse four?
Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.
The next four chapters, starting out with the reminder, “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth?” A reminder by God: My earth, My creation, My will, My pleasure.
Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.
The application: when we find ourselves in a situation similar to Job, we ought to react humbly like Job.
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay mine hand upon my mouth.
Hear, I beseech thee, and I will speak: I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me. I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.
Additionally, we must quit trying to be God and be more like Jesus, by bringing peace and hope to an unsaved world and loving one another.