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ARISE MY LOVE! (EASTER 2016)

On the walk to Emmaus, Jesus took two grieving disciples

through the Old Testament to show them pictures of why the Messiah would need to die and rise again.

Perhaps two of those pictures were from

Job and the Song of Songs.

WHEN JOB WAS SUFFERING

HE PRAYED THAT GOD WOULD LET HIM DIE,

BUT THEN AN ICY FEAR CAME, FOR JOB LIVED IN THE TIME OF GENESIS WHEN LITTLE WAS KNOWN ABOUT THE AFTERLIFE.

SO JOB ASKED:

IF A MAN DIES, SHALL HE LIVE AGAIN?

THE SPIRIT OF THE LIVING GOD CAME AND REVEALED TRUTH TO JOB.

SUDDENLY JOB CRIES OUT:

YOU WOULD CALL, AND I WILL ANSWER YOU;

YOU WOULD LONG FOR THE WORK OF YOUR HANDS.

DO YOU SEE?

WHEN A CHILD OF GOD DIES,

GOD MISSES THE ONE HIS HANDS MADE.

HE WILL CALL YOUR NAME,

LIKE HE CALLED THE NAME OF LAZARUS,

AND YOU WILL RISE!

JESUS WAS THE FIRSTFRUITS.

LOW IN THE GRAVE HE LAY,

AND HIS FATHER MISSED HIM.

ARISEMYLOVEPREPARE YOUR HEART FOR THIS RESURRECTION DAY WITH THIS:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMHyGh0RgCA

IF CHRIST HAS NOT RISEN, OUR HOPE IS IN VAIN. BUT CHRIST HAS RISEN. AND ONE DAY GOD WILL CALL THE NAMES OF HIS CHILDREN AND WE WILL RISE WITH NEW BODIES, LIKE HE HAS. THE ONES YOU LOVE WHO DIED IN THE LORD WILL RISE. WE HAVE SOMETHING TO CELEBRATE!

WE SEE A SHADOW OF THIS IN THE SONG:

Spring-bible-quote-with-Blossoming-Almond-Van-Gogh

RESURRECTION DAY!

1.What stands out to you from the above and why?

 

Monday-Thursday Bible Study

2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.

Job3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)

Derek Kidner writes: “The very presence of such prayers in Scripture is a witness to His understanding. He knows how men speak when they are desperate.”

4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12? 

5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.

6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — find it in Job 14:15-15-17.

7. The next time the Spirit of the living God breaks into Job’s lament is in 19:25-27. Find and describe it.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=mj-pZQ_XjyU

8. Job was a righteous man who nearly died from his suffering, and his story has been a comfort to millions. But there is a GREATER JOB in JESUS.. Compare their suffering, their victories, and their impact.

9. Read 1 Corinthians 15:12-26 and explain why it is vital to our faith that Christ arose.

ICORINTHIANS15d162fa19004761ea53ed895acceae909

10. Read Song of Songs 2:10-14 in light of foreshadowing your resurrection. What new things do you see?

www.youtube.com/watch?v=S2urjlelpuM

11. USE THIS PASSAGE AS A SPRINGBOARD OF PRAISE TO GOD.

FRIDAY: INTRODUCING IMPACT360.ORG — A GREAT RESOURCE FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY. WATCH THIS FIVE MINUTE VIDEO AND COMMENT:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwXx_EQuQdQ

SATURDAY:

12. What is your take-a-way and why?

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218 comments

  1. The grave will not hold the KING! Hallelujah! Because God the Father has called His Son to arise, so the Son calls us/me (weep here) to arise! One day!

  2. One of my favorite verses is from this walk to Emmaus, when after He has spoken these truths to them, and “they said to each other, “Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?”  luke 24:32 There is an unmistakable power in the presence of our Lord, and when He speaks truth to our hearts, we are changed by it, and we are filled with the desire to “arise”…arise my soul arise! Praying for a blessed Easter for all~

    1. Oh Lizzy, I LOVE that part of the Emmaus conversation also!!  They did not quite recognize who He was at first, but they knew there was something about Him and what he was saying that made their “hurts burn” within them!  Indeed, “There is an unmistakable power in the presence of our Lord, and when He speaks truth to our hearts, we are changed by it, and we are filled with the desire to “arise” 😀

  3. The magnificent hymn, Arise My Love !!! No moire suffering…
     
     
     
     
     
     

  4. At 6:06 am,  as I had just woken from a terrifying, vivid dream (I have been struggling with poor sleep lately),  I heard a ‘text signal’ go off on my phone.   My oldest son had texted,  ‘He is Risen’   (before he is off to his long and stressful day of work at a fine dining restaurant.  The food service industry is brutal on employees on Christian holidays.  They have 800 people to serve overpriced food to today and it seems so antithetical to what Easter truly is.  And he knows and feels this inside.)   Most of you know that my oldest has left the faith in which he was raised and practices alternate spirituality.   It is more complicated than I could or would ever express in this space.  And yet……another sign of hope!   I believe that in his heart of hearts, he knows that Jesus stands alone. (fairest of ten thousand).  Another sign of God’s Sovereignty.  In ways I can’t fully understand, I believe in my heart that Jesus is wooing him.  

    1. oh Wanda–yes! This is HOPE! rejoicing in thanks with you this Easter morning!

    2. Wanda, I do believe your son carries this truth inside of him…it is undeniable.

    3. Oh, Wanda. This is SO hope-filled. Praying for your son.
       
      My brother also has left the faith, yet this week when I emailed him to tell him that our aunt from Florida had passed away, he sent me a lovely note back. It may not seem like much, but the last time one of our aunt’s died and I let him know via email, I received a catty email rebuke from his wife that left me reeling. Long story, but I cried with relief that my brother is at least being kind to me.  I see hope in that. 
       
      “He is still risen and working”, wooing … Happy Easter all.

      1. Diane – this is hope, too! saying a prayer for you and your brother. 

      2. Thank you Lizzy, Susan and Diane.  Oh, how I wish we could all sit down and talk.  But the encouragement is so appreciated.  Diane, I am so glad for your relief and the hope that you see too, in your brother’s response.  

      3. oh Diane–I remember praying for the pain you endured in your relationship–so thankful for this praise on Easter! Praying for complete restoration and peace!

      4. Diane this is beautiful and I am sure is HUGE for you:) Precious glimmers of hope

      5. Diane……amidst the heartache…..HOPE!!!  As I shared in my reply to Wanda……I know what it is to wander far from God…..KNOWING “it’s all true!”.  But praise God, His grace is Soooooo much bigger than my sinful heart!!  And the shape of His grace to my live was indeed a “severe mercy”……I lost my mom, but I gained CHRIST.  Til my last breath I will never stop being “amazed”!!!  

    4. Wanda- hope! =)
      (PS this is one reason we do not go out to eat or shop on Sundays…!)

      1. Thank you, Jill.  I appreciate your sensitivity.  There’s so much more to the restaurant world than meets the eye.)

    5. Wanda,  I can just imagine how thrilled you were to get that text message from your son!     I rejoice with you!

      1. Thank you, Deanna.  🙂  yes!

    6. Wanda What a beautiful sign of hope. Those glimmers are so special. I agree with you Jesus is wooing him. 

      1. Thank you Liz, Rebecca and Jackie..….You all encourage me.  I keep your names and families in my prayers too. It is a comfort to know that while we can’t see the whole picture, we know the One who does.  

    7. Wanda, I wish I would have read this yesterday but so glad to hear this!! HOPE! :)))  I can relate to you in this and this encourages me!

    8. Wanda – like Rebecca, I wish I would have seen this yesterday!  But it is sweet to have this overflowing heart of joy this “day after Easter” as I read your words here…….and oh…..I can remember so well being in his shoes!  My experience, as the rebel daughter of Christ loving, faithful followers was that on days like Easter I would rise….and I just felt this INCREDIBLE “homesickness”…..for a faith that I KNEW (in my head!) was true!  You end with this:  “I believe in my heart that Jesus is wooing him.”  I do too.  I really do.  

  5. 1.What stands out to you from the above and why?
    WHAT DEE SAW!  And my heart is burning! 🙂
    SO JOB ASKED: IF A MAN DIES, SHALL HE LIVE AGAIN? THE SPIRIT OF THE LIVING GOD CAME AND REVEALED TRUTH TO JOB. SUDDENLY JOB CRIES OUT: YOU WOULD CALL, AND I WILL ANSWER YOU; YOU WOULD LONG FOR THE WORK OF YOUR HANDS.
     
    ….AND SONG OF SONGS 2:11 –ARISE MY LOVE, MY BEAUTIFUL ONE AND COME AWAY FOR BEHOLD THE WINTER HAS PASSED; THE RAIN IS OVER AND GONE. THE FLOWERS APPEAR ON THE EARTH, THE TIME OF SINGING HAS COME.
     
     

  6. 1.What stands out to you from the above and why?    Oh!  The insight from Job.  It made me gasp with wonder.  And Job had already astonished me with his statement,  ‘I know that my Redeemer lives and on the earth will take his stand’.  (19:25)   In the time of Genesis…..without the help of prophets or scrolls.  What a pure testimony of the Creator calling the name of his creation; his beloved,  for Job to know this!  

  7. 1. What stands out to you from the above and why?
     
    Oh the mention of the disciples on the Emmaus road…I took my daughter this morning and went to my former church for their Easter Service, and wouldn’t you know, the sermon was on this text from Luke’s gospel? And, as the pastor opened the Scripture and preached, I felt my heart burning within me, being stirred by His Word. I can only imagine how their hearts burned within them as Jesus unfolded the Scriptures to them…they pleaded with Him to stay a little longer with them…they knew there was still one “missing piece”…(the pastor said) when He ripped the bread and gave to them, their eyes were finally opened. And so must we, too, take hold of that bread personally. Do we hear it once again (didn’t we just celebrate Christmas? Now another Easter…) and not let our hearts be stirred? May it never be!
     
    Hope you all have a Blessed Easter!

  8. Arise my Love was so spine-tingling. My husband is in the hospital since Maundi Thursday, barely communicating — not verbally since then. Please pray for Jim. Influenza A, dehydrated, low sodium and potassium due to two meds he was taking. Doctors and nurses and respiratory therapists have been trying  for two days to remove his ventilator, but he is so congested that they won’t yet. I praise our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ for His love which allowed the nails to pierce him, for His triumph over the grave in resurrection Glory, for His promise that His mercies are new every morning. By His stripes we are healed.
    Thank-you for posting this, Dee. It does bring hope.

    1. Chris–I am headed out of town, but did see this come through and wanted to tell you I will pray for your husband! Lord, we ask that You would give wisdom to the doctors, and bring quick healing to Jim’s body–please restore his health, allow the ventilator to be safely removed, for Your glory we ask this in Your Name, Amen~

    2. Chris, I see this is an older post, but I am praying for Jim right now and wondering if you could update and let us know how he is. 

    3. Chris I too missed this post as I miss many:( I get lost here sometimes. Praying for your husband now and I Praise Him right along with you. What a testimony to others as you have a great need and are praising the one who can meet this need.

  9. What struck me in the intro was the Newsboys song? I am not fully sure why but I had never interpreted the song from a personal perspective before. It is so amazing to hear “Arise, my love, the grave no longer has a hold on you” and to see God calling to me. So thrilling! The grave no longer has a hold on me, because of what Christ has done for me. I am called by Christ to arise and follow.

    1. agreed, Diane.   I’ve heard the song before but not seen the whole meaning of the words.  Powerful.  

  10. 1. What stands out to you from the above and why? “You would long for the work of your hands…”
    God longs for me – wow.
    I am the work of His hands – wow.
     I was intrigued to read in context this verse  and the following verses were wonderful : ” Surely then you will count my steps but not keep track of my sins  my offenses will be sealed up in a bag; you will cover over my sin.”

  11. We presently have a severe thunderstorm rolling in — can hear the thunder, so I will be brief.      The very beginning words of Dee’s post about the disciples being on the Road to Emmaus stuck out at me. Last week when we were asked about a picture of Jesus that we love, I said it was the scene on the road to Emmaus.   It was such a wondrous event that they could be discussing with Jesus, telling Jesus about himself, because they didn’t recognize Jesus until he ate with them and broke the bread.   Also I was very touched by the song, Arise My Love.   It is like it had a double meaning for me,  one was that God cared for Jesus and told him to arise, but also that same invitation awaits me when I die.   Very, very powerful.   

  12. Derek Kidner’s quote is so good.  It is too bad that it takes so little for me to be desperate.  Being tired and then facing a disappointment is enough.
     
    5.  Job stops venting into the air and turns to God, asking for God’s intervention.  It is so important to turn to God as soon as we recognize that we are either venting or moaning.
     
    6. I couldn’t see the Spirit breaking in here; looking forward to how others saw it.
     
    10.  The resurrection in SS2:10-14  I’d never before read these words thinking resurrection.  But from the grave to hear Him saying “arise, come with Me”  Wow!  The winter (the cold, hard, dark, seemingly endless time) is past, the rains (all the tears and sorrow of life) are gone.  Flowers appear; there is renewal.  How utterly beautiful!

    1. Mary – I hadn’t seen your comment on #6 when I wrote my response….glad I was not the only one who was stumpted by the question!  🙂  

  13. Arise my love my beautiful one. and come away, for behold the Winter is past; the rain is over and gone, the flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come. Song of Solomon 2:11 This gave me such hope today as I read it.

  14. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week. Friday night I got to go to Laura’s church and watch her and and a few other ladies dance. It was so beautiful. It was a lovely service. I got to meet her cute little grandson. I wish I could meet all of you in person someday:) Late yesterday afternoon I had come from a disturbing conversation with my husband and was very grieved in my heart as far as my part in what had taken place and I pulled up to where I get my mail and right at the same time another woman who I know had pulled up ( she too is a Christian) I just at that moment was feeling alone and as we were having some casual talk I could feel the tears just welling up and she noticed and she prayed with me. I just really felt like the Lord was showing me He was there by the timing of this all taking place. His love and care for me AMAZES AND BLESSES me! 

    1. Liz – how I have come to love you!  You are so refreshing as you don’t sugar coat the truth…..you don’t try to pretty up the way things are.  But you are constantly craving more of HIM….come what may.  This blesses me so.  “I need a Holy Spirit muzzle” is one that will stick with me!!  🙂  And I know how otherworldly those moments can be where He brings someone to us….most unexpectedly…to pray.  I have a favorite thrift shop that I have frequented for years.  It is SO compelling…..they play Christian music…usually hymns…..quietly in the background….and it is so very clean, creative and pleasant!  It is not unusual for me to “retreat” to this little shop from time to time….just to soak in the atmosphere of our loving Father.  A couple of years ago I was so very broken….I was going through the pants rack with tears just rolling down my face….and sweet, sweet E, the manager there, just quietly came alongside me and said something like “oh my dear child…..may I help?  may I pray for you?”.  The dam burst and I just began to babble…..”my daughter’s fiance died and I am pretty sure he never knew the Lord, she doesn’t know the Lord and she is SO sick….and so grief stricken…..” and on and on I went!  This incredible saint just gathered me up in her arms – right there in the middle of it all!! – and began to pray.  My goodness…..very few times in my life have I so experienced the arms of Jesus around me so piercingly….and oh, how I NEEDED Him!!!!!  Her words were His words, I’m certain.  They poured upward to Abba and downward over me like sweet ointment to my wounds.  I cannot explain it well….but healing on a much deeper level became evident from that day on!  It was a stupifying gift of His GRACE…..His presence…..He just never ever loses track of us…..crying in the pants rack!!!  Or wherever!!  

      1. Jackie, I never will be able to convey how much your posts resonate with me, but some day…

      2. Jackie thank you for this beautiful post. Oh yes He meets us when we need Him in so many ways even at a pant rack! I am praying we can be those who meet others in their times of need just as He has met ours with others. You have been one of those people in my life and I thank you:) I echo Dawns words below.

  15. I said, “I will guard my ways,    that I may not sin with my tongue;I will guard my mouth with a muzzle,    so long as the wicked are in my presence.”2 I was mute and silent;    I held my peace to no avail,and my distress grew worse.3     My heart became hot within me.As I mused, the fire burned;    then I spoke with my tongue: Psalm 39: 1-3
    I have written this scripture multiple times in my journal and this so closely relates to a desperate moment I had yesterday afternoon. I need a Holy Spirit muzzle.
     

    1. Oh Liz! This scripture is just what I need right now! Thank you for posting it and I am going to try to memorize this one! SO important….”a Holy Spirit muzzle!”

  16. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.
     
    Liz mentioned coming to our service on Friday night; how blessed was I that she came! SO kind of her, as I have had a rough few months and have wondered how to pull through without giving up. Life is hard just living sometimes, and a few emotional issues came up during this time as well. I do see the light today, and I pray I will not have to endure what I have again (don’t feel sorry for me; I tend to bring it on myself….the situation has been exacerbated with my daughter and grandson here). I now know what my breaking point is and I will not agree to so many commitments  for myself in the future.
     
    Anyway, my meeting with God this week was the Good Friday service we had, where my sweet dancers danced Amazing Grace, my chains are gone. I have had a hard time getting our group to commit because some of the ladies have young children and are so very busy all the time, some are away, and some have injuries. My partner has been away in Quebec since January doing missionary work teaching dance at the “Qhop” (the Quebec House of Prayer). I wanted to keep our dance in the forefront at the church so I decided to pull a piece of choreography that was nearly complete and beg a few dancers to dance! Two of my faithful dancers agreed and then, one of our faithful dance class members (who had never danced in front of an audience) said she wanted to try! We didn’t have enough time to meet all together for each rehearsal, so we would post our videos on our private fb page and practice at home! I think Friday nights performance was just beautiful! It all came together lovely. He met us there, in that moment. It wasn’t really about the dance, it was the beauty of the message we conveyed. I’m so glad Liz got to experience our work with us! Thank You Lord for meeting me that night.

  17. 3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)
     
    Job says that man is not long for this earth, and wants to be left alone because of it.
     
    I feel like both the Job scripture and the psalm are saying to let the writer enjoy himself while he can here on earth, before he dies and won’t have earth to enjoy Anymore; almost like they think that that is the end and there is no more….in those days they didn’t have the hope of Jesus, right? They didn’t know about resurrection, right?

      1. Oh Laura…..Dee’s words bring much wisdom.  “So hard to draw boundaries with those we love.  I can only imagine how much harder it is when special needs are involved.”  In answering you Laura, Dee really encouraged my weary heart too! 🙂  The “special needs” in all of our lives are unique to us and our families, our circles of relationships…..but prayer bathed boundaries are GOOD and wise.  

  18. 3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)
    Job is hopeless-desperate. He is looking at the reality of life-that we are born in sin a flower that fades and we slowly die and in-between birth and death our lives are full of trouble. At the end he tells God to look away from him and depart till he has put in his time..He must feel forsaken by God..Just as in Psalm 39 David tells God to look away from him so that he may smile again before he dies and is no more.   They are both desperate for it seems they think once they die that is it.

  19. 4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12? 
    That when a tree dies it still has roots and when water hits the roots it sprouts to life again and can live for hundreds of years. 
     
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.
    Instead of accepting there is no life with God after death-he presses into God and pleads with Him to remember him when he is in his grave and asks if there is life after death, and that he will wait until his renewal has come. It seems to me this is a desperate plea-a turn from lament to pressing into God further-a crying out of a desire to be near him after death..Lord is there life after death? If there is remember me in my grave for I will wait until you renew me!  I am guessing Job was desperate to be with God after death.

  20. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this Holy Week. I had specific struggles this week, wrestling in my heart with God over past wounds and present difficulties…. I listened to Mike Reeves on Thrusday and Friday night and it was truth vs. my warped thinking. Of course, truth won. I so appreciate the competent, scripture based preachers that God has brought into my life to speak LIFE, truth. Sometimes our eyes just won’t see what is in front of us in our Biibles but God will use a back door to our mind/heart through another’s words based on scripture.

    1. OH dear, dear Jill.  I love how you show God’s persistence in getting to our hearts!!  Back doors, windows…..down the chimney!!!  But always as you said “based on Scripture”.  And I couldn’t help chuckling at these words of yours “past wounds and present difficulties”…..it sounds like the title of a book….our sojourn here on earth….Pilgrim’s Progress?  You packed so much that I love to think on in your paragraph here!  🙂  Thanks.  

  21. 3. Read a job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare cerse6 to the ending of Psalm 39.) Job is lamenting, not in,y that his days are numbered, but that they are full of “trouble”…. And that God will open his eyes on him and Job is certain he is unclean. Job asks God to look away that He may “enjoy his day.” Psalm 39 echoes this: “Look away from me that I may smile again before I depart and am no more.” 
     
    So I guess the obvious question is why did they want God to look away? There is the impression that God sees their sin and they feel condemned because of it to the point that they cannot enjoy their lives. Usually we see cries for God to SEE us, not to unsee us….Job and David are humble and aware of God’s holiness and their iniquities. Is there awareness of an afterlife? Or an understanding of consequences for actions?

    1. Dee- interesting perspective…. My initial reaction is that they know the only way to have (eternal) peace is to not be judged by God standard and the only way for that to happen is for God to not look at them. Job 14:3 (“…bring me into judgement with you…) and v.4 (Who can bring a [ritually] clean thing out of an unclean? No one) seems to point to this awareness….? 
       
      I was was going to add to my answer here that I was reading in other translations and the phrase in verse 14:6 “like a hired hand” seems to have an implication of fulfilling an obligation of contract – another way to say our days are numbered.
       
      Last thing: Psalm 39 also echoes the idea of being a temporary guest on this earth (a sojourner)…

      1. Jill, I like that you are picking up on the “hired hand.”  What a farm phrase!  I grew up hearing about hired hands, especially one on the farm where my mom grew up.  Mom always emphasized that he was like “one of the family.”  I think she needed to emphasize that because we also heard the phrase used in a derogatory manner (i.e., the person either couldn’t get his act together or wouldn’t settle down enough to own farmland); it could be a low status job.  Amusing  now because now big farms have employees rather than hired hands, and these aren’t low status.  So, if hired hands = employees, I am a hired hand.  Explains a lot 😉 

  22. 1.  What stands out to you from the above and why?
     
    The appearance of Job in this week’s study just lights a fire in my heart!  Though I had long appreciated Job’s place in the Scriptures as one who we could look to in times of trial, I LIVED in the book of Job for a long, long time a few years ago.  I came to the book of Job with much resistance – I simply did not WANT to read this wonderful/horrible account!  But I was drawn into this richness by the Spirit like a moth to a flame….and indeed I began to know the Refiner’s fire in new and wondrous ways.  It was the only season of my life when I remember just LONGING to die – EXCEPT that I could not fathom leaving my daughter who was in tremendous distress and need……it was the most powerful and piercing time of my life in the sense of KNOWING that the Lord would not let me go….He just kept telling me in a myriad of ways….but most particularly through the book of Job…..that He was right here with me.  That this very torturous path was the one that He had ordained for me.  Called me to. He assured me that I DID NOT NEED TO UNDERSTAND.  That I needed to TRUST in His LOVE, His greatness, His everything…..that when all else in this life is stripped away……He is my God.  

    1. OH my goodness!  I did NOT mean to imply that I suffered anything like Job did!  When I said that I “lived” the book of Job I meant that I soaked in that portion of Scripture!!!  Nor did I mean to imply that my faith looked anything like the firmness of his!! It was more like Job became my FRIEND…..and I cannot WAIT to meet him one day!!!!!

      1. I understand what you mean, Jackie.   And as you’ve told your story here and have referred to how much Job’s story and how God met him…..met you,  I’ve seen the evidence of that refiner’s fire even though I didn’t know you before this time.  But your DEPTH of love for the authority of scripture and your simultaneous heart of compassion for those who are going through trials,  resonates that God has done a mighty work in you.  And is still doing that.  Your testimony,  Nila’s recommendation for ‘A Sacred Sorrow’ which has a concise but profound summary of Job,  and the other times that Dee has referenced Job here, have all worked together to make my own understanding of the message of the book, grow by leaps and bounds.  I used to also be afraid of it and mostly, ‘just didn’t get it’.  It seemed too complicated, with all the different voices.  But the message has become so much more clear (and sacred…..to use Michael Card’s words) to me, since I began interacting here.  

        1. Hmmm…. I’ve always liked Job (not that I necessarily “got it”).  Maybe it was sorta in a “misery loves company” or “he had it worse” way.  It was SoS that scared me to death!!

        2. Renee..…I am just now starting to ‘get’ the Song of Songs.  🙂    
          (had to reply to myself this time)

      2. Jackie-lol..:)) I do hope we know you well enough to know that you wouldn’t imply that! 🙂 I love how we extend Grace to one another here.

    2. jackie this post is powerful! “…that he was right there with me all along. That this. Erg tortuous path was the one ordained for me. Called me to. He assured me that I did not need to understand…” Thank you!

      1. Should say…”that this very tortuous…” Ugh! Stupid auto correct!

  23. 2.  Share a new insight or a way God met you this Holy Week.
     
    “When a child of God dies, God misses the one His hands made.  He will call your name, like He called the name of Lazarus, and you will rise!”   Yesterday I only had time to read this week’s offering very rapidly….but this really gave me the tingles!  It’s kept coming back to me and along with this thought always comes the verse in Psalms 116;15  “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.”  Precious.  That Hebrew word for precious means “costly as precious stones….”.  I think then of Jesus telling us that where our treasures are, there will our hearts be.  And I am God’s treasure, precious to Him….His HEART is with me!!!!!  🙂  Gill’s commentary on this verse includes this:
     
     “Saints are precious to him, living and dying; there is something in their death, or that attends it, that is delightful to him, and of high esteem with him; as when they are in the full exercise of grace at such a season; when they die in faith, and have hope in their death; and their love is drawn out unto him, and they long to be with him;  besides, they die in the Lord, and sleep in Jesus, in union with him; with whom he is well pleased,  and all in him; and they die unto him, according to his will, and are resigned unto it; and so glorify him in death, as well as in life.  It is the time of their ingathering to him; at death he comes into his garden, and gathers his flowers, and smells a sweet savour in them; their very dust is precious to him, which he takes care of and raises up at the last day….”  
     
    This from Romans 14:7-9:  “For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.  For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord.  So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.  For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.”  
     
    And from our sermon at church yesterday….one of the most victorious verses!  in Luke 24:5, the angel says to the women at the tomb….”….Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen……”  Hallelujah!!  He is risen indeed.  

  24. 2……and I neglected to add that I had a PRECIOUS opportunity to share yesterday with my Jewish friend…..of how my HOPE is in my risen Lord!!  It was a SWEET moment that just welled up out of me!!  If you think of N., please PRAY for her!!!!!  She admits that she is looking for the kind of hope in life that I seem to have (her words)…..but she is, for now, only “intrigued” with Jesus.  But I sense that He is digging deep in the soil of her heart…..I pray so!!  🙂  

    1. Wow!  This is so good, Jackie.  Yes, I will add ‘N’ to my prayers this week.  🙂

    2. wow! Praying, Jackie!

    3. Wow! Is right!

    4. Jackie-She sees Him in you..His fragrance in you. :)))

    5. Praying for N Jackie. Your above post was a reflection that could have come from the celebration of life my dear friend who lost her battle to Cancer last week. Our loss but her gain and she knew it.  The service and what she lived and died was a testimony to what you shared.

  25. This is a longer post but I hope you will tolerate my musings.  I have done a bit of thinking and research, and hope my perspective helps some.
     
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.
     
    Job ponders that perhaps a time will come, after God’s wrath is past, that God will remember him, that man will live again, and that he will be renewed, in some way similar to the tree. “Renewal” (vs. 14) and “sprout again” (vs. 7 in reference to the tree) are related words in the Hebrew.
     
    6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — Find it in Job 14:15-17.
     
    “You would call”, “you would long for the works of your hand” … “you would cover over my iniquity”. 
     
    Knowing that Job is quite possibly the earliest written book in the Bible, and is like poetry and therefore hard to interpret, and that most likely Job did not have a fully developed view of death and resurrection that comes later in the Bible, I felt I should look at the passage carefully to see what was being said in this passage. 
     
    In Job 14:15-17, Job does seem to suggest a later resurrection and renewal. Yet just a few verses later, Job says that “you destroy the hope of man. You prevail forever against him, and he passes;” (Job 14:19-20). So how do we understand Job? It seems obvious that Job was not sure. God’s reasoning was a mystery to him; yet he had some hope. 
     
    In The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Elmer B. Smick says, “Job suggested that God could provide a remedy by simply taking his life till his [God’s anger] was over and then, by resurrection, call him back from Sheol. …  While it may be true that a fully developed doctrine of resurrection and afterlife comes into Hebrew literature in Hellenistic times [the time between the OT and NT] … Dahood has correctly shown that these concepts were not foreign to preexilic Israel. This chapter proves that Job believed in the possibility of resurrection.”
     
    My Interpretation:
     
    God calls us. Job longs for God to call his name, just as the lover in Song of Songs longs for the beloved to call “Arise, my love, my beautiful one and come away.” (Song of Songs 2:10). This morning it struck me these passages are related to Jesus speaking Mary’s name as she grieves in confusion at the empty tomb. 
     
    John 20:11-16
    “But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb, and as she wept she stooped to look into the tomb. … She turned around and saw Jesus standing, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.”16 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned and said to him in Aramaic,“Rabboni!” (which means Teacher).”
     
    How would I react if Jesus called my name, as he did Mary’s? I imagine I would fall on my face in worship and weeping. Yet, in fact, Jesus does call my name; as he called Job’s, as he called Mary’s. I am sometimes the weeper as is Mary in that passage. I believe and follow, yet life is “full of trouble” like Job. My only hope is the resurrection – the resurrection of Jesus who has “covered my iniquities” (Job 14: 17) and the hope of my resurrection when all the troubles of this world will be made right. Yet, even now in the “not yet” of this life, I can know that Jesus calls me and “longs” for me (Job 14:15). What a glorious thought.
     

    1. Diane!  Your musings look so good!  I’m trying not to read them yet, because I want to do some thinking on my own first, but I may not be able to wait.       🙂

      1. DIANE!    I have read and thought through the passage now, and came back to your musings here.  SO excellent.   Like others, I am stirred by the connection to Mary hearing Jesus call her name.  What a remarkable EASTER message this is!  Thank you for sharing this with us.  Also, recognizing the antiquity of the book and Job’s lack of understanding, yet his HOPE is so well said. 

      2. Wanda-I have that same problem!

    2. Diane – your interpretation is truly beautiful and much appreciated!!!  I struggled and floundered with question #6, but I love how you were able to develop it through bringing in Mary’s encounter with Jesus after the resurrection.  And your application of the “not yet” of your own life (“full of trouble” – amen to that sister!!  🙂  ) brings it home well.  Well done.  Thank you.  

    3. Diane, so good how you related this to Mary, how Jesus called her.  Love you last paragraph and how your explanation led up to it.

  26. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.     I’m still processing how all of the pieces fit, but this year, I have been so taken with the everlasting love of God.  First, from Hamilton’s sermon a couple weeks ago, when he talked about the debate between Arius and Athanasius to define the nature of God. I looked up and spent a little time reading the Athanasian Creed.  God is eternal.  Jesus is eternal.  And it is critical to know this, because without an eternal son, God could not have demonstrated His eternal love for Him. Or for us.  It soothes me to know that there has never been a time without God’s eternal love.  Along with His deity and eternal nature, I was also struck this year, by his sheer humanity.  I mentioned last week, that on Maundy Thursday, I experienced walking through the Stations of the Cross and it was powerful.  As my pastor commented, ‘real preparation for Easter’.  Many things stood out, but one was to reflect on the real live relationships Jesus had with those in his family and fellowship:  his disciples, the women who followed him, his family and especially, his mother.  On Friday night, we went to a nearby church to attend their reflective, somber Good Friday service with songs and meditations on the seven last words of Jesus on the cross.  The meditation on Mary and John; and Jesus’ love for them gripped my heart in a new way.  Really…..a palpable heart sinking when I thought about Mary watching her son die this horrific death.  I realized that my oldest child will be 33 this year and for the first time, in some strange way,  I felt like I could have been a ‘peer’ to Mary…only in the realization of having a child the age of hers.  (not a peer in other ways)  How could she bear the indescribable horror and pain to watch his suffering?  His loving words when he placed John and Mary in a mother/son relationship; what everlasting love.  What humanity to care deeply for the mother who would be without him.    What deity to give her his unfailing love through the presence of another.    I have never felt this in quite the same way before.  

  27. 1.What stands out to you from the above and why.  1) Love the song.   and ***2) Oh my — the connection of the resurrection with Song of Solomon 2:11.  It “clicked” when I read the verse on the photo and triggered the emotion I’ve experienced when reading the end of Lewis’ The Last Battle

    And as He spoke, He no longer looked to them like a lion; but the things that began to happen after that were so great and beautiful that I cannot write them. And for us this the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on for ever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.

    1. Renee – my life group at church studied Randy Alcorn’s book Heaven this year….and while there was MUCH lively eye rolling at some of the book’s content( a fair share of it was mine!!!) ….still in all….it really served as a catalyst to bubbling up true anticipations and emotions that fit seamlessly into this phenomenal ending to the Last Battle!  I have some all time favorite beginnings to books…..Moby Dick, The Land Remembers…..and I also have some all time favorite endings – of which your quote here is one!!!!  Oh, yes, yes, yes……come quickly Lord Jesus!!!!  

      1. Jackie:   I JUST gave all four of my ‘kids’ Randy Alcorns’  booklet on HEAVEN, this Easter weekend~     The reason being, that I know when I was young, I only heard talk about a nebulous, ‘spiritual’ place that somehow was perfect, but sounded very unappealing.  On faith, I believed that it had to be good, because God made it for us and He loves us so much.  But, none of it seemed ‘real’ to me.  I could only take it on faith, because my trust was in Him completely.   Then, when my friend, Steve, was dying, I had to know more.  And by this time, I’d picked up lots of ‘bits and pieces’ of a much clearer, better teaching of heaven being a restored, new earth, right here……only perfect.  And suddenly, the appeal was magnanimous!  And the pieces seemed to come together.  And I thought that my kids being earth lovers……(in every sense of that word) might really be impressed with a new and perfect earth as a backdrop. I decided I had to ‘bridge the gap’ with my loved ones who don’t take the Bible at it’s word because this needed to be clarified.  At least, they needed to know I believed differently than I had likely hinted at when they were young.    So…..I sort of awkwardly gave them a copy and told them why.  I am hoping it will cause a thirst in their souls.  And also, my reading partner and I are reading the large version HEAVEN.   We haven’t done any eye rolling yet….. I wonder.  (Except that it is extremely long and we are very slow in only getting together 2-3 times a month…..not always reading too much each time.  So it’ll be awhile.)  I just don’t ‘get’ where all of this (what seems to be very accurate) teaching was hiding all the years of my youth.  I just caught wind of it, in the past 15 years.  Our former pastor gave everyone at church,  a copy of Alcorn’s  shorter book about Eternity and I read it while my mom was in her last months.  I liked it, but the verses weren’t spelled out and I kept thinking…..’for real?’   ‘how does he know?’……But now that I’ve looked up most of the scriptures,  I think he’s mostly right.    And CS Lewis is/was one of the writers who in various books and essays seemed to ‘spell it out’ all along.  He got my attention on this subject quite awhile ago.    I would like to do a study on heaven here.  🙂   

        1. Wanda – I haven’t seen the booklet version….but I’m sure that it is good!  I need to clarify that I thought the book Heaven WAS very good!  🙂  I did not necessarily follow Mr. Alcorn down every path he took….but I DID appreciate the grounding in Scripture and the (accurate I do believe!) pictures of heaven as the earth restored and renewed…..like C.S. Lewis so masterfully has written….this teaching resonates completely with the literal ACHING at the beauty of this earth at times….and the lonely longing even in the midst of this beauty!  To a person, our life group agreed that this book was an incredible springboard to firing our imagination and anticipation for heaven.  

  28. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.  I seem to remember the most recent lessons the best — and am struck by God’s persistent love and grace despite my hard heart and thick skull. I haven’t been feeling well the last several days; plus the weather and roads were bad on Saturday and early Sunday; Friday was a work holiday.  I didn’t leave home during the weekend.  I was aware of Easter, focusing somewhat on Holy week, but also in somewhat of a daze. But later in the day yesterday, I forgot what day it was.  I was HORRIFIED last night to  realize that I had done most of my taxes late Easter Sunday afternoon.  WHO DOES THAT?  The Lord drew me right to himself; his forgiveness and grace are so sweet.  And I do believe He has a sense of humor, too.  The first verse that popped into my head was related to “giving unto Caesar…”   Easy to respond joyfully to that kind of love… to arise from my sleep, even when I am not feeling fantastic physically.

    1. “Easy to respond joyfully to that kind of love…..to arise from my sleep, even when I am not feeling fantastic physically.”  Renee…..that is golden and spurs me on today!  🙂  

    2. Renee,      I’m so bummed to read that you haven’t been feeling well.   I have been thinking of you and wondering if you were laying low.  Glad to hear about God meeting you with words that made your heart joyful though!    Praying for you to feel better and get through this ‘slump’.   

  29. 3.  Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament (compare v. 6 to the ending of Psalm 39).  
     
    I couldn’t help but think of how this lament is interwoven through all of Scripture.  Here Job is lamenting out of a place of extreme loss and pain and sorrow…..while in Ecclesiastes, for instance, Solomon strikes much of the same tone throughout – from a place of “having it all”.  “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities!  All is vanity.  What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun?  A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.”  (Ecclesiastes 1:2-4).  Even James (in James 4:14) speaks plainly to this as he says “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring.  What is your life?  For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”  So this idea of the brevity of our lives, our sojourns here on earth is consistent throughout Scripture………
     
    In comparing the ending of Psalm 39 with Job 14:6, I do see the idea of the all seeing eye of God bringing pain  and even a sense of futility and hopelessness.  Judgement seems certain and how can one escape?  Even when we know we are God’s children and are walking with Him….we need encouragement in our weariness at times.  God’s hand of discipline is real and certain if we are His children!  (Hebrews 12 speaks a lot to this!).  Discipline is painful and calls for patient endurance…..and for a whole lot of lifting of our drooping hands and strengthening of our weary knees (again, Hebrews 12)…..and preaching the truth to ourselves day by day.  🙂  But in Christ we have the joyful certainty of “the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”.  Amen!  

  30. 4.  How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12?
     
    He is basing his ideas on what he has observed.  Both the tree and man are laid low, cut down.  The tree?  Out of what looks dead come buds, sprouts, branches, LIFE.  The man?  “Rises not again”.  Nothing VISIBLE is happening!  But I can almost see the wheels turning in Job’s mind and soul…..how can this be??  I’m thinking that Job may already be wondering if there is more happening to the man than he can see!!  

    1. Jackie, your words here churned my mind gears hard… “Both the man and the tree are laid low, cut down…” It seems obvious now! The tree, while cut off, ‘dead,’ isn’t! It is still attached to its source of life. It can go nowhere because it roots are attached to its life source. What life source does man have to stay connected to when cut down?! If not attached to our life source spiritually when we are cut down we will have no hope! But if we are connected to HIM, He is life and we WILL sprout again…..

      1. LOVE where your mind gears took this Jill!!  You went straight to our union with Christ!!  Amen.  

  31. 5.  The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14:13&14.  Describe it.  
     
    Last week we spoke of the LIVING GOD….here I see Job’s HOPE in the Living God.  He speaks words of longing to the God who he believes can hide him, conceal him, remember him and renew him…….First there is the sense of being tucked away from the troubles and griefs…..and then he longs for God to remember him – very personally, to remember HIM.  Not just mankind, but Job…..hidden away, concealed.  And this burgeoning  faith….that RENEWAL- new life, resurrection –  could come!!  Like Wanda’s earlier comments on Job – it is simply STAGGERING to think that Job could continue to cling to God.  There’s no question that Job’s faith and hope seems to ebb and flow throughout the book of Job…..but what is simply miraculous and surely Spirit given is that Job continues to circle around to HOPE in a God of Redemption!!  Job has staked his absolutely incredible claim in Job 13:15 just prior to the passage we are looking at…..”Though he slay me, I will hope in him;….”  .  That hope I believe is REAL and SPIRIT GRACED….and yet much refining is yet to be done….before Job will come undone and say….”I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” (42:5&6)……..oh, but Job is on the gospel road, he is on the narrow way that leads to LIFE!!!  

  32. 6.  Now the Spirit of the living God speaks.  Find it in Job 14:15-17.
     
    Well, I spent 20 minutes checking cross references and hoping for a light bulb moment – but no, nothing.  I’m coming up empty on this one…..though the cross reference rabbit trails were interesting!  😉  I can see that the wrath of God referenced in v. 13 will be satisfied and Job’s transgressions and sins covered (v. 17) through the death of Christ on the cross…..but I am just not seeing precisely what you are asking for here Dee!   Looking forward to to seeing someone else hit the target here!  🙂
     
     

  33. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.
    During one of our Easter devotions, my youngest (9) asked what happened to the Trinity when Jesus was forsaken by God—“did it break?” While I “knew” the right words, it led me to search out this mystery deeper. Jesus, not half-man, half-God, but fully man, fully God. His humanity experienced death, in it’s completeness. But His deity, never died, for God cannot die. He had to be fully man, in order that He could fully die for us—and yet, He had to be fully God in order that He could conquer death for us. The death of death, through Christ. We must sit with the fullness of His humanity so we are not tempted to say while looking at the pain that ‘oh, but He was God’—yes, and He gave up all of His protection from pain in order to experience to the place of being forsaken—a place we will never have to go. Then my older child, who struggles,  asked ‘if God is so loving, why would He do that to Jesus?’But oh, Jesus does not want or need our pity. Christ went to the Cross not as a puppet, but willingly. And not only did Christ suffer, but it grieved God the Father to be separated from His Beloved. The dance of the Trinity will always be a mystery to me, but I am amazed at how I never tire of the truths of Easter, they only hit me deeper each year. For God so loved us. 
     

    1. Wow, Lizzy… WHAT A QUESTION from your child!   And oh, how God the Father’s heart must have broken to see His Son suffer and die.  He loved us through his pain.

    2. This post is amazing, Lizzy.  You had such a grand discussion with your kids.  Just. so. good.  

    3. Ah Lizzy – the gift of children’s questions!  They truly do remind us of what we have begun to take for granted…..and I love that you leaped at the opportunity to “search out this mystery deeper.”  And to do so in the company of your children….priceless!  Priceless for ALL of you.  😉  Your children ARE going to remember your joy, your delight in your God….Father, Son and Holy Spirit….and in His Word.  So grateful that you shared this with us.  

    4. Lizzy, I love both of those honest questions from your kids!  And I love your answer, and as for your older one’s question… well, because He loved us so much that He had to do the one and only thing that could be done to connect us with Him for eternity!!!! (offer a perfect sacrifice) And Jesus understood that love, because He also (being God) loved us that much and willingly gave all for us!  

      1. I love seeing your face here this morning, Mary!  Happy Easter!  I think of you often.  <3    (I’m so sorry it’s been so long since I connected with you)  

      2. I love seeing your face here this morning, Mary!  Happy Easter!  I think of you often.  <3    (I’m so sorry it’s been so long since I connected with you)  

        1. Thanks Wanda.  I’ve been laying low lately…and really doubling down with trying to fight cancer naturally (juicing, exercise, etc…)  We’ll see what happens!

  34. 3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)
    Job has a sense of hopelessness and despair; yet he acknowledges that his days are determined by God.  It sounds as if he is telling God to look the other way so that he can enjoy some of his pointless life.Hmmm… at the end of Ps 39, the psalmist first asks God to hear his prayer, then tells him to look away.   I wonder if the request that God look away is related to awareness of and shame related to his own sin together with awareness of God’s holiness (both for Job and the Psalmist)  ?????
     
    4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12? Beasts and birds and bushes and fish all know that life and breath are from God.  (oops! I was reading chapter 12.  A tree might have hope because of it’s dependence on God!)Ch 14:  Dead-looking stumps can be revived with water.  New shoots come from the roots.
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.  Job took the comparison with the hidden life in tree roots further: “that you would conceal me until your wrath be past, that you would appoint me a set time, and remember me!”   And then he finds hope in asking if man would live again:  “All the days of my service I would wait, till my renewal should come.” That is, it’s not so bad to wait through ongoing drudgery and painful service when we have the promise of renewal, resurrection. (VERY MOTIVATING reminder)
     

  35. 6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — find it in Job 14:15-17.  

    You would call, and I would answer you;
    you would long for the work of your hands.
    For then you would number my steps;
    you would not keep watch over my sin;
    my transgression would be sealed up in a bag,
    and you would cover over my iniquity.

    This strikes me as so different from the way Job was speaking to himself at the beginning of the  chapter.  The Spirit speaks through calling him, longing for him = wooing him AND through action: numbering his steps, NOT looking at his sin, covering his iniquity.

    This section does make me think that asking God to look away (v. 6) is related to awareness of sin and shame.  When he was focused on himself, his own sin, he didn’t want God to look at him.  Job turns from focus on himself to responding to God’s call, then “coming full circle” to see that God doesn’t keep track of his sin, instead that he covers his sin.  Even WAY BACK then, the Spirit of God made his people aware of His call and His covering of sin.  So hope in the resurrection and covering of sin always have been related.

    1. Renee–I LOVE this last paragraph, and oh I need to remember this daily–“When he was focused on himself, his own sin, he didn’t want God to look at him.  Job turns from focus on himself to responding to God’s call, then “coming full circle” to see that God doesn’t keep track of his sin, instead that he covers his sin.”

    2. Renee, I agree with Lizzy. This is very good and I think you’ve hit it… It also shines a bit of light in ‘the turn’ in the lament -Him calling to us with truth will lead us to come full circle. Also love your thought – “hope in the resurrection and covering of sin always have been related.”

    3. Renee – that’s an astonishing connection between “hope in the resurrection and covering of sin”!  Crucial to this connection would seem to be REPENTANCE…..as in Job 42;5&6.  And I’m learning (from Rosaria Butterfield’s writing especially! ) that there is NO SHAME IN REPENTANCE!!!  Job’s repentance SO reminds me of Isaiah’s response in Isaiah 6:5……and it is AT THAT POINT that Job’s friends are rebuked by the Lord, Job prays for them and Job’s fortunes are restored.  Truly amazing.  My understanding is that in this case the root word for “repent” also conveys a sense of COMFORT…..as in “am comforted in dust and ashes”.  I do see that in repentance there surely is the comfort of seeing that God is God…..and I am not.  True relationship can flourish when I see Him as He is.  I can be still and know that He is God.  Peace.  Rest.  Security.  

  36. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.
    When I was in my teens I learned a song : “God said it and I believe it and that settles it for me.” I often thought that my faith was so simplistic and wondered if I was just being polly-annish. Psalms 13:1-2 My heart is not proud, my eyes not haughty-I do not concern myself with matters too difficult for me…Like a weaned child with its mother is my soul within me. It is one thing to memorize and know this verse; it is another to experience the soul peace that only God can give during times when life throws you a curve ball and there are no answers; only some confusion. Did we hear you right, Lord?
     
    My husband and I have been excited about a dream (Plan A) that we felt was God-given. We would talk about it regularly and have in fact shared it with a few close friends. Last week, something happened that got us surprised and suddenly scrambling and asking , any plan B-Z? Yet as I looked back to the last 2 weeks, bits and pieces are coming together. It is as if God is saying to us, “Not yet, Richard and Bing”. I was so bent on that dream that I was deeply disappointed. This holy week God met me in my disappointment. He impressed in my heart that all is well and that He makes everything beautiful in His time. Just as He sent His Son at the proper time so would my dream come to fruition according to His will and timing. Romans 8:32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?

    1. There’s so much truth in your post, Bing!     First, in regard to the song you mentioned.  I too remember this and seeing this phrase on bumper stickers etc.  For me, I could quite often relate, back when I was young.  Things were pretty black and white for awhile.  And I never wrestled too much.  But oh……how being a parent changed a lot of that.   And life changes.  And we draw close to people who wrestle SO hard and SO long.  And no longer does everything seem so black and white.  I feel the most wrestling in my own heart, as I’ve seen churches change; taking far too legalistic stands and far too open minded/no rules stands.  How I love a balance of truth and mercy!    Then, your disappointment over Plan A not happening.  I’m so sorry, Bing.  There must have been some very  hard days of processing.  But the hope you relay.   God’s timing.  His making everything beautiful in His time.  I will pray today,  that you keep seeing that as He leads you into an even better Plan B-Z.   

    2. Bing:    This may be a duplicate comment, but in case the one I asked to be removed (since it had my full name) is gone…..I am posting it again.  🙂
      There’s so much truth in your post, Bing!     First, in regard to the song you mentioned.  I too remember this and seeing this phrase on bumper stickers etc.  For me, I could quite often relate, back when I was young.  Things were pretty black and white for awhile.  And I never wrestled too much.  But oh……how being a parent changed a lot of that.   And life changes.  And we draw close to people who wrestle SO hard and SO long.  And no longer does everything seem so black and white.  I feel the most wrestling in my own heart, as I’ve seen churches change; taking far too legalistic stands and far too open minded/no rules stands.  How I love a balance of truth and mercy!    Then, your disappointment over Plan A not happening.  I’m so sorry, Bing.  There must have been some very  hard days of processing.  But the hope you relay.   God’s timing.  His making everything beautiful in His time.  I will pray today,  that you keep seeing that as He leads you into an even better Plan B-Z.   

      1. Thank you, Wanda! I am learning from Job’s example. I know that my Redeemer lives…I myself will see him with my own eyes amidst my circumstances and the seeming unfulfilled dream. He is good.

  37. 9. Read 1 Corinthians 15:12-26 and explain why it is vital to our faith that Christ arose.
    Such an important question! I’m going to keep pondering because there is so much–but will not be able to post the rest of the week, so here’s some first thoughts…I’m pulling from a few other places as well, but Paul tells them first in the beginning of this chapter, to remember the Gospel he preached to them, of Christ risen from the dead. Acts 2:36 “Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” The resurrection proves that Christ is the Messiah. 
     
    The resurrection promises that we will be raised into eternal life! “And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.  Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.” 1 Corinthians 15:16-19
     
    The resurrection provides our justification. Romans 4:24-25 “It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.” Also Acts 5:31 “God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.” 
     

  38. 4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12?  
     
    If a tree is cut it may still sprout again. With water it may bud and grow.
     
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.
     
    Job asks God if He can have a life after death.
     
     
     

  39. 15 
    6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — find it in Job 14:15-17.
     
    You would call, and I would answer you;    you would long for the work of your hands.16 For then you would number my steps;    you would not keep watch over my sin;17 my transgression would be sealed up in a bag,    and you would cover over my iniquity.
     
     
    Heart melting-THE GOSPEL HERE! He who knew no sin became sin for us so that He could seal up our transgressions in a bag, take on our condemnation so we wouldn’t be condemned wrapping us in His righteousness. Why? Because He loves and longs for us-the work of His hands. So He can have us now and oh in the future when we are face to face fully transformed. 
     
    7. The next time the Spirit of the living God breaks into Job’s lament is in 19:25-27. Find and describe it.
     
    For I know that my Redeemer lives,    and at the last he will stand upon the earth.26 And after my skin has been thus destroyed,    yet in my flesh I shall see God,27 whom I shall see for myself,    and my eyes shall behold, and not another.    My heart faints within me!
     
    I love how Job is lamenting..and the Spirit abruptly intervenes overwhelming him..love love love how He moves in our lament this way too! He takes Job’s lament and turns it to Him-HE LIVES and because He lives Job will live..God turns his lament to the wonder and climax of being face to face with Him..He shall behold God face to face AND NOT ANOTHER…nothing will vie for his affections-desiring relief from suffering, loss of family, friends…no comfort on this Earth can outweigh being face to face with God ..his heart faints within him!!
     

  40. After answering 6 & 7 I can answer #2 now 🙂 for God did come to me in a similar way although my suffering has been a molecule of Jobs-if even that!! BUT He came over and over with the same encouragement..When the worry of my two oldest boys hit me threatening to take me into deep waters, and when I was tempted to control it, when the evil one condemned me of all my failings as a parent…how I failed God and when God sees you face to face he is going to condemn you for your parenting mistakes..His spirit has been intervening beating satan down and my heart is fainting. For my redeemer lives and I shall behold Him face to face AND NOT ANOTHER! He took on my condemnation, has my transgressions sealed in a bag and He covers my iniquity..He will remove Baal from my lips! Nothing here on Earth compares..nothing-I mean NOTHING, and so this Holy week He turned my affections from desiring to see my son turn to him, our situation change here so my husband can have better fellowship, etc..none of those things, as important as they are, are more important than the reality that He took on my condemnation so that I will be raised with Him and behold I can experience Him now-and I love His kisses when the spirit intervenes like this-and oh in the future to behold Him with my eyes-face to face-baal free.  

    1. Rebecca – “Nothing here on earth compares…nothing – I mean NOTHING,…..”from those words of yours through the rest of your post – I am with you all the way!!!!  This is where my heart beats, where He has been taking me…..”Arise, my love, my beautiful one , and come away…” yes, Lord. 

      1. Jackie-yes! Isn’t where He is taking us here fill us with Joy-EVEN in the middle of suffering He is our Joy for now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face!

  41.  6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks      My heart stirred to read vs.  15-17 together.     Vs. 15 had already gripped me in Dee’s introduction.  To think of Job knowing that 1)  God had created him  and 2) God called his name.  As Diane pointed out, with the antiquity of this book, it is stunning to see how God had placed this in his heart.     “He has set eternity in the hearts of men, yet they cannot fathom what he has done from the beginning to the end.’  Ecc. 3:11  WOW!  That’s quite a commentary on Job’s responses here.   Job had that ‘God shaped vacuum’ in his heart as Augustine spoke of.  These thoughts also square with C.S. Lewis’ famous words:  

    If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.
     

    The other passage that comes to mind is the many references to God calling our name in Isaiah.  In 43: 1,2  But this is what the Lord says….he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel:  ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.’      Job didn’t have this passage, but we do!  And this; the theme of The Song:   “I am my Beloved’s and He is mine”     What a tapestry of interwoven truth in these amazing passages.        
     
    I was also moved by this:  After that wonderful declaration in verse 15….that God who created him, calls him back to Himself……Job says that surely then, God will count his steps but not keep track of his sin.  His offenses will be sealed in a bag; his sin covered.     What a picture of REDEMPTION!  God created him.  God bought him back.   And the price that was paid covered all of his sin.   Sins sealed up in a bag and thrown in the bottom of the sea.   (trying to remember the lyrics of an Audio Adrenaline song here,……I’ll have to look it up!)

  42. Testing:    My last two posts that I posted this morning,  didn’t show up.    I suppose they needed approval, and will arrive later.  I wonder if I typed my name wrong?  But I noticed when I made this post, that the default name on the drop down is my full name; first and last.  Which I don’t want on the blog.  This is a change.   The default used to be only my first name.  Any thoughts????    Can that be switched back???

      1. Thank you, Dee. I will email David. I was very confused too. I discovered that my full name appears when I start typing my name in on the ‘name’ space. That’s how it started I think. I grabbed the default without seeing it was my whole name. But I don’t think that was an option before. I think it used to come up with only my first name. Over a period of 4-5 hours yesterday, my ‘disappearing posts’ came and went many times. Now you see them….now you don’t! It’s just imperative to me that I don’t have my full name visible. I will ask David.

  43. OH…..now I see that my full name DOES appear on those two posts above.   CAN THIS BE REMOVED???     I know that if one’s full name is here, any google search of a name will bring this page up.    I really don’t want that accessibility.   HELP!!??   

    1. Wanda – I am not seeing your full name on any of your posts….or did it get fixed promptly???  At any rate…..your full name does NOT appear to me on any posts!  Phew!  🙂  

      1. Well, it was there and maybe the whole post was removed.  I should have copied it before I posted so I could post again.  At least it’s no longer here.  :-/     And the drop down default is fixed as well.  That’s good!  That must be why my whole name appeared.  I know I didn’t type it all out.  

        1. OKAY!!!!  NOW IT”S BACK!    One can think they are going over the edge here when this happens…….  haha!  It keeps one in suspense!  Does anyone else see it?  

        2. Not seeing your last name (but I already know it and know where/how to find you!!)

  44. 2. Share a new insight or a way God met you this holy week.
     
    You may recall that the church to which I belong is now sharing facilities with another congregation.    Their congregation was used to having a potluck dinner just before the Maundy Thursday service.   This is something our church had never done.   Since their congregation was without a permanent pastor for a few months, the plan was made that the two congregations would share in their potluck, and then they would attend our Maundy Thursday service with us.  At first I couldn’t understand how the other congregation ever came to the plan to have a potluck at that time – wasn’t that like having a joyful celebration before the appropriately somber worship service?   I was having a hard time with it.   Then when Maundy Thursday turned out to be a seriously rainy day, and I had to struggle my heavy crockpot full of sweet-and-sour meatballs down the long hallway to the church kitchen, I was getting just a bit bent out of shape!    I was thinking “Why are we doing this?”     Then out of the blue it came to me – Jesus had a meal with his disciples just ahead of the Garden of Gethsemane, his arrest, and his trial!!   What a different perspective!    We would be a “group of disciples” eating together – not some revelers having an  out-of-place celebration.   How could I have missed that in the first place?!!   
     
    On Good Friday, our college-age S.A.L.T.  (Serving and living Together) group prepared the seven stations of the cross in the sanctuary, and we signed up for half-hour to hour periods when we would have our personal time interacting with these seven stations.    They had planned so well, and the experience was powerful.   Two stations I recall most vividly were “My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me?” and “I thirst.”     For the first one we were asked to write on a small slip of paper a time when we had felt forsaken by God, then to fold that paper, and using hammer and nails provided to nail it to a piece of wood.   The second one encouraged us to soak a sponge in a bucket of water and then use it to water a potted plant.  We were led to think about how we might help to provide clean water for God’s children in the world who do not have it.  Christ is still thirsting!  
     
    3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)  
     
    Job has looked at life and decided that it is too brief and too full of pain and trouble. It is as if God has set man up for a hopelessly unfair situation.  Both verse 6 and the ending of Psalm 39 are asking God to “look away.”  I take this to mean that David and Job each were asking God to leave him alone and not bother him until the designated time for his death. 
     
    4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12? 
     
    We don’t find much mention of the resurrection of the dead in the Old Testament.  That really isn’t surprising since Jesus was not yet crucified and raised by God from the dead.    But Job’s hopelessness  sees more hope for a tree, which will sprout again, if it is cut down.  
     
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.
     
    Job says, “If only you would hide me in the grave and conceal me till your anger has passed! If only you would set a time and then remember me!”     If only God would hide him with the dead and then bring him out again!     We are more blessed than Job, as Job had to ask the question, “If someone dies, will they live again?”   We know that we will arise again!  We look forward to our Beloved saying “Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come away.”    Job says in verse 14, “All the days of my hard service I will wait for my renewal to come.”    So it sounds that Job has hope of an afterlife.  

    1. Deanna:   I LOVE your Holy Week experiences and just have to comment.  Our church had a Maundy Thursday and not a Good Friday service.  (it used to be so common that communities did a community service that having just Thursday wasn’t unusual to me….and we went to a different church on G.F.)  but I totally had the same thought as you did when I first read your post….about the meal.  I would have been right there with you….bothered by the thought of a potluck.  But, here’s how it came to me.  (kind of the same conclusion).  Since we just had Thursday, it was, in a sense a combination of the two themes.  After we sang a couple somber songs…..we gathered around small tables in the narthex and broke bread/drank juice with the smaller groups that gathered there and shared that as a ‘meal’.  It was sorta like communion…..but more like how Jesus shared with his disciples that day. ‘Communion’ as a liturgical practice, followed later as a remembrance of that day.  I thought, at first….is this right?  Not to have a somber ‘communion’ while still using the bread and grape juice?  We ate…..and also had conversation around the meaning of the night and how must the disciples have felt etc.  But then it also hit me……this is more like the actual ‘last supper’.  And after that, each group was dismissed and we went through the Stations of the Cross.  (a first for me and it was wonderful).    I’m so glad you shared.  It helped affirm my thoughts about the ‘meal part’ …..  

    2. DEANNA:   I already commented, but reading again… this is really hitting home right now:  
       

       The second one encouraged us to soak a sponge in a bucket of water and then use it to water a potted plant.  We were led to think about how we might help to provide clean water for God’s children in the world who do not have it.  Christ is still thirsting!  

      we used the sponge/water with a different application at our station…..but I am just taken with your application here.  Christ is still thirsting.  Whenever we give a cup of cold water in His name……we give it to Him.  At our kids church group last night, we did an exercise teaching the kids about the inequities of safe water in our world and are collecting offering money for clean well water projects.  I just have never seen this parallel.  Christ is still thirsting.  What a visual aid this is.  

       

  45.  Well, I had some disappearing posts today….so this may or may not be visible above also.  I asked that my full name be removed, as it mysteriously appeared with a couple posts.  I was glad my name was gone, and just when I was bemoaning that I hadn’t copied my post so I could re-post it, it mysteriously appeared long enough to copy!  So here it is again.  Or not!  🙂   
     
    6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks      My heart stirred to read vs.  15-17 together.     Vs. 15 had already gripped me in Dee’s introduction.  To think of Job knowing that 1)  God had created him  and 2) God called his name.  As Diane pointed out, with the antiquity of this book, it is stunning to see how God had placed this in his heart.     “He has set eternity in the hearts of men, yet they cannot fathom what he has done from the beginning to the end.’ Ecc. 3:11  WOW!  That’s quite a commentary on Job’s responses here.   Job had that ‘God shaped vacuum’ in his heart as Augustine spoke of.  These thoughts also square with C.S. Lewis’ famous words:  

    If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. 

    The other passage that comes to mind is the many references to God calling our name in Isaiah.  In 43: 1,2  But this is what the Lord says….he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel:  ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.’      Job didn’t have this passage, but we do!  And this; the theme of The Song:   “I am my Beloved’s and He is mine”     What a tapestry of interwoven truth in these amazing passages.         I was also moved by this:  After that wonderful declaration in verse 15….that God who created him, calls him back to Himself……Job says that surely then, God will count his steps but not keep track of his sin.  His offenses will be sealed in a bag; his sin covered.     What a picture of REDEMPTION!  God created him.  God bought him back.   And the price that was paid covered all of his sin.   Sins sealed up in a bag and thrown in the bottom of the sea.   (trying to remember the lyrics of an Audio Adrenaline song here,……I’ll have to look it up!)

  46. Dee, I know I posted a couple of times this morning and my posts are not showing. Anything going on?

    1. Yes, Laura……mine were doing the same.  Off again.  On again.  🙂  But, I also had just noted (here) that my full name appeared as it had shown up in the drop down default.  (it’s always been just my first name before…so that was a mystery.)  Anyway….mine came and went.  Right now, only the posts without my full name are showing.  Hope yours come back too!  

  47. 3. Read Job 14:1-6 and describe his honest lament. (Compare verse 6 to the ending of Psalm 39.)
     
    Job compared himself to a flower that withers and as a fleeting shadow that does not endure. He came across as resigned to his “fate” and that he is only existing and not really living. Going a downward spiral to depression and a feeling of worthlessness. Job felt so ugly and rotten and unworthy that he did not want God to even look at him.
    Derek Kidner writes: “The very presence of such prayers in Scripture is a witness to His understanding. He knows how men speak when they are desperate.”
    When I was going through this reading, I realized that the book of Job is 42 chapters long! Indeed what Kidner say here is insightful about our God being an understanding God. We can go on and on about our lament and He would never get tired of inclining his ears to us.
     
    4. How does Job see more hope for a tree in Job 14:7-12? 
    A tree can be cut down but since the root is still intact all it needed is water to see growth again whereas when a man is “cut down” or dies, he is no more.
    5. The turn in Job’s lament comes in Job 14: 13-14. Describe it.
    Job turns to God and states that God can hide him in the grave but can raise him back to life when God’s anger is past.
    6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — find it in Job 14:15-15-17.
     
    Oh, wow! Tears. It is as if Job was reminded of who God is and that He is a forgiving God and will redeem Job in due time.

  48. 6. Now the Spirit of the living God speaks — find it in Job 14:15-15-17.
     
    The Spirit of the living God speaks to us, not in audible words, but in a dramatic change of our thoughts, through feelings, and sometimes tears.   So even though we don’t see the Scripture saying that God spoke the words in first person to Job, Job is touched by the Spirit to have a new thought.   This enables Job to say, “You will call and I will answer you…you will count my steps but not keep track of my sin.”   
     
    7. The next time the Spirit of the living God breaks into Job’s lament is in 19:25-27. Find and describe it.
     
    Job felt that God had brought all the disasters upon him, but faced with death and decay, Job is still expecting to be with his “redeemer.”   He says “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.   And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God.”