A Voice in the
Before the turn-of-year holidays somebody sent me an e-mail with the following communication:
Right now I forget the context of this question. It was in response to something of a VW mailing not long ago. But, independently, it and my reply provide a good spring-board to address something briefly.
Job was "perfect and upright, and fearing God, and turning away from evil." (Job1:1) He also saw to his family; if the children did any partying, he would perform the rituals of "burnt sacrifices" on their behalf, 'just in case' they had sinned. (vs5)
Transplant him into today, Job was a 'good church member'. Why... he would have been right at home in the most conservative KJV-only Independent Baptist church. He had all the "appearances" (1Ths5:22) of shunning evil. When satan appears to give account of his comings and goings before God, God challenges satan, (plays 'devil's advocate' with him) Do you see Job...there is none like him in the earth... fearing God and turning away from evil?" He's a "great man of God!"
But Job was not saved.
Job was like VERY MANY people today. They go faithfully to church. They are church members. They teach Bible classes, sing in the choir, appear at every soul-winning "visitation" night. Any time the church doors are open, they're there. They don't wear cosmetics, don't drink, gamble, smoke, dance, go to movies...and they read their Bible and 'pray' every day. But they are not saved.
Job also -knew- his own righteousness. He would have argued his case like the best of the most conservative Baptists. Job rises up, "Truly, I would seek to God, and to God I would put my plea...Surely I would speak to the Almighty, and I desire to argue with God." (Job5:8,13:3)
Well...like all the self-righteous in today's churches, Job had never actually -MET- God!
Once Job and his 'comforters' are finished expending words, then it says, "And Jehovah answered Job out of the tempest and said, Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now gird up your loins like a man, for I will question you; and you teach Me." (Job38:1-3) Ok, Job, you want to argue with Me...? Let's go to it! Show me what you got!!
After God speaks awhile He asks Job, "Shall a reprover contend with the Almighty? He who reproves God, let him answer it." And Job replies, "Behold, I am vile! What shall I answer You? I will put my hand to my mouth." (40:1-4) You see, when humanity truly sees Who and What God is, "every mouth" is stopped, and all come under God's judgment. (Rom3:19) God is in Heaven; we are but dust. Let your words be few. (Eccl 5:1-2)
God speaks some more, revealing Himself to Job. And then, the truth comes out. In all his (self)-wisdom Job, "declared, but did not understand things too wonderful for me; yea, I did not know." (42:3) And Job confesses about his past up to that point, "I have heard of You by hearing of the ear..." (42:5)
In all his rituals Job had only heard -OF- God. But had never actually "met" Him, like we read of Abraham, where after God reveals Himself to him, it says, "And he believed in Jehovah. And He counted it to him for righteousness. (Gen15:6)
So, now that Job has actually met God, what is his response? Frolicking and running up to God, jumping into His 'lap' and greeting Him with, "How'ya doin' big daddy?" Not hardly!!! [Ed: please pardon this blasphemous flippant expression. But we're making a point here! This is how many people view God!]
"..but now my eye has seen You; Therefore, I despise myself, and I have repented on dust and ashes." (vs5b-6)
Boldness to "come..to the throne of grace" (Heb4:16) is not possible until we have become humble, and then received the redemptive work of our High Priest, Jesus Christ. (vs14, Jn1:12)
It is not enough to know -OF- God's Law, and -OF- the Scriptures, and -OF- Jesus' death to redeem the sinner; having a wonderful Statement of Faith. One must actually MEET GOD. When such a meeting takes place, I have yet to find any Scriptural example where the person did not shudder in awe at God's holiness, and their own 'despicableness'. When we actually meet God, we are -NOT- "worth a lot to Him". We are worthless. And a person who has been "transformed by the renewing of the mind" (Rom12:2), will not rise up in self-righteous indignation to defend "self".
Dear Reader... HAVE YOU -MET- GOD?