A More Christlike Job (the book) – Part 2 – The Moral Sense of Job – Brad Jersak

Please review Part 1 (The Literal Sense of Job) and stay tuned for Part 3 (The Gospel Sense of Job)

Moral Sense (not moralistic)

For Christians, the Moral Sense of the book relates to 2 Timothy 3:16, which says, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” In other words, the Poetry of Job is more than just a morality play that reinforces the Law, especially if we reduce the heart of the Law to prohibitions and punishments (which is to misread it badly).

Instead, the moral sense looks to Job for inspiration in the life of daily discipleship. How might this book direct us (personally and corporately) on our journey of transformation toward a more Christlike life? How does it fashion the image of Christ in us?

Briefly, this is where Old Testament books can also serve as cautionary tales. That is, many Old Testament stories are examples of what NOT to do (just as Paul describes in 1 Corinthians 10:1-10). For example, back in the day, I decided to stop reading the speeches of Job’s foolish friends because I figured they were useless. God had dismissed them as folly, so why shouldn’t I? But then, over a decade later, I re-read what they were saying. To my dismay, some of their answers sounded perfectly reasonable to me… and indeed, I heard their platitudes coming out of my own mouth! By reading their speeches carefully, those silly characters were actually showing me how to avoid their error and become more Christlike, empathetic, and compassionate.

Further, the character of Job himself can shape our moral character if we follow him from self-justification to humility and on into intercession for our accusers. You know,… like Jesus did on the Cross and Stephen when he was being stoned to death. Job forges a difficult path, but to follow his transformation through to the end is to anticipate Jesus’ call to “take up your cross and follow me” by praying for and blessing even those who point the accusing finger.

Please review Part 1 (The Literal Sense of Job) and stay tuned for Part 3 (The Gospel Sense of Job)


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