But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food. (Job 23:10-12)
The Magi decided in a far-away land that they would follow after God. That basic decision determined everything that followed in their lives. They would never be the same again because of the decision they made. I’m asking you to decide to follow Jesus this year. The Christmas season is a time when we sort of disjoint ourselves from routine and pursuit. It’s a good time to pause and take stock of what we would like to do this coming year.
Let’s follow the Wise Men, the Magi who sought God by laying aside other things and followed the star God showed them. We don’t have to ride a camel to a far-away place to follow God. Follow Him right where you are. He’s there and He will direct your steps if you want to be directed.
They followed the star when no one else saw it or showed the slightest interest in their silly ‘ole star. They pursued God’s plan, alone. And, they did not pursue the star empty-handed. They expected to find a God-King and went prepared to give Him appropriate gifts.
They were not the first people to follow God with little knowledge to go on. Job was like that, who afterward wrote a book in our Bible that bears his name. Job is the oldest book in the Bible, older than the writings of Moses which include Genesis and the story of creation.
Job was not before creation, but his writings are supposedly older than the writings of Moses who wrote about creation. That bit of information brings us immediately to the question of just what did Job have in hand from God? Job refers to his way and the commandment of his lips.
Job testified that he was aware of God’s knowledge of him and his manner of living. He had so little in the way of formal knowledge. There was no Old Testament to study. No Hebrew or Greek to pore over by candle light. No library or collection of books; no newspapers; no seminary or Bible college that he could refer to. But without any of those things Job had some things from God that he knew he was accountable for.
My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept…neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips. His steps, His way, His lips, His mouth.
We have heard and read a lot of things against Job’s self-righteousness as though we are free from that today since we have become so educated and refined. We know a lot more than Job knew; we smell a lot better than Job smelled. He was not known for being bathed and perfumed. One time in his lengthy book he says If I wash myself with snow water, and make my hands never so clean; (Job 9:30)
Hundreds of years later, the prophet Jeremiah challenged the people of his day: For though thou wash thee with niter, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord GOD. (Jeremiah 2:22) The writer of Proverbs mentions: Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart: …. (Proverbs 27:9)
But Job does not dwell on bathing or perfuming as we do in modern times. I think soap and perfume are wonderful things. Brother Roloff used to say: “If you’re so wonderful, how come you’ve got a bath tub in your house?” Job did not consider those things the primary focus of his life. He had been struggling hard to align himself with God’s will for his life. He had treasured the words of God’s mouth more than his necessary food.
As we pick up speed down the runway to take off into the new year of 2018 we’re going to do a lot better if we will fly by the instruments and stay on God’s flight plan. The modern “political correctness” is not from God’s lips and mouth. Staying on course within His plan for our lives is the best way to go. There is no substitute for being faithful in gathering with God’s people for encouragement and mutual comfort and for corporate hearing and discussion of the Word of God.
There is no substitute for personal daily Bible reading, prayer and family devotions in our homes. No substitute for memorizing several verses of Scripture and reviewing the verses you know. A garden will become hard and covered over with weeds if it is not plowed and cultivated. The book of Job is pretty high on the shelf, but it is good reading and I hope you will read it through this year...again. Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
DECEMBER 27, 2017 - WEDNESDAY
A.M. Zechariah 4-6 P.M. Revelation 18
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
A Good Verse to Memorize:
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Song for Today:
I Have Decided to Follow Jesus (2:39) (Gaither Group)
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