A Job-LIKE ENCOUNTER
“Correct your perspective on Scripture and do not allow it to displace your personal relationship with ME.”
This is another message from the Lord for His remnant. He is consistently emphasizing the necessity of experiencing Him personally, as opposed to just hearing about Him.
We have found this message throughout Scripture and came across yet another example today from Job:
5“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear; But now my eye sees You;
6Therefore I retract, And I repent in dust and ashes.”
(Job 42:5–6 NASB95)
and in the ESV:
“5I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you;
6therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”
(Job 42:5–6 ESV)
This is the difference between hearing about God, and hearing Him — having a personal encounter with Him.
At the beginning of the Job account, God held him up to Satan saying,
“Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.”
(Job 1:8 NASB95)
At this time, Job had learned about God, and he faithfully practiced the principles of right living. As he lived through trials and devastation, he came to know God personally. When he truly encountered and experienced God his spiritual eyes were opened, he beheld God, and he fell to his knees in repentance. This is what God must work in us. This is what is required of us to stand and not fall in the coming time of extreme deception and persecution.
Read carefully and understand –
“ 15and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.
16All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness;
17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”
(2 Timothy 3:15–17 NASB95)
- Scripture is valuable to teach us about God.
- Scripture is valuable to give us wisdom to turn to Christ for our salvation.
- Scripture is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness”
- Scripture does not give us saving faith.
- Scripture does not walk with us and guide us specifically step by step through each day.
- Saving faith comes from a Job-like encounter with Jesus Christ.
- Saving faith requires a Job-like response of repentance from us.
It is only through a Job-like encounter with Jesus Christ that we can, by faith, live a daily righteous life abiding in Him; equipped to stand against the Gates of Hell.
Be blessed in Jesus,
A reader raised the question that if Scripture can make –
“the man of God . . . adequate, equipped for every good work” (2Timothy 3:17 above),
doesn’t that make Scripture sufficient in itself and contradict the necessity for a Job-like encounter?
Good question, and that would be true if “good work” were God’s primary purpose for us.
When God made man in His own image, that creative work was from His own very nature of Love. He desired to have loving fellowship with mankind in His image in the Garden of Eden.
When man rebelled, God continued in His love and provided, at great cost, man’s redemption.
God’s primary plan for man is stated in both the Old and the New Testments:
“YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND; AND YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”
Scripture is a textbook, albeit a divinely authored book, but it is still a book.
Man can never encounter and come to know God personally and love Him just by reading about Him in a book. We must be confronted with our Living God, and come to know Him. And yes, He does often use the Bible to do that. But if you rely primarily on God relating to you through The Book, you have placed something between you and God, and it is idolatry.
In effect, God told Satan that Job successfully lived according to 2Timothy 3:15-17. But Job’s account tells us he did not know God in such a way as to be able to truly love and worship Him until he encountered and knew Him personally.
Colossians 2:2–4 (NIV84)
2My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments.