I Know that my Redeemer Lives.

Bible Reading: Job 18; 19; 20; 21 - Listen

Bildad and Zophar persistently maintain that Job is suffering because of sin in his life. Job's affliction is proof to them that he is guilty. Instead of considering Job's defense or well-being, Zophar is only concerned about his own reputation and is insulted that Job won't heed his advice. Job refutes their arguments by pointing out that righteous people often suffer and wicked people often prosper.

In his desperate time of need, Job feels abandoned by his friends and family. His family finds him loathsome and offensive (19:17). Instead of displaying loving support and offering words of encouragement, his wife says to him (in her only recorded words), "Are you still holding on to your integrity? Curse God and die" (2:9).

Worse than the rejection he feels by those he loves is the abandonment he feels from God. His cry for justice is met with God's silence. "Though I cry, 'I've been wronged!' I get no response; though I call for help, there is no justice" (19:7). His friends blame Job, and Job blames God, while it is Satan who is the real cause of his misery.

Even though he feels God has brought this disaster upon him, instead of cursing God, Job expresses his personal faith in God and his yearning to see God face to face. "I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes--I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!" (19:25-27).

When we seek to advise or comfort others, let us unselfishly display genuine interest in their pain and concern for their well-being. Let us seek to restore their spirit in meekness and avoid the all-too-common tendency to judge others in difficult circumstances as a way of bolstering our own sense of self-righteousness. Let us offer sincere compassion and support to those we love, and never abandon or avoid a friend in pain. When a spouse or friend is overcome with adversity, let us encourage them to reach up and cling to God, not to defy him with an angry fist or to run away from him in fear. When all seems lost and hopeless, let us hold on to a genuine faith that rides out the storm, and confidently proclaim, "I know that my Redeemer lives."