“I bet I’ll knock you in to next week!” This of course a highly improbable scenario short of being put in to a coma and waking up a week later, but that’s an entirely different (and quite serious) issue. No doubt, today we raise our children differently. However, hearing these words as a child I knew that this extreme threat meant that whatever it is I was suppose to be doing needed to get done. I may not be knocked into next week, but I might just be picking myself up off of the floor. I suppose “old school” discipline involved fear of all sorts of extreme improbable threats by a parent and yet by the same breath of life, also came extreme acts of love; encouragement, support and sacrifice. The language of God in Leviticus is perhaps harsh and extreme and yet it is the same God who expressed extreme love through Jesus Christ. There is a consequence when we don’t always do what we are supposed to do. How gracious is it that we serve a God whose acts of Love are far more extreme than our disobedience?
…if then their uncircumcised heart is humbled and they make amends for their iniquity, then will I remember my covenant with Jacob; …with Isaac and …with Abraham, and I will remember the land. Leviticus 26:27-42
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The word is vexation, a state of being frustrated, annoyed or worried. Job went through a period of vexation. He pleaded for understanding of his friends’ reprimand as to what he had done to render such devastation in his life. Of course we know from the scripture that Job was innocent, guilty only of serving God. I believe Job had every right to plead his case. However, fear of God (Job 28:28) does not mean that we should be afraid to question God concerning the trials and tribulations in our lives. Wisdom is it’s own teacher. There will be many times that we are frustrated, annoyed or worried about a negative situation of which we are unaware as to why we are being challenged with this experience. Let us pray that seeking God will be our first and only recourse. Of course seeking wisdom about the situation will require that we believe God is present and at work even when what we see is to the contrary and all we are able to do is praise a truly just and loving God as we wait it out. All the while we know that redemption, reconciliation and healing is God’s blessed assurance.
Job 4:6 Is not your fear of God your confidence and the integrity of your ways your hope?
Proverbs 14:26 In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and one’s children will have a refuge.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.