Verses 29-30 “God does all these things to a person—twice, even three times—30 to turn them back from the pit, that the light of life may shine on them.”
During our time of talking about God speaking to us it may have occurred to one or more of us how we don’t always listen right away. In fact, we may ignore Him altogether. There are too many times we are wrapped up in what we want out of life and we close our ears and eyes to what He is wanting to do in and through us.
Elihu understood God doesn’t give up on us. The young man knew we don’t always listen on the first time He speaks but as we said the other day, he doesn’t throw us in with the enemy. If God gave us only one opportunity it would mean He isn’t gracious or merciful. Not listening and therefore not obeying means we are sinning, so if He didn’t try to get our attention again it would show He isn’t a forgiving God.
It is because of our disobedience and refusal to listen which has God trying the second, third and fourth time and beyond to see if we will listen and obey. He doesn’t give up on us so why don’t we listen the first time? What does persistence say about Him? What does our ignoring Him say about us? It says we are sinners, but then we already knew that about ourselves.
If we back up a few verses we will see how repenting is part of the solution. Not just repenting to God but repenting to others as well. James also encouraged Christians to confess their sins to each other (James 5:16). It is part of holding each other accountable. If Job had confessed a single sin, the other three friends would have let him be without constantly condemning him. But Elihu was pointing out how this repenting to God kept people out of the pit of hell.
Elihu knew if he could get Job to sit still and understand this truth of multiple chances to surrender and obey. It may not be about sinning by action but by denying God’s sovereign rule. That is why the young friend took the time to call Job out and tell him if he wanted to gain wisdom, he needed to sit back and be silent. God wasn’t done yet.
Making It Personal
When have you found it hard to sit back and listen for wisdom? Do you find it difficult to obey the first time God speaks to you? How practiced are you at repenting?
Making It Personal Kids
What does it mean to repent? Do you listen to mom and dad the first time they tell you to do something? How many times does Jesus have to tell you to do something?
Father, we repent that we don’t listen and obey the first time You speak to us. Help us desire to obey You the first time You speak so You can receive the glory sooner rather than later. In Jesus’ name, amen.