Job knew that there was a redeemer for him.
Job sensed that awareness of his trials and tribulations (at the hand of Satan) would be of benefit to future generations. He wanted his struggles to be written in a book. He spoke creative seeds of faith in Job 19:23 and 25 that gave birth to the Bible, the book in which his account is contained.
Not only that, he had an awareness that went beyond his self-justification, and he spoke of a redeemer.
Just what is a redeemer?
The word, redeem, has a number of extended meanings. A person might redeem a coupon at the grocery store or redeem a winning lottery ticket. These uses of the word are included in the first meaning. However, Job spoke of the redeemer in light of the second application.
1a) to buy back, repurchase; 1b) to get or win back.
2a) to free from what distresses or harms: as 2b) to free from captivity by payment of ransom, 2c) to extricate from or help to overcome something detrimental, 2d) to release from blame or debt: clear, 2e) to free from the consequences of sin.
Job knew that there was a redeemer for him, one who would ultimately make him acceptable to God by paying the price of his sins for him (Job 19:23, 25). This is the true sense of the word redeemer in the Bible. If each of us had to stand responsible for our own sins, then we would all be doomed to an eternal death. The fact that we have a redeemer, one who will pay the debt of sin on our behalf, offers us hope.
Job 19:23, 25 (NKJV)
23 Oh, that my words were written! Oh, that they were inscribed in a book!
25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth.
Wow! What a revelation Job declared in these verses. This is a clear reference to our redemption from sins through faith in Jesus, who would soon walk the earth! He still had limited understanding of the spiritual world, but God gave him the revelation of his Redeemer! He saw through time and knew that Jesus, his Redeemer, would walk upon the earth. That should make some tingles go up and down your body! This revelation could only come about through Job’s faith and his dedication to God.
Job continued to rebut accusations as Eliphaz berated him and attempted to indict him of his iniquity. Together, they bemoaned the apparent prosperity of the wicked and compared it to the sufferings of Job, yet Job maintained that the wicked would eventually get their just rewards. Eliphaz made observations about the blessings of God coming upon the righteous. However, Job maintained that he still needed to get his act together and then made one very interesting observation about the power of spoken words in Job 22:28.
Thou shalt also decree a thing, and it shall be established unto thee: and the light shall shine upon thy ways.
Job brought life to this principle in at least two instances. The first was destructive when he said, “For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me” (Job 3:25). His words were a manifestation of his heart posture when he continually entertained fear for his children (Job 1:5). This fear is what opened the door for the attacks of Satan. The second declaration was creative and life giving when he spoke of the book and his Redeemer. The creative force of the spoken word was first revealed to us when God spoke the world into existence (Genesis 1:1).
Job’s final declarations came to pass because he operated according to the pattern that God established in creation. Job actually was righteous before God, and his words were spoken in faith!
Job proclaimed his righteousness, faithfulness, and integrity and finally his three older friends, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar, relented. Elihu, the younger of the group, had kept quiet out of respect for his elders. However, he eventually became angered and could no longer hold his tongue because Job still justified himself. Elihu continued to cite God’s glory, righteousness, and all-powerful nature in Job:32:1-3.
Job 32:1-3 (CEV)
1 Finally, these three men stopped arguing with Job, because he refused to admit that he was guilty. 2 Elihu from Buz was there, and he had become upset with Job for blaming God instead of himself. 3 He was also angry with Job’s three friends for not being able to prove that Job was wrong.
Then God took over, and He pointed out how much He does, oversees, creates, and is responsible for. He also pointed out that Job’s own right hand could not save him. God chastised Job for contending with Him. Job finally realized that his own mouth had been the source of the problem all along in Job 40:4.
Job 40:4 (ERV)
I am not worthy to speak! What can I say to you? I cannot answer you! I will put my hand over my mouth.
God went on to point out Job’s inabilities and shortcomings and challenge Job’s attitude of self-justification in Job 40:9-14.
Job 40:9-14 (God speaking)
9 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him? 10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty. 11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him. 12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place. 13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret. 14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.
God presented a challenge to Job to prove that he was as mighty and powerful as Him. He provided several examples of global activities over which Job had no power. He then told Job that if he was not able to do these things, then he was also incapable of saving (redeeming) himself.
Job ultimately acknowledged the fact that he had a Redeemer and that his Redeemer (Jesus, as we will come to know) would walk the earth.
I hope my blog posts help you grow in your faith and Biblical understanding. I would like to invite you on a journey of further spiritual growth by purchasing the Ideolatry Book and Study Guide. Together, these tools will give you a strong Biblical foundation when life is difficult to understand.
May the Lord bless you and keep you... Dr. Rich Masek
To learn more about this subject, read Chapter 11,
Trials and Testing - What’s Up With Job?
in Ideolatry - God Is Not Your Problem
You can read about more subjects from Ideolatry below.