Paul is grateful for the church at Thessalonica. He was rushed out of town after only a seemingly few weeks of missionary work. Yet this young church not only thrived but became an exemplary church. Many heard of their faith and work. We want to be known for our faithfulness, labor of love, and steadfastness of hope.
Jesus demonstrated the attitudes of humility and service when he washed His friends' feet. By doing so, He showed His follows how we should serve others. Christians can be servants in the kingdom and in their homes.
In the final section of Job, God confronts Job for his demands. Job who is seeking to defend his righteousness to his friends, has suggested God has unjustly punished him. Now God confronts Job. The end result is Job's repentance. But the section also reminds us that God has established order in all things.
Elihu appears suddenly on the scene of Job 32. He is not introduced beforehand nor is he mentioned after his speech. Why is he included in the story of Job? Does he play the role of youthful foolishness or is he foreshadowing God's own words? Sometimes we can act with arrogance.
Job makes a final attempt to understand his suffering. He seeks a day in court with God. He wants to know what he has done to deserve this suffering. Sometimes we suffer and it doesn't make sense to us why we are suffering so. Sometimes we bring greater suffering on ourselves we assume suffering is only caused as a consequence of sin.
In Job's quest to understand the reason for suffering he struggles to gain a handle. The narrator reminds us that wisdom is not easily found. We are reminded that wisdom begins with seeking God.
Job's friends had made several mistakes in their attempts to comfort Job. Yet they had good intentions. They could have abandoned him, but they did not. Their intentions may have been good, but it caused Job tremendous pain. Sometimes our intention may cause others pain or we may suffer pain at the hands of others' intentions.
Sometimes its hard to be faithful. We face trials and hardships. Job was in such a situation, yet he still remained loyal to God.
Job's friends started out right. Unfortunately, that didn't last long. They subscribed to a common belief found in antiquity - the "doctrine of retribution." This belief suggest people only suffer because of wrong or sin. Since Job was suffering he must not have been the man they thought he was. They tried to find blame for Job's suffering. Sometimes we seek answers for our suffering and look in the wrong places.