Summary: Proposition: When you are suffering, it is easier to agonize over the loss of God’s outward blessing and proper relationship to God Himself, than keep an upbeat attitude and keep from sinning in one’s inward spirit.
STRUGGLING WITH SIN WITHIN DURING SUFFERING--Job 23:1-7, 15-17; 24:1, 4-6; 42:3-4
Proposition: When you are suffering, it is easier to agonize over the loss of God’s outward blessing and proper relationship to God Himself, than keep an upbeat attitude and keep from sinning in one’s inward spirit.
Objective: My purpose is to give hope those who are struggling with sin even when there seems there is no answer to our suffering.
Illus: The ’L I T T L E’ things that impacted lives on 9/11…
The head of a company survived 9/11 because his son started kindergarten that day and he wanted to be there to take him to class. Another fellow was alive because it was his turn to bring donuts. One woman was late because her alarm clock didn’t go off in time. One was late because of being stuck on the NJ Turnpike because of an auto accident. One man missed his bus. One spilled food on her clothes and had to take time to change. One’s car wouldn’t start. One went back to answer the telephone. One had a child that dawdled that day and didn’t get ready as soon as he should have. Of all things, one couldn’t get a taxi to stop that morning to pick them up. The one that struck me was the man who put on a new pair of shoes that morning, took his usual various means to get to work but before he got there, he developed a blister on his foot. He stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid. That is why he is alive today. Now when I am stuck in traffic, miss an elevator, have someone else’s actions delay me or just turn back to answer a ringing tele-phone... you know, all the little things that usually would annoy me - I want to stop think to myself, this is exactly where God wants me to be at this very moment.. Next time your morning seems to be going wrong, the children are slow getting dressed, you can’t seem to find the car keys, your car doesn’t start, you hit every traffic light, don’t get mad or frustrated -- God is at work watching over you. God may actually be blessing you with all those annoying little things even though we may not understand their possible purpose. That was the problem Job had. He didn’t know that God was watching over him and sparing his life. He didn’t know that Satan was causing all these problems and God did not allow him to touch his life. He was struggling within that even though he did not “sin with his lips,” Sin is not just an outward demonstration but also an inward struggle that causes us to sin at times. Remember Paul writes in Romans 7:14-17: “For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. 16If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.” He wants to live right, he wants to say the right things and think the right things, but before he knows what has happened, he has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. When God says something is good, the flesh wants just the opposite. When the Law says something is bad, the flesh says that it is good. It is a contest between the old man and the new man.” Job didn’t have the revealed Laws of God that shaped many of the lives of the OT saints.