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~ Day Fifteen ~
No Other Name
The Book of Job ~ Chapter Fifteen
"Should a wise man answer
with empty knowledge,
and fill himself with the east wind?
Should he reason with unprofitable talk,
or by speeches with which he can do no good?"
(Job 15:2, 3)
Sundown last night marked the beginning of the Jewish feast, Sukkot, or "Booths," also known as the "Feast of Tabernacles." This week-long celebration of the fall harvest is a time to remember how the Hebrew people lived under God's protection and care during their forty years in the wilderness (Leviticus 23:33-43). Today, Jewish families continue to celebrate Sukkot by building temporary structures ("booths") outside their homes on the lawn or a balcony where they enjoy eating at least meal a day together. These shelters are made of wood and/or canvas and have a roof made with the branches and leaves from the citron, myrtle, palm, and willow, that they can look through and see the stars in the sky. The feast of Tabernacles is one of the three pilgrimage feasts which all Jewish males were required to go to Jerusalem to appear before the Lord (Deuteronomy 16:16). It is a festival of joy celebrating God's forgiveness and material blessings. On the last day of the feast, two ceremonies are performed which look forward to the coming Messiah. "For the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea" (Isaiah 11:9b). It was during this part of the feast, as the people marched around the altar carrying palm branches and the priest poured out water from the Pool of Siloam, that Jesus stood up and said, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water" (John 7:37, 38). This final festival of the fall feasting season represents the final harvest when all nations will share in the blessings of God's kingdom, and all believers will celebrate this feast with joy (Zechariah 14:16-19).

"And there will be a tabernacle for shade
in the daytime from the heat,
for a place of refuge,
and for a shelter from storm and rain."
(Isaiah 4:6)

The Lord God in love resolved that man would not always be banished from His presence, as had happened in the garden when sin first caused that great divide which destroyed man's sweet fellowship with God (Genesis 3:23, 24). He chose a people for Himself through which He would reveal His reconciling work in types and symbols displayed in the tabernacle in the wilderness. In the center and heart of the camp, the Lord would dwell with His people, teaching them to live a life of obedience and holiness, as He guided them by His light to the promised land. These types and shadows were fulfilled in the true Tabernacle, Jesus Christ, who became flesh and tabernacled among us. Jesus became the living embodiment of the tabernacle in the wilderness. The Divine Presence no longer dwelling in the midst of His people in a tent made by human hands, but rather taking up His abode in human flesh and having hands to touch all people with His love. "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1:14). The bright light of His presence over the mercy seat in the holy of holies, which only the high priest saw once a year, and the pillar of cloud and fire hovering over the camp, which assured them of His presence, are eternally eclipsed by the light of the glory of God which shines in the face of Christ, which all believers see. "For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" (2 Corinthians 4:6). Through His Word and His work, we behold all the intricate and infinite attributes of the One who is full of grace and truth. God's covenant people longed to reach the promised land which flowed with milk in honey, so they would never be hungry, but what they saw was just a shadow of the greater promise land of fellowship with Jesus Christ whose sweet and gracious words pour from His lips like honey to satisfy and fill our souls. "Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God" (Psalm 90:1-2). As we tabernacle with our Lord this week and feast upon the vast riches we have been given in Jesus Christ, let us be diligent to make the study of our lives that perfect pattern our gracious heavenly Father has given us in His Beloved Son, and be willing to yield more fully to His tender, transforming work within, so that we can become a source of protection and blessing for others. "See a king will reign in righteousness and rulers will rule with justice. Each man will be like a shelter from the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land" (Isaiah 32:1, 2, NIV).

"And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying,
Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men,
and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people.
God Himself will be with them and be their God.
And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes,
there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying.
There shall be no more pain,
for the former things have passed away."
(Revelation 21:3, 4)
Read: Job Chapter Fifteen

"Your own mouth condemns you, and not I;
yes, Your own lips testify against you."
(Job 15:6)

As we turn the page on the sad saga, which is poor Job's life, we are confronted (and confounded!) by more of the same abusive treatment from his so-called friends. As if the man didn't already have more pain and suffering than any one person should ever have to endure in this life, he also had to face daily the injurious words of his friends. "The words of a wise man's mouth are gracious, but the lips of a fool shall swallow him up; the words of his mouth begin with foolishness, and the end of his talk is raving madness" (Ecclesiastes 10:12, 13). Job's friends came out of the gate swinging in a second round of insults that were even worst than the first. Job had just endured an unimaginable loss in the death of all ten of his children at once, what he needed was comfort and compassion, not interrogation and blame. Yet sympathy was not the order of the day; his friends were more interested in defending their own counsel and lecturing him about respecting and listening to his elders. "What do you know that we do not know? What do you understand that is not in us? Both the gray-haired and the aged are among us, much older than your father" (vv. 9, 10). Instead of accusing Job of folly, Eliphaz should have seen his own in the graceless way he was treating his friend. A legalist at heart, Eliphaz threw the law in Job's face and demanded he give an account of the sin in his life. The story of Job demonstrates the work of God's grace in the life of His children. Where his friends failed, Job flourished because of God's grace in his life helping him to resist the temptation to cave under the pressure and giving him the strength to do what was right (2 Corinthians 12:9)! "But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. Nevertheless, when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror, the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord" (2 Corinthians 3:15-18). If we are learning anything at all in the course of this study of the life of Job, may it be the importance of words and the value of grace. May the Lord season our speech with salt and teach us how to demonstrate His grace (Colossians 4:5, 6). "But, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head - Christ - from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love." (Ephesians 4:15, 16). "Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together" (Psalm 34:3)!

"But may the God of all grace,
who called us to His eternal glory by Jesus Christ,
after you have suffered a while,
perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.
To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
(1 Peter 5:10, 11)
"LORD, I know that You can do everything,
and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You."
(Job 42:2)

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"Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord - that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful" (James 5:10).
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Setting the World on Fire for Christ ~ One Heart at a Time!
MAGNIFY No Other Name
A 45-day devotional prayer and fasting journey through the Books of Job and Joel
copyright (c) 2020 Traci A. Alexander. All Rights Reserved.

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New King James Version,
copyright (c) 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.