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~ Day Twenty-Four ~
MAGNIFY
No Other Name
The Book of Job ~ Chapter Twenty-Four
"Since times are not hidden from the Almighty,
why do those who know Him see not His days?"
(Job 24:1)
MORNING MEDITATION
Boundary Stone
In ancient times stones were used to mark the boundaries of properties. God's instructions for property boundaries were set in stone in the Law of Moses. "You shall not remove your neighbor's landmark, which the men of old have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess" (Deuteronomy 19:14). The Law warned that altering these boundary lines with the intent of expanding the boundaries of one's land to improve the size of one's own personal property at the expense of someone else would bring special judgment from God. "Cursed is the one who moves his neighbor's landmark" (Deuteronomy 27:17). Removing a landmark was far more than moving a stone. It was changing a property line that would cheat another family out of the inheritance of the land that God had given them. "Do not remove the ancient landmark which your fathers have set" (Proverbs 22:28).

"You who laid the foundations of the earth,
so that it should not be moved forever...
You have set a boundary that they may not pass over,
that they may not return to cover the earth."
(Psalm 104:5, 9)

God sets boundaries to protect His creation and His people. The ocean has a shoreline, so that the waters don't flood the land. Boundary lines are marked out to protect private property. The Ten Commandments provide a moral guard rail to protect the moral health of the world. Boundaries are set to provide people with a certain sense of security and public trust that are necessary for society to function. But when evil people ignore these set boundaries to take advantage of the helpless and most vulnerable of society, as has been the tendency of the wicked in all ages, civil unrest and societal chaos ensue. These ancient landmarks are standing witnesses to the people's rights, and the removal of them leads to disputes, fighting, and wars. In ancient days, a thief could steal part of someone's land by moving the landmark, but not without the judgment of God coming upon him. "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). In our modern times, many indispensable landmarks have been removed to our detriment, which have robbed the current generation of their spiritual inheritance and liberties in a land whose Constitution was meant solely for "a moral and religious" people: The removal of student prayer in public schools in 1962; the removal of school Bible readings and the Lord's Prayer in 1963; the removal of the Ten Commandments from being posted in 1980; the removal of benedictions and invocations from school activities in 1986, 1989, and 1992. "Do not remove the ancient landmark, nor enter the fields of the fatherless; for their Redeemer is mighty; He will plead their cause against you" (Proverbs 23:10, 11). Job lived in the days of the Patriarch's, he struggled to understand the Lord's permissive will in allowing the injustices he saw in those ancient days, but God was teaching His servant to trust Him even in the dark to believe that He would one day execute justice on the earth. The Redeemer is coming! He is mighty to save! Let us praise God for the spiritual eyes He has given us to see His trustworthy, sovereign, invisible hand at work in these dark days, and let us pray fervently for the boundary stone He has set up in this world - His Church - to be the witness we are meant to be, marking the path which leads the poor, lost wanderer in this wilderness world to the green pastures of salvation's peace and rest found only in Jesus Christ! "Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together" (Psalm 34:3).

"For behold, the stone
that I have laid before Joshua:
Upon the stone are seven eyes.
Behold, I will engrave its inscription.'
says the LORD of hosts,
'And I will remove the iniquity of the land in one day.
In that day,' says the LORD of hosts,
'Everyone will invite his neighbor
under his vine and under his fig tree.' "
(Zechariah 3:9, 10)
AFTERNOON DEVOTION
Read: Job Chapter Twenty-Four

"There are those who rebel against the light;
they do not know its ways nor abide in its paths."
(Job 24:13)

Job's friends tried to offer their own explanations for what had happened to him and told him what he needed to do to remedy his tragic situation; but what Job needed most from his friends was consolation, not explanations. He certainly didn't need their form of reasoning nor the manner in which they were presenting it. They tried to convince him that God always judges the wicked, and that he was obviously suffering because of his own sin and rebellion, so all he needed to do was repent and everything would return to normal. From his perspective, Job saw things quite differently. He had observed that the wicked don't usually suffer calamity, in fact, more often than not the ungodly lived prosperously, while it was the godly that suffered unjustly. Job refuted their arguments by presenting the plight of the poor and the many injustices they suffered at the hands of evil men who were never punished. "The dying groan in the city, and the souls of the wounded cry out; yet God does not charge them with wrong" (Job 24:12). Contrary to what his friends believed, the ungodly were getting away with murder and robbing people blind, and God wasn't doing anything about it or charging anyone with a crime. God wasn't stepping in and stopping all these injustices. Instead of putting an end to their reign of terror, God was actually permitting it. But why? There are many things that happen in this world which God allows by His sovereign permissive will that we just can't understand or explain, even if we tried. The Lord allowed His highly-esteemed servant Job to take a walk in the dark in order that he might gain perspective on human suffering and a deeper understanding of His sovereign will. In that dark isolation chamber, where God was silent and all seemed hopeless, the true light began to dawn. Job's willingness to yield to the pressure coming at him from all sides, and to make a bold declaration of faith to trust God despite the pain, unlocked the door and allowed Job to enter into a new realm of spiritual life and light. In the darkest hours of his own experiences Job was able to see more clearly that the things that were happening to him were not meant to be explained, and he was able to gain a greater sensitivity to the many other weak and powerless souls who were being oppressed and suffering gross injustices in the world. No matter how much they argued or how hard they tried, Job's friends could not fit God's workings and ways into a neat and tidy box that they could apply as a blanket explanation to every situation, and neither should we. Like Job, we must learn to trust God to be God, and to trust that He knows what He's doing and that He also knows the reason why He is doing what He does. "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways," says the LORD. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts" (Isaiah 55:8, 9). The Lord doesn't owe us any explanations, nor are we, like Job's friends, to provide our own, instead we are to rely on what He has revealed to us in His Word. Let's be careful not to limit God to the realm of our own understanding and apply our own blanket explanations to the hurting people around us. Rather, let us offer them the comfort God supplies from His Word and pray for God's grace to give them the strength they need to travel the road the Lord has purposed for them which will lead to greater spiritual light and deepening intimacy with God. It may be difficult for us to understand and accept, but for now the righteous will endure undeserved suffering, the ungodly will be permitted to do evil, and not everyone will healed this side of heaven. God will eventually judge the wicked, but He will do so in His own perfect time; and our lowly and sick bodies will be transformed and conformed to the glorious body of Jesus Christ (Philippians 3:21)! In the meantime, we have a divine opportunity and duty, using what we've learned from our own experiences in the dark, to help others find their way out of the dark into the light of salvation."Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths" (Proverbs 3:5, 6).

"And this is the condemnation,
that light has come into the world,
and men loved darkness rather than light,
because their deeds were evil.
For everyone practicing evil hates the light
and does not come into the light,
lest his deeds should be exposed.
But he who does the truth comes to the light,
that his deeds may be clearly seen,
that they have been done in God."
(John 3:19-21)
EVENING PRAYER
"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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MAGNIFY No Other Name
A 45-day devotional prayer and fasting journey through the Books of Job and Joel
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Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New King James Version,
copyright (c) 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.