Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10 - The End of the Lord

Days of Praise
The End of the Lord
December 10, 2009
"Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy." (James 5:11)
The Lord often allows godly men and women to go through severe difficulties, but the apostle says we should "count them happy which endure." "Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: . . . Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven" (Matthew 5:10-12).
The patriarch Job is the classic example. He was a godly and righteous man in the highest degree, according to the testimony of God Himself, who said that "there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil" (Job 1:8). Yet God allowed Satan to take away all his possessions, and his health, and even his children. Nevertheless, Job remained faithful and testified: "For I know that my redeemer liveth . . . yet in my flesh shall I see God" (Job 19:25-26).
The chastenings of the Lord may seem grievous, especially when they are not sent as punishment for known sin but rather for development of character in likeness to Christ, but "the end of the Lord" (that is, "the final goal and purpose of the Lord") always manifests His love and tender mercy.

In Job's case, once the testing was finished, "the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before" (Job 42:10), giving him precisely twice as many head of livestock as those he had lost (compare Job 1:3; 42:12). In addition, "he had also seven sons and three daughters," precisely the number who had died in a great storm at the beginning of his troubles (Job 1:2,18-19; 42:13). He knew he would also see his first set of children again, because they, like he, would live again, giving him twice as many children as he had before. The "end of the Lord" is tender mercy, always, to those wh o love Him. HMM

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