Blessed be the Name of the Lord

I use it all the time at the graveside.  "The Lord has given.  The Lord has taken away.  Blessed be the name of the Lord."  Job 1:21  I used it this past week.  It is an odd sounding statement.  It speaks of the blessings that the Lord gives to us and then the apparent decision of God to take those things away.  At first glance, God appears capricious.  He gives us things and then he takes them away.

How could Job then call for us to give a blessing to the Name of the Lord?  It is a good question because it is what I ask people to do all the time in the middle of their suffering.  I ask them to trust the Lord.  It is a hard thing to do when it seems God is allowing a lot of things to be taken away from you.

What we miss is that Job is giving a description of life and then the answer to it.  Life is a series of things gained and things lost.  It is successes and failures.  Good and bad.  Every mature adult understands that inevitability.  Job is not so much concerned with who we lay blame to as he is that we see the only thing consistent in the process.  It is the name and office of the Lord.  It is the person of Christ.

God doesn’t change.  He is as devoted to us when we enjoy success as when we suffer setbacks.  He is concerned with our spiritual condition and eternal future, not just seasonal successes and failures.  That is hard for us because we are seasonal people.  We live in the moment and too quickly forget all the blessings of God.  Sort of ‘What have you done for me lately, Lord’ attitude.

Job offers an approach to life that can sustain you in the worst of times.  (Job should know)  Job determined that everything would be used to bring honor to his Lord.  The good things.  The bad things.  He would not curse his God.  He would not take his life.  He would wait and trust and speak of God’s goodness. 

That is why you and I still talk about this man of God.  What are people saying about you.  See you tomorrow at Palm Sunday.


Published by Intentional Faith

Devoted to a Faith that Thinks

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