Posts Tagged ‘Job 23:10-11’

Come forth as gold

March 2, 2018

 

Job 23--10

The Verse of the Day for March 2, 2018 is found in Job 23:10-11 (NIV):

But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed his steps; I have kept to his way without turning aside.

A previous blog entry made reference to a life-changing teaching from Dr. David Jeremiah, who taught on the refining fire of God more than ten years ago. Here are comments from an excerpt from a journal entry made following the teaching:

It is one of the most moving tapes I have heard, as he relates how God puts us through the process of refining in order to extract the precious metal from within us.  In the same way that a refiner breaks the stones and sends them through the fire over and over again, so God sends us through the fires of life in order to extract and purify the gold within our souls.  God removes our need to feel secure, to be in control, and to survive by putting in situations that try us, “fiery temptations” that prove who we really are.  God controls the entire process, determining the timing, the temperature, the target, and the terms of the fire. Our tendency is respond with a series of questions as to “why?”: “why me?”, “why now?”, and “why not someone else?”  Like children, we continually ask why when God, as a good parent, is not obligated to explain that which children cannot understand at the time they ask “why.”  The only questions we should be asking are “What are you trying to teach me?” and “What are you trying to change in me?”

In reflecting upon the passage from Job, my mind is flooded with an understanding of what is transpiring when like Job, we are tested on every hand. Another related passage also comes to mind from James 1:2-4 (NLT):

[Faith and Endurance] Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

This particular passage also reminds us that as we wait on the Lord, we are not to waiting in a state of anxiety, not in a state of doubt or fear, as we encounter fiery trials.  Instead, the state in which we wait is the state of patience—we are patiently waiting.

In reflecting upon these passages, the whole idea of trials or troubles as tests comes to mind, as I recall a poem written from the perspective of a “student/teacher”:

All Tests

“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and

Challenges come at you from all sides.” [The Message]

 James 1:2

 

With zeal we make our calling and election sure,

As we attempt to complete yet another test.

As ever eager students, we will do our best.

God promised good to us; His Word our hope secure.

Lord, search us and know us—discern our motives are pure.

Our souls now anchored in hope; in you we find rest.

You are our light, even when times seem their darkest.

As a patient father who seeks to reassure

Children, so the Master Teacher shows His design:

All tests are formed not to punish but to refine.

Despite shortcomings and failures we all have made,

You are gracious and generous each time You grade.

With each assignment, we seek to excel, not just pass,

But graduate with honors, at the top of our class.

Hebrews 10:36 also offers this reminder in the New Living Translation:

Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.

Knowing this, we can count it all joy when we encounter various fiery trials that test our faith and build patient endurance. Like Job, we, too, shall “come forth as gold,” as Harvest Worship Band reminds us:

When He has tested me, I will come forth as gold

March 2, 2015

Job 23--10

The Verse of the Day for March 2, 2015 is found in Job 23:10-11 (NIV)

But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed his steps; I have kept to his way without turning aside.

As I reflected upon this passage, my thoughts turned to Psalm 139, all of which can be can be viewed as an invitation to deepest, divine inspection. The Psalmist opens with recognition that God knows all about us. He has made, formed and created us. Indeed, we are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” The celebrated psalm closes with a heartfelt request:

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139 brings to mind a previous blog entry “Try me: Search me again” which I have modified and re-post today, as another dose of good medicine from the shelves of Dr. J’s Apothecary Shoppe.

The original blog entry made reference to a life-changing teaching from Dr. David Jeremiah, who taught on the refining fire of God more than ten years ago. I discuss the message in this excerpt from a journal entry made following the teaching:

It is one of the most moving tapes I have heard, as he relates how God puts us through the process of refining in order to extract the precious metal from within us. In the same way that a refiner breaks the stones and sends them through the fire over and over again, so God sends us through the fires of life in order to extract and purify the gold within our souls. God removes our need to feel secure, to be in control, and to survive by putting in situations that try us, “fiery temptations” that prove who we really are. God controls the entire process, determining the timing, the temperature, the target, and the terms of the fire. Our tendency is respond with a series of questions as to “why?”: “why me?”, “why now?”, and “why not someone else?” Like children, we continually ask why when God, as a good parent, is not obligated to explain that which children cannot understand at the time they ask “why.” The only questions we should be asking are “What are you trying to teach me?” and “What are you trying to change in me?”

In reflecting upon the passage from Psalm 139, my mind is flooded with an understanding of what is transpiring in my life at this time. God is doing precisely what I asked Him to do in two poems “Try Me” and “Search Me: A Song for You” both of which express my deepest desire:

Try Me

Psalm 139:23-24

 

Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary. . .

pure and holy, tried and true. . .

 

Purify my motive; assay my devotion;

weigh each desire, carat by carat, dram by dram.

In the refining fire of your furnace try me.

Test the mettle of my soul; scrape away all dross,

all debris that would adulterate my intents

and leave behind the purity of ore that I

may see my face reflected in the pool of gold.

I long to take the treasure of your precious Word,

securely hide it in the lock box of my heart

and as a faithful son, hand you the only key.

 

“Lord Prepare Me to be s Sanctuary” expresses in music the essence of that request.

Another poem that could be described as “the second verse of the same song” is also inspired in part by the same verses from Psalm 139:            

Search Me: A Song for You

“I know your image of me is what I hope to be

If I’ve treated you unkindly, can’t you see

That there’s no one more important to me.

Oh, won’t you please look through me. . . “

“A Song for You”–Leon Russell

                                              

Search me, O God, and know my heart:

try me, and know my thoughts:

And see if there be any wicked way

and lead me in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139: 23-24

 

The whole of my life unfolds as an open book,

Known and read by all with eyes to see, page by page.

As you read each line, take an even closer look;

Probe the depths of each of my thoughts, as you engage

The text, searching my heart for its deepest meaning.

Your searching and knowing is the ultimate scan.

As you discern my essence, my inmost being,

I will align myself according to your plan.

Beyond MRIs, devices to diagnose,

You see and assess any abnormality.

In these times of watchful waiting, you draw me close:

Despite what tests reveal, you will heal and deliver me.

At times I’m overwhelmed and don’t know what to do,

“But we’re alone now, and I’m singing this song to you.”

 

Hillsong offers a moving rendition of “Search Me O God,” an appropriate musical accompaniment to close today’s blog entry:

 

 

A Five-fold Prayer: Inspect Me

February 2, 2012

Job 23:10-11 KJV

But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.

At the heart of the Verse of the Day for March 2, 2014 is the reality that when Job was tried, and indeed, he endured many hard trials, he believed that he would come forth as gold.  The idea of being tried or tested brought to mind a blog entry “Inspect Me” from a series called “A Five-fold Prayer: Direct Me-Inspect Me-Correct Me-Protect Me-Perfect Me. The second in the series is re-posted here:

Slide5

This blog entry is the second part of “A Five-fold Prayer,” a series of commentaries based on a statement regarding the ways of God when we find ourselves in perplexing situations that challenge our faith. In such instances, God is endeavoring to do one or a combination of five things: “Direct you; Inspect you; Correct you; Protect you; Perfect you.” After hearing those words, I took those five verbs and formed them into a request, a petition, a prayer to God for me.  I asked God to become the initiator of the action, and I would become the object of his action. I also examined each of the verbs with scriptural illustrations from the Old Testament and New Testament and composed a prayer/psalm inspired by each verb at the end of each section related to each of the five verbs. In writing out my personal application of the scriptures, I also incorporated music related to the verbs as well. In Part 2 I ask God to “Inspect Me.”

Inspect : Since there is no word “inspect” used in the King James Version,  I used “search” that has the following definition and found in the following scriptures:

A definition of the word “search” and accompanying scriptures

Psalm 139:1-5, 23-24:

O LORD, You  have searched me, and known me.

2  You know my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

3  You encompass my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways.

4  For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, You knowest it altogether.

5   You have beset me behind and before, and laid Your hand upon me.

23  Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:

24  And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

I Chron 28:9:

9  As for you, Solomon my son, know thou the God of your father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of you; but if you forsake him, he will cast you off for ever.

Jeremiah 17:10:

I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.

Romans 8:27-28

27  And he that searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

28  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Inspect me

   Try Me

Search me, O God, and know my heart:

try me, and know my thoughts:

And see if there be any wicked way in me,

and lead me in the way everlasting.

 

Lord, Prepare me to be a sanctuary. . .   

 pure and holy, tried and true. . .

Purify my motive; assay my devotion;

weigh each desire, carat by carat, dram by dram.

In the refining fire of your furnace try me.

Test the mettle of my soul; scrape away all dross,

all debris that would adulterate my intents

and leave behind the purity of ore that I

may see my face reflected in the pool of gold.

I long to take the treasure of your precious Word,

securely hide it in the lock box of my heart

and as a faithful son, hand you the only key.

“Search Me, Lord” rendered by Brother Joe May, “The Thunderbolt of the Middle West,” the reigning male Gospel singer of the 1950s, embodies this prayer in song:

“While I’m down here praying, Lord search my heart” by Mahalia Jackson, the most celebrated female Gospel singer of her era, offers a similar request in song:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQt7pOSQFm8

“Lord, Prepare Me to be a Sanctuary,” one of my all-time favorite songs of worship expresses the same desire revealed in Psalm 139 and other scriptures.

“Search me, O God,” part of David’s prayer to God and mine.