“Have mercy on me, have mercy on me, O you my friends…
Why do you, like God, pursue me?…
I know that my Redeemer lives,
and at the last he will stand upon the earth.”
Job 19:21-22, 25
Despite his heart-wrenching circumstances, despite his friends’ accusing him of wrongdoing and guilt, Job still holds to his belief that God will redeem him. His Redeemer lives, and it is He who will stand at the last. Even when those around him are convinced he must be in the wrong and deserving of punishment, Job believes that God will be faithful to redeem him. That God will not abandon him completely or leave him standing in injustice. And when God does redeem him, no one will be able to refute His words.
But while Job’s statement here is good in that it shows hope in the character of God, we can see doubt woven throughout the majority of his laments. He questions his circumstances in a manner that shows he thinks that these actions of God are out of character. It seems that Job thinks God is acting against him wrongly, but in the end He will make it right. So he believes that the righteousness of God will eventually win out, but in his despair, Job just doesn’t see it now.
“Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said:…’Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it?…Will you even put me in the wrong? Will you condemn me that you may be in the right?’” (Job 38:1, 4-5, 40:8)
When circumstances and despair threaten to overwhelm us, it’s so easy to doubt the steadfastness of God. Everything around us shifts and changes. So we wonder if perhaps God has changed. Maybe not forever, but at least in this moment, He is against us or simply inactive.
I pray that our hearts would know this: He does not change. Ever. Righteousness is the very foundation of His throne (Psalm 89:14). Every single moment of every single day of your life, God is acting for you. For your good. For your joy. Displaying the radiant glory of His grace. All in flawless accord with His magnificent character.
There will be times—entire seasons—when we do not understand what God is doing. We may never understand why He chooses a certain path for us, closes wonderful-looking doors, or allows the unthinkable to happen. But He knows the plans He has for you. Plans of His heart which is overflowing with perfect, boundless love. Plans for good and never for evil. Plans to give you hope and a future. There has never been an instant in your life when He has forsaken you. There is not a detail He has overlooked.
So in your questions, hold fast to the unchanging character of your God. Your Redeemer lives, and He will stand not only at the last—He stands now, in the middle of your storm, in perfect love, unerring wisdom, and sovereign grace.