Cool Hand Luke: ‘He Beat You with Nothin!’ Atheist search for the Origin of Life. Part 7
The Kennedy-Khrushchev Rapport and the Man to Uncover JFK’s Assassination: Part 3

Job 19 — The Redeemer

Feet held fast in the stocks of tragedy, breakdown and debility, Job is pummeled on all sides—to the point where he may lose track of his own head. He cries:

“If only my words were written down, If only they could be inscribed in a book! O that they were carved forever in the rock, With an iron stylus and lead!” (19:23-24)

Yes, put them down somewhere before these louts pound me into mush with their specious words!—cisterns that don’t hold water, polished marble gravestones that conceal rotted bones. Has anyone been there? You know what’s what, but the hounds are tearing at your flesh to the point you may lose track of it. If only it was written down!

God has it in for him. He’s thrown him down, uprooted his hope. He sends his troops to finish off the job—troops in the form of brothers driven from him, friends who abandon him, servants who jeer him, louts who have gained the upper hand and taunt him, other friends who now detest him, and comforters who beat him up. (19: 8-19)

And yet—and yet— “For I well know that my redeemer is alive; He will come later and rise up over the earth. After my skin has thus been destroyed, While yet in my flesh, I will see God, Whom I will see for myself, Whom my own eyes will see, not someone else’s.” (25-27)

He’s not dead yet, just as the Monty Python Dark Ages peasant thrown on the corpse-wagon was not dead yet. His hope is not dead yet. Almost, stretched to the breaking point it is, but not quite dead yet. There will somehow be a last day in which all is set right.

“But deep inside I feel overwhelmed!” (vs 27) He barely seems to know what he is saying.

To his tormentors: “For you say, ‘In what way are we persecuting him?’ Since the root of the problem is with me.” (vs 28)

Yeah, it’s his own fault, they say. So if we just point that out to him, how does that become a problem?

“Be in fear of the sword yourselves,” Job tells them.  “For the sword brings punishment against errors; You should know that there is a judge.”


Says Chesterton: [Job finally] demands an accounting from God, but “in the spirit in which a wife might demand an explanation from her husband whom she really respected. He remonstrates with his Maker because he is proud of his Maker. He even speaks of the Almighty as his enemy, but he never doubts, at the back of his mind, that his enemy has some kind of a case which he does not understand, In a fine and famous blasphemy he says, ‘Oh that mine adversary had written a book!’ It never really occurs to him that it could possibly be a bad book.”

A redeemer. (v 25) He knows that one will come later and ‘rise up over the earth’—it will be a big deal. Bells and whistles go off in JW land at mention of a redeemer, for it is a cornerstone Bible theme. Naomi and her makeshift clan had fallen on hard times, but it was all made right by a redeemer (repurchaser—the word can be rendered either way). It foreshadows the Christ’s (Hebrew: Messiah) own role as repurchaser. Adam sells out his offspring through disobedience, bringing upon all of them the penalty for sin. Jesus buys back by paying just the right price exactly offsetting that of Adam, the only other perfect man who’d ever existed. Put faith in that arrangement and you’re golden, so long as you hold to it.

Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because they had all sinned. (Romans 5:12)

The wages sin pays is death, but the gift God gives is everlasting life by Christ Jesus our Lord. (6:23)

The first man Adam became a living person.” The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.  (1 Corinthians 15:25)

So, the redeemer verse is a big deal for Jehovah’s Witnesses, right up there with ‘Until I die I shall not take away my integrity,’ and ‘Have you seen the storehouses of snow that I’ve stocked up for the Great Day?’ Those verses comprise our own triumvirate of verses. There are a few others, but anything in the preamble of Job, chapters 1 and 2, doesn’t count, for it is just setting the stage.

Then there is the one about Job never being overly attentive to a virgin. (31:1) We tromp on that one for all it’s worth because we’re trying to delay our kids from sex until they’re ready—and ‘ready’ for us means, not only being no longer kids, but being married, and ideally married at a mature age—not just ‘at the bloom of youth’ age.

It’s not easy. The verse doesn’t even fit, really, and is better used as a stopgap against adultery. But we need all the help we can get. The young people creep closer and closer to this new thing that is sexual attraction. It is so tantalizing, so enticing. What’s all this fuss of the old people, with the cautions and dating restrictions? They edge in ever closer, till—like entering the threshold of a black hole, the strange force sucks them into an elongated two-mile strand of spaghetti.


******  The bookstore

Defending Jehovah’s Witnesses with style from attacks... in Russia, with the book ‘I Don’t Know Why We Persecute Jehovah’s Witnesses—Searching for the Why’ (free).... and in the West, with the book, 'In the Last of the Last Days: Faith in the Age of Dysfunction'


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