I NEED a new phone. I NEED a new car. I NEED a new job.
We certainly have needs in our everyday lives. Obviously, we need food and drink. We need clothing and shelter. We need medicine when we are sick. And yet, while we realize there is a clear distinction between “want” and “need,” we often blur that line.
You look around and see all the cool, new gadgets. You know they are blessings from God! But deep down, you also know... I don’t really “need” a new phone, new car, new television or a new iPad to survive. I just WANT it!
This week, we read about the third and final discussion between Job and his friends (Job 22-31). To this point, they’ve given poor advice to Job. They’ve argued with Job. And it doesn’t get much better this week.
Eliphaz said, “Is not your wickedness great? Are not your sins endless? Is not God in the heights of heaven? And see how lofty are the highest stars! Yet you say, What does God know?” (Job 22:5, 12-13). Bildad continued, “How then can a man be righteous before God? How can one born of woman be pure?” (25:4).
We’ve read about some great things Job has said throughout these chapters. But their words have clearly affected Job. “If only I knew where to find him (God); if only I could go to his dwelling! I would state my case before him and fill my mouth with arguments (23:3-4)… I cry out to you, O God, but you do not answer; I stand up, but you merely look at me. You turn on me ruthlessly; with the might of your hand you attack me” (30:20-21).
His friends wanted to justify themselves. Job wanted answers from God. But what did he need?
Now, Job’s friends did speak some truth. Was Job sinful? Yes, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God...” (Romans 3:23).
But their message was incomplete. They brought the Law, which points out our sin. But they failed to bring the Gospel. Job wanted answers. But what he needed to hear was God’s love for him. He needed to hear God’s grace. He needed the complete message. Yes, like you and me Job was sinful. But he also had God’s promise to save! He also had God’s promise that he would be “justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:24). That’s what he needed to hear, and so do we.
What do we want? We want more stuff. We want more friends. We want more money, a bigger home, more security. We want more time in the day. We want better health. We want answers from God.
But in the end, all we really need is to hear the Gospel. We need the good news of forgiveness and salvation through Jesus. We live in a sin-filled world that tempts us and appeals to our sinful nature. That’s why we need to constantly be in God’s Word—to hear we’re forgiven—to be reminded that we’re at peace with God—to fight off those temptations.
More stuff is cool. More stuff is fun. More stuff is a blessing from God!
But the Gospel is vital.
So stay connected to the Word! That’s what we really need.
Lord’s blessings on the rest of your week!