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The Book of Job and Sermons in August

• Daniel Baker

Posted in Bible, Sanctification, Sermons, Suffering

This Sunday we begin a new sermon series, Wisdom for Suffering. The idea of this series is to take four books in the Wisdom Literature of the Bible and approach them with this question, "What does this have to tell me about suffering?" The sermons will look at the book of Job (Aug. 2), the book of Psalms (Aug. 9, 16), the book of Proverbs (Aug. 23), and the book of Ecclesiastes (Aug. 30).

The issue of suffering is a massive and complex one. This is true at a personal level, because my suffering has unique elements to it that differ from yours. It's also true because there are so many sources of our suffering--disease, relational strife, sin and its consequences, unemployment, genetic idiosyncracies, etc.

Because of this the Bible does not have one message to the suffering. It has many. It's important to take time to hear some of that variety so we can face our suffering or someone else's with more than the one or two go-to texts that work for us. Romans 8:28 is an important word for the suffering, but it's far from the only one.

It may not be practical for you to read all the material before we preach it, but for some of you maybe August could be a good time to read a lot of Scripture. Maybe this could be a month of reading extra to refresh your soul. Be ambitious and read all of Job before Sunday, Psalms 1-75 for Aug. 9 and Psalms 76-150 for Aug. 16, all of Proverbs by Aug 23, and all of Ecclesiastes by Aug. 30. You learn things by reading an entire book quickly that you miss when you read it slowly (and vice-versa, of course).

If that seems impossible, then try this:

  • Read Job 1-5 and 38-42 before Aug. 2;
  • Read Psalms 1-3, 21-23, 46, and 51-53 by Aug. 9;
  • Read Psalms 61-63, 73, 101-103, and 121-34 by Aug. 16;
  • Read Proverbs 1-10 by Aug. 23;
  • Read Ecclesiastes by Aug. 30

That will give you some familiarity with the passages before the sermons.

We look forward to what God will do in our hearts through this unique part of our Bibles.

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