Yes you are right on that. I wrote impulsively and incorrectly the word philosophical when I should have written: “theological work containing points and principles of interest to such as Plato and Socrates.”
You know more about Plato than I do so I’ll take your word for that, nothing with cheerfulness that you think Job is far superior philosophically.
Thats a great idea so far as I am concerned. Justification by faith alone is one of my most treasured New Testament doctrines and I’m forever open to discussing it and learning more about it.
Another good idea. We can take the topics one at a time, no need to hurry. I have never done an indepth study of Job but I know from pecking around Job web sites in the last few days that the book is packed with some very profound ideas.
Thanks. And I do not think you’re getting anything wrong. I am not clear about the final conclusions you will draw, but it will be interesting to find out /grin.
Okay, we can go one question at a time and we can put Original Sin on the shelf for arguments sake so we can get at the points you are wanting to make.
Agreed. I have always understood the above to be the case, that Job was blameless and innocent.
Yes, in a way it does because Original Sin is going to insist that all men, including Job, deserved whatever was put upon them. Nonetheless, we can lay aside the New Testament doctrine of Original Sin in order for you to make your points, because I feel certain you are not working toward the voiding of the doctrine of Original Sin.
The New Testament doctrine of Original Sin is crucial to the very existence of Biblical Christianity because our sinful condition was the reason for the need of the Incarnation and the Atonement. Without the New Testament doctrine of Original Sin there is no need of a Savior because there is nothing to be saved from. Here man is not a sinner in need of salvation.
The New Testament doctrine of Original Sin will flat out deny that any human being ever was or could be (in his own righteousness) perfect and upright or true or blameless or just or pious or abstaining from every evil deed or innocent. Original sin would deny that God would ever confirm that this was the case for any human beings or that there was ever any man that did not deserve to be punished.
I do not believe you are heading in that direction because that would be building a miniature theology on one book in the Old Testament and using the gleanings from that book to basically void and gut the New Testament’s doctrines of the Person and work of Christ.
My larger point is this: In my view, any correct interpretation of the book of Job (or any other book in the Bible) will have to be consistent and harmonious with the New Testament’s theological system. James cannot be interpreted so as to contradict Paul, and Job cannot be interpreted so as to contradict Paul in Romans, Ephesians, Galations, etc.
As I say, I feel certain you are not heading in that direction, so I can lay aside the New Testament’s doctrine of Original Sin in order to get to your gleanings in Job.
The New Testament doctrine of Original Sin can be true and known to be true in the mind of God , and at the same time the book of Job can be interpreted to make a useful point.
The Theological System always carries more weight than the issolated passages and/or interpretations that appear to contradict it and which would if pressed destroy the whole system.
If we interpret the book of Job in such as way as to remove and void the New Testament doctrine of Original Sin then the Person and Work of Christ has been destroyed because there was then no need for Christ to die on the cross to save sinners because there were no sinners-by-nature to be saved in the first place.
** This Point Is The Vital Point: **
- Again, this is why I feel certain you are not heading in this direction, and so we can lay Original Sin aside while we get to your points from Job that can be harmonized with Original Sin.
Sometimes two things that appear on the surface to be contradictory are really harmonious and can be blended into a useful doctrine.
In other words in some very meaningful sense Job could have been perfect and upright and true and blameless and just and pious and abstaining from every evil deed and innocent, and God could have confirmed that this was the case and that Job did not deserve to be punished and at the same time the New Testament doctrine of Original Sin can be true and known to be true by God at the same time He was declaring Job to be innocent.
Again, just because two doctrines appear to be contradictory does not in fact mean that they are contradictory. We have agreed already that we mortals cannot comprehend the being of God and His thoughts and plans.
Two doctrines can even appear contradictory and remain appearing contradictory for as long as time endures. It is not written anywhere that we mortals have to know everything in this earthly life.
** End Vital Point. **
Sorry I rattled on and on about Original Sin but I felt I had to write that out for clarity’s sake.
I would agree with that in the sense that the use of “jealousy” is an anthropomorphism (“an interpretation of what is not human in terms of human characteristics”), for example God is said to have a “right arm”, to be “jealous” to get “angry” to “rest”, etc.
Permit me to include the following passage on Anthropomorphisms. I am well aware that you know what Anthropomorphisms are, but there may be some reading along here that have never had any reasons to give this any thought, and so here is a helpful passage:
** Anthropomorphism: God relates to us in human terms. **
Anthropomorphism comes from two Greek words: anthropos (man) and morphe (form). **Therefore, an anthropomorphism is when God appears to us or manifests Himself to us in human form or even attributes to Himself human characteristics. **
We see this all over the Bible – and rightly so. After all, we cannot ascend to where God is, but He can descend to where we are.
Following are a few verses from the Bible that ascribe to God human actions, attributes, and emotions.
Remember, God works with us in our time frame…
** Should we then assume that God would not relate to us in terms familiar to our own actions? **
** And should we not also assume that in so doing God will present aspects of Himself to us that would be paradoxical? **
Take for example the fact that God is all powerful (Jer. 32:17,27 ), **yet He rests **(Gen. 2:2).
We see that God is in all places (Psalm 139:7-12), yet He asks Adam, “Where are you?” (Gen. 3:9).
We see that God knows all things (1 John 3:20). Yet, we see that God says, “Now I know that you fear God…” (Gen. 22:12).
Following are various verses that demonstrate God’s human-like manifestation to us in actions, emotions, and physique. Thus we can see that such condescension on God’s part to us will naturally result in God saying things that will require a deeper examination:
1.Human actions - **changed mind, relented, remembered, rested. **A.Exodus 32:14, “So the Lord changed His mind about the harm which He said He would do to His people.”
B.2 Sam. 24:16, "When the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, the Lord relented from the calamity, and said to the angel who destroyed the people, “It is enough! Now relax your hand!”
C.Gen. 9:16, “When the bow is in the cloud, then I will look upon it, to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”
D.Gen. 2:2, “And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.”
2.Human emotions - sorrow, jealousy, pity, regret. A.Gen. 6:6, “And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.”
B.Exodus 20:5, “You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me.” …
D.1 Sam. 15:35, “And Samuel did not see Saul again until the day of his death; for Samuel grieved over Saul. And the Lord regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel.”
3.Human physique - hands, face, mouth, eyes, arm. A.Exodus 7:5, "And the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I stretch out My hand on Egypt and bring out the sons of Israel from their midst.”
B.Num. 6:24, “The Lord make His face shine on you, and be gracious to you.”
C.Psalm 33:6, “By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and by the breath of His mouth all their host.”
D.Psalm 34:15, “The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry.” …
4.Other - Wings A.Psalm 57:1, "Be gracious to me, O God, be gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge in Thee; and in the shadow of Thy wings I will take refuge, until destruction passes by."
Anthropomorphism: God relates to us in human terms. | Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry
The point being that God does not actually have an arm, face, ears, eyes, wings, hands, mouth, etc and He is not actually jealous in the sense that he experiences jealously as we human experience jealously.
But all these anthropomorphisms can easily be understood by we humans as a means for God to teach us truths about Himself.