The Book of Job

Is This All? The Book of Job

“Man who is born of a woman is few of days and full of trouble. . . . look away from him and leave him alone, that he may enjoy, like a hired hand, his day. (Job 14:1, 6 ESV)

Have you ever paused for a moment, thought about your life, and wondered, “Is this all?” 

Many people wonder about this. For us believers, we understand that the world around us is not all that there is, for we await a new heavens and a new earth. But as is often the case, our theology often gives way to doubts, emotions, and anxieties especially when faced with life-changing trials. With little hope about the future, we wonder if there’s anything more.

Those without gospel light struggle even more. Secular phrases like “Life [stinks] and then you die” or “You only live once (YOLO)” characterize the idea that this life is all there is, so we better live it up. For those with resources to “live it up,” this concept provides a justification for recklessness. For those who lack those resources, or worse, live in poverty and suffering, this concept is a fast route to depression.

If there is no good God behind all this, no eternal purposes, no afterlife, no vindication – if this is all, and nothing more – then what is the point? Why serve others? Why move forward? Why care about anyone other than myself? Or, why even care about myself?

You see quickly how an eternity-less perspective can quickly bring about despondency and hopelessness. 

Job is no stranger to this kind of thinking. In chapter 14, Job cries out that man is born for nothing but trouble, and wishes God would just leave him alone so he can enjoy himself, then die. After all, there’s nothing beyond the grave – it’s just one long sleep.

Or is it?

One of the themes of the Book of Job is that there is an unseen realm, where behind the scenes of everyday life, a cosmic battle is raging, and a good, wise, and eternal God is ruling. Job doesn’t see this, nor do his friends. They are stuck in the moment. But God is in it for the long run.

This Sunday, we will jump from despondency to hope. Job chapter 42 presents to us a wonderful account of restoration, as Job receives back from God more abundant blessings than he previously had. God is in the restoration business. And because God is faithful to restore, we can have hope that this life is not all that there is. With God, there is so much more.