Reasoning From Effects To Causes

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  • Read Job 20 as a family:

Zophar makes a final run at condemning Job as a wicked and unrighteous man. The words he says seem ultimately true in the judgement and eternal damnation of the wicked, but he is wrongly applying this to Job. In Zophar’s world, there is no mercy. It appears that he believes all blessings come through earning them from God. I could be wrong in this assessment, but he sure seems to have a works-based theology. 

Again I grieve for Job. He longs for someone, anyone to comfort him in his affliction. Yet none will come for many chapters.

It is good for us to reason from causes to effects. If we do wickedness, cursing will follow. But if we always reason back from effects to causes, we increase our chances to error like Zophar. Wicked behavior leads to cursing, but cursing does not prove wicked behavior; as in the case of Job. We must be cautious how quickly we throw stones of condemnation. 

Let’s practice a little:

John 15:7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. (Jesus speaking)

If you abide in Jesus, and his words abide in you; then whatever you wish for will be yours. True. Let’s say the wickedest person you know wishes for a new job on Monday, then lands the perfect job on Tuesday; does this mean that he/she was abiding in Jesus? 

  • Answer:

Let’s say a Christian Pastor approaches his elder board and says he wants to ask God for 100 new members in the next year. He claims the promise of John 15:7. A year rolls by and the membership has actually decreased by 25 people. Does this mean that the Pastor was not abiding in Jesus, nor was ever reading the Bible? 

  • Answer:

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