For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down, that it will sprout again, and that the tender branch thereof will not cease. Though the root thereof wax old in the earth, and the stock thereof die in the ground; Yet through the scent of water it will bud, and bring forth boughs like a plant (Job 14:7-9).
Job is speaking here so eloquently and seriously about death. With all that had happened to him, it would be hard to imagine that death would not have crossed his mind. As a matter of fact, this is not the first time he speaks of it. On another occasion he had spoken of death separating us from the world in which we live (7:9-10).
In these quoted verses, Job is comparing the death of man to the death of a tree or similar vegetation. He speaks of the fact that if a tree or plant is cut down, but you leave the stem or trunk in the ground, then this tree or plant could regrow and come back to life. Death is not final for this tree or plant.
Death for man is a very different thing. When a man dies, he will not return to the life he once had. Man cannot be revived by water or sunlight to live again. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment (Heb. 9:27).
This is not to say there is no life after death. Job is not saying that at all. The fact is that life after death will not be as life is before death. When a person dies, they face judgment as the aforementioned scripture says.
This judgment is a look at one's life on earth to determine if that person has the blood covering of Christ applied to their life. Following this judgment, those who are without Christ are destined to Hell's eternal prison. Then shall He say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels (Matt. 25:41). Those who have accepted Christ's free gift of forgiveness will be welcomed into heaven. His Lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord (Matt. 25:21).
Death is not the end as many would have us believe. It is only a transition from a temporary existence into a permanent one. However, this temporary existence is very important. The life we live and the choices we make determine whether our names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life, thereby assuring us of our home in heaven.
And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works (Rev. 20:12).
Thought for Today:
Even in times of suffering, God empowers us to be a testimony for Him.
14:5 days are determined . . . with Thee, allotted time to live depends on You; 15:4 restrainest, hinder; 15:25 strengtheneth himself against the Almighty, defies the Almighty; 15:26 upon the thick bosses of his bucklers, with massive shields; 15:27 collops of fat, figuratively speaking, blinded by self-importance and wealth; 15:29 prolong the perfection thereof, continue the harvest, the abundant crops; 15:34 fire shall consume the tabernacles of bribery, their houses shall be burned with fire; 16:12 broken me asunder, thoroughly crushed me; 16:13 reins, heart and mind – the center of emotions; poureth out my gall, leaves me no hope of life.
Through the smiting of Job (Job 16:10). Christ also was struck by those who ridiculed Him (Matt. 27:29-44; John 18:22-23; 19:2-3; Ps. 22:7-8; 109:25; Is. 53:3-5,7-10).
Prayer Suggestion: Ask the Lord to give you discernment and an understanding heart (I Kings 3:9).
Optional Reading: > Ephesians 1
Memory Verse for the Week: Ecclesiastes 12:13