Bildad’s callous solution to Job’s suffering is simply, “If you are pure and upright, surely then he (God) will rouse himself for you and restore your rightful habitation” (Job 8:6); to which Job rightly replied, “Truly I know that it is so, but how can a man be in the right before God?” (Job 9:2). Job is saying, “You are right, Bildad, and that’s why you’re wrong.” Bildad believes you can be good enough before God, and Job despairs that good enough is impossible.
Job is a story of the contrast between two views of suffering, but, more importantly, two views of God. For Bildad, it is do right before God; for Job, it is be right with God. Bildad puts his faith in the character of man, because Bildad is looking for a solution. Job trusts in the character of God, because Job seeks a Savior. “There is no arbiter between us, who might lay his hand on us both” (Job 9:33), he cries, looking for someone to bring him together with God. As the story continues, Job’s hope will increase, “I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth (Job 19:25). Job is correct and his name is Jesus.
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
I can do this means I’m seeking a solution. I can’t do this admits I need a Savior. The Gospel begins its work when I realize I can’t solve me.
My Father in heaven, You are holy. I am amazed that You even think of me, because I am not holy. Far from it. Yet You love me and seek me out. You save me, not because I have something You want or need, but You save me out of Your own pleasure. This is astonishing love.
Thank you for Your Son, Jesus Christ. Through His obedience, His life, His death, His resurrection, I am made righteous and given the certainty of eternal life with You. You have given me all I ever need, and therefore I can love others the way You love, not to receive something, but for the sheer pleasure of loving and giving and serving.