I found a 110 year-old book, “The New Idea,” that summarizes everything known in 1904. It’s a fun read. We’ve learned a bit more since that book was published.
What is the oldest book you have ever seen? The most ancient book in the Bible may well be Job not Genesis. Genesis, the first book in the Bible, was written by Moses. The folks that study these things tend to believe Job came before Moses, probably even before God called Abraham. If so, then Job’s understanding of Who God is, and what God is like, is as early as it gets. Was Job’s God the same as the God of Jesus?
Consider what Job said:
“I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!” (Job 19:25-27)
Whoa… When I grapple with these words and ideas, the small hairs on the back of my neck stand to attention! Not only did Job know God, but He knew God’s future plan:
– He would send a Redeemer (One Who would purchase us from slavery)
– This Redeemer was already alive in Job’s time and would still be alive “in the end.”
– Job’s Redeemer is God.
– Job knows that, after he has died, after his body has decayed, he will see his Redeemer.
– Job knows his “seeing” will be a physical reality – that he will see him with the eyes a restored body.
– In the midst of his worldly trials, he yearns for this future certainty.
All those assertions, convictions of this most ancient witness, are truths taught by Jesus in the New Testament. Ponder how long-lasting and unchanged those ancient concepts of God have been! Job must have had a sense, when he uttered those words, that he had tapped into a deep, eternal truth. Because he preceded them with this urgent appeal:
““Oh, that my words were recorded, that they were written on a scroll, that they were inscribed with an iron tool on lead, or engraved in rock forever!” (Job 19:23-24)
He got that right, too…