Audio Sermons

My Witness Is in Heaven (Job 15:1-17:16)

Robert E. Bell, 03/31/2019
Part of the Job series, presented at a Sunday Morning service

Today's scripture is Job 15-17. The eighth sermon in Pastor Bell's "Job" series.

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Job 15:1-17:16

1Then answered Eliphaz the Temanite, and said, 2Should a wise man utter vain knowledge, and fill his belly with the east wind? 3Should he reason with unprofitable talk? or with speeches wherewith he can do no good? 4Yea, thou castest off fear, and restrainest prayer before God. 5For thy mouth uttereth thine iniquity, and thou choosest the tongue of the crafty. 6Thine own mouth condemneth thee, and not I: yea, thine own lips testify against thee. 7Art thou the first man that was born? or wast thou made before the hills? 8Hast thou heard the secret of God? and dost thou restrain wisdom to thyself? 9What knowest thou, that we know not? what understandest thou, which is not in us? 10With us are both the grayheaded and very aged men, much elder than thy father. 11Are the consolations of God small with thee? is there any secret thing with thee? 12Why doth thine heart carry thee away? and what do thy eyes wink at, 13That thou turnest thy spirit against God, and lettest such words go out of thy mouth? 14What is man, that he should be clean? and he which is born of a woman, that he should be righteous? 15Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight. 16How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water? 17I will shew thee, hear me; and that which I have seen I will declare; 18Which wise men have told from their fathers, and have not hid it: 19Unto whom alone the earth was given, and no stranger passed among them. 20The wicked man travaileth with pain all his days, and the number of years is hidden to the oppressor. 21A dreadful sound is in his ears: in prosperity the destroyer shall come upon him. 22He believeth not that he shall return out of darkness, and he is waited for of the sword. 23He wandereth abroad for bread, saying, Where is it? he knoweth that the day of darkness is ready at his hand. 24Trouble and anguish shall make him afraid; they shall prevail against him, as a king ready to the battle. 25For he stretcheth out his hand against God, and strengtheneth himself against the Almighty. 26He runneth upon him, even on his neck, upon the thick bosses of his bucklers: 27Because he covereth his face with his fatness, and maketh collops of fat on his flanks. 28And he dwelleth in desolate cities, and in houses which no man inhabiteth, which are ready to become heaps. 29He shall not be rich, neither shall his substance continue, neither shall he prolong the perfection thereof upon the earth. 30He shall not depart out of darkness; the flame shall dry up his branches, and by the breath of his mouth shall he go away. 31Let not him that is deceived trust in vanity: for vanity shall be his recompence. 32It shall be accomplished before his time, and his branch shall not be green. 33He shall shake off his unripe grape as the vine, and shall cast off his flower as the olive. 34For the congregation of hypocrites shall be desolate, and fire shall consume the tabernacles of bribery. 35They conceive mischief, and bring forth vanity, and their belly prepareth deceit. 16:1 Then Job answered and said, 2I have heard many such things: miserable comforters are ye all. 3Shall vain words have an end? or what emboldeneth thee that thou answerest? 4I also could speak as ye do: if your soul were in my soul's stead, I could heap up words against you, and shake mine head at you. 5But I would strengthen you with my mouth, and the moving of my lips should asswage your grief. 6Though I speak, my grief is not asswaged: and though I forbear, what am I eased? 7But now he hath made me weary: thou hast made desolate all my company. 8And thou hast filled me with wrinkles, which is a witness against me: and my leanness rising up in me beareth witness to my face. 9He teareth me in his wrath, who hateth me: he gnasheth upon me with his teeth; mine enemy sharpeneth his eyes upon me. 10They have gaped upon me with their mouth; they have smitten me upon the cheek reproachfully; they have gathered themselves together against me. 11God hath delivered me to the ungodly, and turned me over into the hands of the wicked. 12I was at ease, but he hath broken me asunder: he hath also taken me by my neck, and shaken me to pieces, and set me up for his mark. 13His archers compass me round about, he cleaveth my reins asunder, and doth not spare; he poureth out my gall upon the ground. 14He breaketh me with breach upon breach, he runneth upon me like a giant. 15I have sewed sackcloth upon my skin, and defiled my horn in the dust. 16My face is foul with weeping, and my eyelids is the shadow of death; 17Not for any injustice in mine hands: also my prayer is pure. 18O earth, cover not thou my blood, and let my cry have no place. 19Also now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and my record is on high. 20My friends scorn me: but mine eye poureth out tears unto God. 21O that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleadeth for his neighbour! 22When a few years are come, then I shall go the way whence I shall not return. 17:1 My breath is corrupt, my days are extinct, the graves are ready for me. 2Are there not mockers with me? and doth not mine eye continue in their provocation? 3Lay down now, put me in a surety with thee; who is he that will strike hands with me? 4For thou hast hid their heart from understanding: therefore shalt thou not exalt them. 5He that speaketh flattery to his friends, even the eyes of his children shall fail. 6He hath made me also a byword of the people; and aforetime I was as a tabret. 7Mine eye also is dim by reason of sorrow, and all my members are as a shadow. 8Upright men shall be astonied at this, and the innocent shall stir up himself against the hypocrite. 9The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger. 10But as for you all, do ye return, and come now: for I cannot find one wise man among you. 11My days are past, my purposes are broken off, even the thoughts of my heart. 12They change the night into day: the light is short because of darkness. 13If I wait, the grave is mine house: I have made my bed in the darkness. 14I have said to corruption, Thou art my father: to the worm, Thou are my mother, and my sister. 15And where is now my hope? as for my hope, who shall see it? 16They shall go down to the bars of the pit, when our rest together is in the dust. (KJV)

Robert E. Bell
About Robert E. Bell: Born in Toronto, Ontario, Bob grew up in Rhode Island where his father pastored the same church for almost 50 years. The oldest of five sons, Bob attended Philadelphia College of Bible and graduated with a B.S. degree in Bible and Christian Education in 1973. He earned his M.A. in Christian Ministry from Wheaton College Graduate School in 1974. After marrying, Bob and his wife Melody moved to Lancaster, Pennsylvania. His first full-time church ministry was at Westminster Presbyterian Church where he served as the assistant-to-the-pastor and later as an elder. Daughter Alison arrived in July 1977 and son Andrew in March of 1981. In August of 1981 the family moved to St. Louis, Missouri where Bob enrolled in Covenant Theological Seminary and graduated with his M.Div. degree in 1984. While in seminary he served as the Church Administrator while their church was without a pastor and then worked as an Admissions Counselor for the Seminary. Their son Aaron was born soon after graduation. Bob has since served churches in Ruston, Louisiana and St. Peters, Missouri. He has been the pastor of Aisquith since December 1994. His two oldest children are married and live in the Baltimore area. He and Melody have seven grandchildren.
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