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The Bible In A Year: Day 61

Job 33-34
Psalm 58
Mark 14:1-11

Elihu begins here by reminded Job that he is just a man such as himself, but he’s going to succeed where the others failed in convincing Job he’s a sinner and deserves his punishment.

He paraphrases Job’s claims of innocence, but makes the mistake of thinking Job is claiming sinless. Job never claimed to be perfect or completely free from sin, he has always maintained that he is only unaware of a sin so serious to warrant what has happened as a consequence. But Elihu shows his youthful hubris towards the end of chapter 33 when he assumes to teach wisdom to Job.

Elihu’s speech in chapter 34 seems to be based on his misunderstanding of the words he overheard Job speaking. He comes to the defense of God’s justice and goodness, and so believes Job must be guilty based upon this. But Job has never claimed he’s completely without fault, he’s only maintained that if he is guilty of something serious he is completely unaware and would like it revealed to him so that he may repent of it. This isn’t him denying God’s justice, but actually throwing himself at the mercy of God’s justice.

Elihu believes so strongly in the justice and sovereignty of God that he reckons Job is adding rebellion to his unknown sins, and that the best thing he could do for himself is to humble himself and admit his sins. He is somewhat right, that humbling yourself is usually the best course of action, but Job isn’t concealing anything and is honestly unaware of what sins he is guilty of.

Mark 14:1-11

Our reading from Mark opens up with the Jerusalem authorities conspiring to have Jesus silenced once and for all. They plan to do it before the weeklong observance of the Passover causes the city’s population to swell to unmanageable levels. There had been trouble stirred up at previous pilgrimage festivals in Jerusalem and they were violently put down by Rome, so they were afraid of a similar situation playing out only larger due to what they just witnessed during Jesus’ entry into the city a few days ago.

The action shifts away from Jerusalem to Bethany until we see Jesus being anointed by pouring expensive oil over his head. When the apostles objected, Jesus tells them that what she done was a beautiful thing, and that they need to treasure his presence among them. Matthew and John also recount this event, but with John adding the bonus commentary that Judas was the one who objected and the reason for his objection was because he would steal from their money bag. So then it adds another motive behind Judas’ betrayal when we see Mark telling us he went to the priests and scribes immediately after they “wasted” this oil that he could’ve sold and embezzled some of the proceeds from.

Tomorrow’s Readings:
Numbers 15
Job 35
Psalm 59
Mark 14:12-42

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