You have probably had one of those days. Likely more than once. Instead of thinking about the possibilities of life, you begin contemplating the potential relief of death. You wonder what it will take to turn things around and ease the pain you feel from the burdens of life. You may even have come under attack and have been viciously maligned through lies and character assassination, becoming “a byword of the people…in whose face men spit” (Job 17:6) as happened to Job. Calling this unpleasant is such an understatement that it might feel offensive. Yet, this reflects the demoralizing plight the righteous must face on a regular basis in today’s society, regularly treated as worthless, out of step, and unintelligent— simply for standing for God’s truth.
The ungodly undermine truth with their relentless barrage of attacks asserting the supremacy of tolerance while being intolerant of righteousness. Indeed, some who fear God fall prey to these attacks due to their own misunderstanding of God’s Word, making matters even worse. Job surely felt this as he experienced the ostracization of society that extended even to his closest friends—all while being told he was the one in the wrong. If you have ever wondered what happened to transform society—in America and in the church—into a meaningless goop of weak-willed people who would rather pander to Satan than stand with Almighty God, then perhaps you can also identify with Job at how his life had been turned upside down and argue, “Upright men are astonished at this, And the innocent stirs himself up against the hypocrite” (Job 17:8). However, as Job himself felt all the ravages of just how unfair life can be, the resolution of his character is the model for all who seek to please God: “Yet the righteous will hold to his way, And he who has clean hands will be stronger and stronger” (Job 17:9). Life upon this earth is not fair. It is filled with tragedy and temptation, injustice and outrage. Nevertheless, in the midst of this unfairness, there can be unyielding faith in the justice of Jehovah.
Do not expect justice to come from the hands of the ungodly. We have seen too many failures of justice in the courts to associate the judiciary with justice without a very large asterisk. Do not expect morality and uprightness from a world given over to sin. Instead, appreciate those moments when you see its remaining traces active among a people who largely have forgotten the origin of goodness. Do not expect others to judge your commitment to the gospel standard of right and wrong fairly. Most do not understand or appreciate it for the divine revelation it is. But Christian, do not despair. Life is not fair, but God always is. And in the end, that is all that matters.