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Job 17:6



6 He hath made [yatsag] me also a byword [mashowl] of the people [`am]; and aforetime [paniym] I was as a tabret [topheth]. KJV-Interlinear



6 'But He has made me a byword of the people, And I am one at whom men spit. NASB



He, here refers to God. God has allowed Job to become a byword, an object of contempt, a laughingstock, someone to gawk at, despised, the talk of the street, a victim of common gossip.


People will not only raise their eyebrows in arrogance against him, but folks that don't even know him will join in, they will rally with enthusiasm with the mob attitude and spit on him, for no real reason other than he seems to be a popular target.


And thus, Job in his helplessness and innocence, for he has really done nothing wrong, becomes an example of Christ as He will hang on the Cross many centuries later.


With no guilt, with no blame, with no bad reputation, both have been accelerated to a position of extreme contempt, disrespect, scorn, and even hate.


There are two reasons given for this reaction, as it is mentioned in the final words of this verse.


First, Job and Christ have become targets of contempt, because the fundamental nature of humanity, is evil. When truth is lacking, then evil prevails. Man does not have truth inherent within his genetic makeup. Man is fundamentally flawed. This should be obvious from examples of the violence that is taking place in the Middle East, or even within the comical failures in the lives of celebrities.


When truth is rejected, then evil prevails and hate and violence is the ultimate result. This should be more than obvious in the news today, but will be more so in human history during the Tribulation. Once the Holy Spirit withdraws from this world along with all Christians, then there will be no effective restraint against evil. The world will degenerate to total self-destruction within seven very short and fast years.


Thus far, humanity has only survived these many thousands of years because of the grace provision and support of God. Man has not survived because of his adaptable nature, genius or ingenuity. Man is not a product of his environment, but rather the environment is a product of mans attitude.


Second, the contempt posed by man against both Job and Christ, will be like a furnace. Thus is the second meaning of 'topheth.' Both contempt and a burning furnace are symbolic of, and descriptive of, humanitys' true attitude toward truth.


But there is also a third meaning in this verse. Just as mans attitude will burn with hate, due to lack of truth in his soul, so too, that furnace applies to God and His ultimate victory in judgment against all evil.


The furnaces will burn for certain, but it is God who will be shoveling in the fuel consisting of evil humanity.


The evil that mankind generates within his own soul, will become the destructive force of his own existence.

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End Of Lesson

Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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