Here at the end of the book of Job we see the glorious trilogy; still relevant to us today, that of Confession, Repentance and Restoration.
Rom 10:9 – 11: because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”
Acts 3:19 – 20: Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,
Psalm 80:3: Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved!
Job’s confession in v 3 – ‘Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know. We need to ensure that what we speak and understand about God lines up with his written word and is illuminated with revelation by his Spirit and isn’t just here say, tradition or rumour. Sometimes it is ok to say I don’t know rather than hype or exaggerate – Psalm 49:3: My mouth shall speak wisdom; the meditation of my heart shall be understanding. That is why you should never say when bringing a prophetic word “the Lord says”; you are bringing a sense of what the Lord may be saying through you.
Job’s repentance in v 6 – ‘in dust and ashes’ – I believe this is where teaching about doing penance comes from. Repentance means sorry for what you have done which leads to a change in lifestyle. There is nothing we can do (penance) to earn forgiveness except accepting Jesus who died for our sins on the cross as Lord and Saviour. Dust and ashes was an outward sign of repentance (being sorry) and change, our change should be as marked as that in our character, not about doing penance.
Job’s restoration in v 10 – 17 was twice as much as he had before, even his lifespan of 140 years when compared to Psalm 90:10: The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away. Our restoration brings us back into relationship with the Father, just as Adam walked with God in the Garden of Eden.
Gal 3:23 -26: Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
So Confession, Repentance and Restoration; meditate on that in your own life and understand God is in control always.