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Jesus Christ in the Book of Job, and Job as a Type of Christ in Job 42

Jesus Christ in the Book of Job, and Job as a Type of Christ in Job 42

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We repeatedly see Jesus Christ in the book of Job. There are prophecies about Christ in the book of Job, and we see Job as a type of Christ. Read this chapter from Enduring Trials God’s Way to grasp the book of job pointing to Jesus.

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The text in this post is from Enduring Trials God’s Way: A Biblical Recipe for Finding Joy in Suffering, and the audio is from the accompanying audiobook. I am praying God uses the book and audiobook to strengthen your faith and exalt Christ!

Job longed for Someone during his trials, and his words provide some of the greatest revelation of the Messiah in the Old Testament. Although Job did not have the revelation of Jesus that we have, he still looked forward to Him in faith. Centuries later, Jesus would reveal Himself to be the reality and substance of Job’s words.

Jesus Christ in the Book of Job as Mediator

Job longed for a Person to stand between him and God:

Job asked: “Truly I know it is so, but how can a man be righteous before God?”

Job 9:1-2

This is the most important question people can ask, because it determines where we spend eternity. Job answered his question and explained why “a man [cannot] be righteous before God”:

If one wished to contend with Him, he could not answer Him one time out of a thousand. God is wise in heart and mighty in strength. Who has hardened himself against Him and prospered?

Job 9:3-4

Nobody can stand before God and respond to His questions. Job learned this the hard way when he was finally given his audience.

At the end of the chapter, Job explained the problem and necessary solution:

For He is not a man, as I am, that I may answer Him, and that we should go to court together. Nor is there any mediator between us, who may lay his hand on us both.

Job 9:32-33

He needed a Mediator to stand between God and him. First Timothy 2:5 says, “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus.” The words “lay his hand on us both” refer to bringing people together, which is how it is translated in some Bibles. Job was looking for Someone to reconcile him to God, and 2 Corinthians 5:18 says, “God has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ.”

Let Him (the Mediator) take His (God’s) rod away from me, And do not let dread of Him terrify me.

Job 9:34

A rod administers punishment, and Job wanted the Mediator to take away the judgment he deserved. But if God took it from him, He would have to administer the punishment to Someone else. Sins can’t go unpunished or God wouldn’t be just. Job expected his Mediator to receive his punishment. Isaiah 53:5 says Jesus “was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities.”

Then I would speak and not fear Him, but it is not so with me.

Job 9:35

Job could approach God confidently if the Mediator did what he described, but he knew that had not been done for him. Jesus has done this for us though: “We have boldness and access [to God] with confidence through faith in [Jesus]” (Ephesians 3:12).

After the Mediator took God’s rod away from Job, he would no longer “fear God.” But the words “it is not so with me” mean he knew it wasn’t within his power to accomplish this.

Job longed for the Mediator during his trials, and He is available to us when we suffer. Jesus allows us to “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).

Job Looked Forward to His Mediator by Faith, Because Even He Wasn’t Righteous Enough

Job couldn’t see his Mediator. He didn’t know who He was, but he could look forward to Him in faith. This is Old Testament salvation, and it’s just like New Testament salvation: justification by faith. Consider the ways Job is described: “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil” (Job 1:1; see also Job 1:8 and 2:3).

As far as earthly righteousness goes, nobody could do better than Job. But God says, “There is none who does good, no, not one” (Psalm 14:2-3, 53:2-3, quoted in Romans 3:10; see also Ecclesiastes 7:20, 1 Kings 8:46, 2 Chronicles 6:36, and Psalm 143:2). Job was arguably the greatest man in the Old Testament, but he wasn’t righteous enough in God’s eyes.

What Can We Learn from Job?

Job teaches there’s no righteousness man can attain that’s “good enough.” The religious leaders were the picture of self-imposed righteousness, but Jesus said:

Unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven

Matthew 5:20

If Job and the religious leaders couldn’t attain a righteousness that’s acceptable to God, nobody can. Our hope comes from the righteousness that’s freely available by grace through faith in our Mediator:

The righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe.

Romans 3:21-22

Jesus Christ in the Book of Job as Advocate

He longed for an Advocate to plead his case:

“Surely even now my witness is in heaven, and my evidence is on high.”

Job 16:19

A witness (or advocate) speaks on behalf of someone else, and that is what Job wanted. He knew there was Someone to testify on his behalf, and he even knew this Person was “in heaven…on high.”

“My friends scorn me; my eyes pour out tears to God. Oh, that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleads for his neighbor!”

Job 16:20–21

Job lost everything. Even his “friends” became his accusers. It would not be too much to say that he was the loneliest man in the world. In the face of so much desertion and criticism, he wanted someone on his side. He knew there was an Advocate to defend him the way “a man pleads for his neighbor.” When Job knew he did not have anyone else, he knew he had this Person.

Even if we feel as though we have lost everything, we “have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1). When we suffer, He “is even at the right hand of God, [making] intercession for us” (Romans 8:34). If we feel as though we do not have anyone or anything else, we still have Jesus.

Jesus Christ in the Book of Job as Redeemer

He longed for Someone to deliver him out of his suffering:

For I know that my Redeemer lives, and He shall stand at last on the earth. And after my skin is destroyed, this I know, that in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!

Job 19:25–27

Job knew his Redeemer was alive and He would stand on the earth at the end of time. Satan “struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head” (Job 2:7). Job said, “My flesh is caked with worms and dust, my skin is cracked and breaks out afresh” (Job 7:5). His flesh was in terrible shape, but he knew after it was “destroyed,” he would “see God in [his] flesh.” How could Job see God in his flesh if his flesh was destroyed? He expected to receive a new body:

Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible (earthly bodies) must put on incorruption (glorified bodies), and this mortal (earthly bodies) must put on immortality (glorified bodies).

1 Corinthians 15:51-53

Job said he would see his Redeemer with “[his own] eyes,” and he knew this meant “[seeing] God” Himself. Jesus, the Redeemer, is God: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). Following the Incarnation, Jesus said, “I and My Father are one” (John 10:30). Our flesh will be destroyed, but we too will receive new bodies and see God for ourselves.

Despite Job’s suffering, these thoughts were still enough to cause “[his] heart [to] yearn within [him].” He was overwhelmed as he looked forward in faith to being redeemed. Our joy should be even greater considering we have been redeemed:

Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.

1 Peter 1:18-19

Even during the worst trials, the redemptive work of Christ should cause our “hearts to yearn within [us]” for Him.

Job as a Type of Christ in Five Ways

After Job suffered, he served as one of the clearest shadows and types of Christ the Old Testament. He longed for his Mediator, Advocate, and Redeemer throughout his trials, and then he became a picture of the Person, Jesus Christ, to his friends in five ways.

First, Job’s Sacrifice and Intercession Turned Away God’s Wrath

Job 42:7–8 records:

And so it was, after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is aroused against you and your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has. Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and My servant Job shall pray for you. For I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.”

Job 42:7-8

God said His “wrath was aroused against his friends.” How could God’s wrath be turned away? This was hundreds of years before the Mosaic law instituted the sacrificial system, but even then it was clear an offering needed to be made for sin. Seven is the number of completion, which means his offering pictured a perfect sacrifice on his friends’ behalf.

God did not treat Job’s friends “according to [their] folly,” which is to say they did not receive the punishment they deserved. They avoided God’s judgment because he interceded for them. Similarly, God’s wrath is against us, but Jesus offered a perfect sacrifice on our behalf. We do not receive the punishment our sins deserve. We avoid judgment, because of Jesus’ intercession for us.

Second, God Accepted Job in Place of His Friends

So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did as the Lord commanded them; for the Lord had accepted Job.

Job 42:9

His friends did not accept him, but in verse eight God said, “I will accept him,” and now it says God “accepted Job.” Those closest to him rejected him like those closest to Jesus rejected him, but God accepted him on their behalf like God accepts Jesus on our behalf.

Third, Job Was Rejected and Then Exalted

Then all his brothers, all his sisters, and all those who had been his acquaintances before, came to him and ate food with him in his house; and they consoled him and comforted him for all the adversity that the Lord had brought upon him. Each one gave him a piece of silver and each a ring of gold.

Job 42:11

He was rejected by his family but then accepted by them. Similarly, Jesus was first rejected by his family and then accepted by them. He experienced suffering and humiliation, but then blessing and exaltation. Jesus experienced suffering and humiliation, but He will experience blessing and exaltation:

[Jesus] made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:7-11

Job’s friends honored him because of what he did for them. How much more honor should we give Christ, because of the greater work He did for us as our Mediator, Advocate, and Redeemer?

Fourth, Job Was an Innocent, Righteous Sufferer

The first two chapters of the Book of Job contain what could be the greatest description of an individual in all of Scripture, second only to Christ Himself:

  • Job 1:1 says, “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil.
  • Job 1:8 God described Job to Satan: “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?”
  • Job 2:3 God described Job again, after Satan destroyed his animals, servants, and children. He repeated what He previously said and added, “Still he holds fast to his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to destroy him without cause.”

Job’s description contributes to the main struggle people have with this book. If Job looked like a terrible sinner who “had it coming,” there would be no dilemma. Instead, we ask: “How could God let an innocent, righteous man experience such terrible suffering?”

Despite Job’s character, he was still a sinner: “There is none righteous; no, not one” (Romans 3:10). Job revealed the truth of this verse. At times he accused God and revealed self-righteousness.

There has only been one perfectly righteous, innocent Sufferer, and that is Jesus. The Gospels go to great lengths throughout His trials to reveal this:

  • Matthew 27:19—Pilate’s wife said, “Have nothing to do with that just Man.”
  • Matthew 27:24—Pilate said, “I am innocent of the blood of this just Person.”
  • Luke 23:41—One of the criminals on the cross next to Jesus said, “This Man has done nothing wrong.”
  • Luke 23:47—The centurion said, “Certainly this was a righteous Man!”

Fifth, Job Suffered and Then Saved His Friends

Job looked forward to the Man who suffered and saved His friends in the true and greater sense. He suffered. But Jesus suffered for the sins of others. Job offered a sacrifice for his friends. But Jesus offered the one sacrifice that provided eternal life:

This Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God.

Hebrews 10:12

Job saved his friends physically and temporarily. But Jesus saves His friends spiritually and eternally.

Discussion Questions

  1. During trials, how can you be encouraged thinking about the Mediator, Advocate, and Redeemer you have in Jesus?
  2. What other roles does the Lord fill that can encourage you during trials? For examples, look at Psalm 18:2, 27:1, and 144:1–2?
  3. How can longing for Jesus give you peace during trials?
  4. Do you see any other ways Job served as a type of Christ? If so, list them.
  5. Can you think of other ways Job served as a type of Christ?
  6. In what ways is Jesus the true and greater Intercessor, and the only innocent, righteous Sufferer?
  7. Can you think of other examples in Scripture of individuals who served as a type of Christ during their suffering?

24 Responses

  1. I don’t know if the writer of this article is still reading these comments all these years later, but if so, my name is Jesse and I just wanted to say I found this verse in Job this year by accident. I was shocked that God said to Job, “You spoke well of me” when most of us would think the friends in defense of God spoke well of Him. Putting these two together, and hearing Job beg for a Mediator, I cried. Job was asking for Jesus and God planned all along to give us Jesus. But the fact that this little nugget of gold was in Job makes me feel like even after being saved 12 years ago at 28 I understand God so much more now than I did before just because of these verses in Job! I believe God’s character is SO MUCH more vast and SO MUCH deeper than we understand. What we understand as “good,” what we understand as “evil,” and all of it in between opens up God to how much GREATER he is than our understanding. In fact I don’t think we know much at all about his true holiness! But again, HOW AMAZING that Job knew we needed a Mediator! And how much more that GOD GAVE US ONE!

    1. Jesse,
      Yes, I still read all the comments and try to respond to them, but not always as quickly as I probably should.

      When God said Job spoke well of Him, He is not referring to what Job said in chapters 3 through 31. He’s referring to Job’s two responses in chapters 40 and 42 after God questioned Him. These were the times Job spoke of God what is right, but Job’s friends never said those things. Perhaps you already knew this, but I wanted to make sure.

      Yes, you are definitely correct that Job was longing for Christ. It is beautiful to me to see how well our Savior is revealed in the oldest book of the Bible. It seems like this truth has blessed you as well. I truly came to love Christ as I saw Him through types and shadows in the Old Testament.

  2. God always had a purpose for anything that happens. Before we give up, we have to draw on the knowledge we have of God. Job knew that his Redeemer lived. He knew that if worse comes to worst He would see God with a brand new body. It’s amazing how he knew this in the Old Testament. Some of the greatest revelations or mysteries are revealed in our deepest sufferings. I believe Lazarus’ resurrection was a learning/revelatory experience. Of course, it started out as a tragic experience.

    1. Hello Michael,
      Well said. One of the many blessings of the Christian life is knowing – like you said – that nothing happens arbitrarily or randomly. God uses all of it in our lives, and if we’re believers, He’s using it for our good (Romans 8:28).

      I’m not sure how much Job knew. Instead, I believe he was forced to walk by faith, just like us. He wasn’t privy to the first and second chapters of his own book; however, yes, like you said, his deepest suffering provided some of the greatest revelations of the Messiah. The same can transpire in our lives when, during our deepest sufferings, the Lord is closest to us.

  3. Thanks Scott,
    It is very encouraging knowing it’s not up to me, and I’m reminded every day, hour, minute that I fail to hit the mark…I miss the whole target!!

  4. Yes, I see this. I believe their motivations were wrong. They kept the letter of the Law for their own selfish gain. This tells me there is a right way to keep it. That is what the entire life of Yeshua was about. It was about demonstrating how to keep the Torah, how to keep it from the heart. Yeshua said; “Unless your righteousness… (whose righteousness?) EXCEEDS (goes beyond)…

    Deuteronomy 8:2 “And you shall remember that יהוה your Elohim led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you, prove you, to KNOW WHAT IS IN YOUR HEART, whether you guard His commands or not.

    Deuteronomy 10:12 “And now, Yisra’ĕl, what is יהוה your Elohim asking of you, but to fear יהוה your Elohim, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, and to serve יהוה your Elohim with all your HEART and with all your being,

  5. “Unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:20).

    You quoted the above verse in your teaching. My question for you would be; What do you think Yeshua meant by this?

    1. There’s a double meaning to the verse:
      1. First, Jesus said it because the religious leaders – at least in a spiritual sense – were not righteous individuals. They were prideful and their hearts were ugly.
      2. Second, the religious leaders were the picture of self-imposed righteousness. In most people’s eyes they achieved the highest level of self-imposed righteousness. In other words, when Jesus said, “You have to be more righteous than them” people would think, “Uh, that’s not possible. There’s no way I could be righteous enough for heaven.”

  6. Yes, I do my best to follow all of His commands as I come to understand them. Remember that not all 613 commands are applicable. In other words, some commands are only for woman, some only for men, some only for Levites etc. etc.

    As to the tassels (TzitZit), I absolutely do. I wear them according to the commandments given about them and to the best of my ability. Yeshua wore them and He said “Do as I do”.

    I will have to admit, it was hard at first, especially in the business/public arena. I was fearful of what my clients would say, but I did not let that stop me. The tzitzit are to remind me of all His commandments, and just like choosing to not eat pork and to keep the Sabbath instead of Sunday, they are not difficult or burdensome.

    1. Okay Jeff, well I have to say that while I don’t feel bound to keep those commands (as we’ve discussed) I admire your consistency.

      You have a consistency that I haven’t seen with others who have tried to convince me we’re bound to keep the Mosaic Law, but then they don’t keep portions.

  7. Yes, all of my trust is in the finished work of Yeshua Messiah.

    Many would say that because I strive to follow Torah that I am actually trusting in my own righteousness. I hear this over and over again. It’s like people seem to think they can look into my heart and judge my motivations or something. I keep His Torah because I love Him and trust in Him. I do not keep them to earn anything.

    It is my faith and trust in what the Son provided for me that gives me the freedom to return His Torah. This is not obedience to Torah to gain righteousness, this is obedience out of love for what He did for me. There is absolutely no way you could understand this unless you are willing to submit to all of His Word, His Instructions and Commandments. Its like the moment you submit, then the true light begins to shine so brightly. This light is a light that exposes all your weaknesses, your shortcomings, your faults, all of your sins. After walking in Christianity for 30 years and then leaving the Christian church follow Torah, I have never had the light shine so brightly on myself and it has been such a blessing. Just ask my wife. 🙂

    1. Jeff,
      If you don’t mind me asking, when you say you follow the Law, does this mean you follow all 613 commands? I don’t mean this sarcastically, but does this mean you wear tassels on your clothes?

  8. That was truly a Holy Spirit led & guided inspired analysis of Job being a type and shadow of Christ; as was your message on Joseph being a type and shadow of Christ; and, as was your sermon on Jonah with the same highlighting of him being that , also… It is quite apparent that the Spirit of God has gifted you with deep insight into this very specific area of study of the Scriptures, and it is a true blessing for those who “have an ear to hear” the profound spiritual lessons, implications, & applications learned for their application in our every day Christian living… (Moses and Isaac being types & shadows of Christ, also) All of those, and many more such examples like those, all throughout the Scriptures clearly shows us how God is truly such an Amazing, Awesome, Wonderful, Marvelous, Loving, Detailed, Precise, Wise, Thoughtful, Intelligent Designer Creator of all of His Personally Guided Inspiration of the Spiritual content of the whole Counsel of God from Genesis right through to Revelation! If one has the spiritual “eyes to see” it has His Fingerprints &/or His Handy-work &/or His Signature all over it… Thank you, again!

  9. As an type of Christ, Job was disciplined and scourged ,Heb 12:4-11 is the reflection of Jesus’ suffering. And just as job was afflicted by Satan without cause, so was Jesus of whom Satan through his children were decreed from the beginning to bruise his heel.gen 3:15

    We are disciplined out of love by Father recieved as legitimate children (Rom 3:25) because of what Jesus would go through as Righteous for our sins instead of us without being divinely accursed(1 cor 12:3kjv) at the appointed time.

  10. Hey Scott, this was great and I went through it with the family. Thanks for putting out content like this. (-:

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