Chapter 19:23-29 (ESV) - Oh that my words were written!
Oh that they were inscribed in a book!
Oh that with an iron pen and lead
they were engraved in the rock forever!
For I know that my Redeemer lives,
and at the last he will stand upon the earth.
And after my skin has been thus destroyed,
yet in my flesh I shall see God,
whom I shall see for myself,
and my eyes shall behold, and not another.
My heart faints within me!
If you say, ‘How we will pursue him!’
and, ‘The root of the matter is found in him,’
be afraid of the sword,
for wrath brings the punishment of the sword,
that you may know there is a judgment.
Question to consider: Who is the Redeemer of which Job spoke?
If you've been through my study of Ruth, you should be familiar with the concept of the kinsman redeemer. The same Hebrew word, goel, is used in this passage for Redeemer. After God brought Israel into the promised land, He divided it up among the twelve tribes as an inheritance that would be passed down through the generations. If people fell upon hard times, they could sell their portion of the land with the knowledge that in the year of Jubilee (which occurred every 49 years) the land would be returned to them or their descendants. The kinsman redeemer was a near relative who could buy the land back for their kin.
In the book of Ruth, Naomi experienced her own calamity in which her husband and two sons died so she could not receive the land back which was sold by her husband. Boaz ended up being the near relative who married Naomi’s daughter-in-law, Ruth, and redeemed the inheritance.
Job of course lived hundreds of years before Moses and the Law, but the goel, the Redeemer, was a familiar concept. Today’s passage is a clear statement of the hope of Job. Job believed that there was one who would one day redeem his good name and fortune before God and that long after his death and decay, he would be raised up in the flesh and see God. The one who would redeem him would be the same one Job longed for earlier who was both a son of man and one who could advocate for him before God.
Finally, this redeemer who is both Son of God and Son of Man would one day bring judgment on those who who falsely opposed Job. Even though Job was a Shemite, as a descendant of Esau, he was not from the holy line of Jacob. So it is safe to say that this is a clear example of a Gentile who put his faith and hope in Christ, and it was counted to him as righteousness.
Dear heavenly father, thank You that our Redeemer lives, and that we also have the hope of resurrection through Him. We ask that all who read this will one day, like Job, behold Him and not another. Amen.