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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

He Said That? Part 4

The following statements were recently made by Star Scott during a teaching he calls The God of This World.  Mr Scott has a rebuke for all who dare to ask God the question "why?".

"Job loses everything he has. Can you imagine in one day all your kids were gone? Tragic death and they are all gone. Sadly, your wife is still there. There is no greater burden in life than an unregernerated [sic] wife. Could God have stopped Satan from killing Job's kids? Absolutely! Why,Why, Why, Why? You are not allowed to ask why. All your kids die, you are not allowed to ask why.'s what you are able to do. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord. Hallelujah, amen? If you are not there, you are worldly. If you are not there, you are being affected and your life is being directed by Satan's tragedies and attacks and God is not being glorified because it's all about you. 'Poor me. Look how I have been abused. I have my rights, this isn't fair....'".

When I heard this, I felt deep sadness and anger on behalf of mothers and fathers who have gone through the unspeakable grief of losing a child.  I imagine it is a testing of one's faith and trust in God like none other.

But Star Scott has a message for you: "You are not allowed to ask why". If you ask why, you are worldly. If you question God, you are being led by Satan. If you ask why, you are not glorifying God. If you ask why, you are a whiny crybaby saying "poor me". If you cry out to God with questions, you are accusing God of abuse.

Mr Scott focuses on Job's wife and the statement she makes to Job, "curse God and die". His conclusion is that Job's wife is the worst possible burden for Job to have to endure (I guess even worse than losing all his children, wealth, etc.) and because of her momentary outburst, she is lost for all eternity.

Yes, Job's wife speaks to her husband "Curse God and die!" But Job's response to his wife is not as condemning as Star Scott's is. "...[Job] said to her, "You speak like one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?" Note that Job says ...."like one of the foolish women"...... He does not call her a foolish woman, only that she is speaking like one. He then goes on to comfort her with his own hard-won wisdom.... "Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?" And yet even after Job says this, he struggles with what the will of God has brought into his life.

(If you are interested enough to pursue this subject, it is enlightening to do a study on the word barak, translated in Job to mean curse. The Hebrew verb barak occurs just over 325 times in the Old Testament, and is often translated to mean bless, or to kneel down. Perhaps Job's wife was actually saying 'you have kept your integrity, now kneel down, bless God, and die. Indeed, some scholars believe this is the more accurate translation.)

And that is all we know of Job's wife. There is no mention of Job putting his wife out, or of God condemning her to hell, or of her death. There is also no mention of Job marrying another woman. At the close of the book of Job, we find that the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before. We can assume (and many scholars do) that Job's wife bore him his children and shared in his blessings.

Star Scott states that  Job "... kept his integrity, didn’t he. He makes great statements like the Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the lord." 

But Job also spoke the following:

"Why then did you bring me out of the womb? I wish I had died before any eye saw me." Job 10:18

"Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like a hireling who looks for his wages, so I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me." Job 7:2.3

"I would speak to the Almighty, and I desire to argue my case with God." Job 13:3

“What strength do I have, that I should hope?” (Job 6:11 NKJV)

Does it please you [God] to oppress me, to spurn the work of your hands,
while you smile on the schemes of the wicked?” Job 10:3

“He [God] throws me into the mud, and I am reduced to dust and ashes. I cry out to you, O God, but you do not answer; I stand up, but you merely look at me.” Job 30:19

I loathe my very life; therefore I will give free rein to my complaint and speak out in the bitterness of my soul. Job 10:1

“As surely as God lives, who has denied me justice,
the Almighty, who has made me taste bitterness of soul…” Job 27:2

“…then know that God has wronged me and drawn his net around me. Though I cry, ‘I’ve been wronged!’ I get no response; though I call for help, there is no justice.”  Job 19:6,7

And others have spoken boldly to God, asking why? when? how long? Even accusing God of forsaking them.

From the Book of Psalms: 

“Why, O LORD, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?” (10:1)

“Why have you forgotten me?” (42:9b)

“Why do you forget our affliction and oppression?” (44:24b)

LORD, how long shall the wicked, how long shall the wicked triumph? (94:3)

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? why are you so far from saving me? (22:1)

From Jeremiah  Why was I born? Was it only to have trouble and sorrow, to end my life in disgrace? (20:18)

From Habakkuk  O Lord, how long shall I cry for help and you will not hear? Or cry to you Violence! and you will not save? (1:2)

And finally from Mark   Jesus said "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" 15:34b

And yet according to Star Scott, the woman who loses her child/children may not ask God why. The worst tragedy a mother can endure and Mr Scott calls her worldly if she asks God why.

But God in His infinite love, grace and mercy speaks to us:

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.  James 1:5

For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.…Matthew 7:8

I sought the LORD, and He answered me, And delivered me from all my fears.  Psalm 34:4  

Sadly, Mr Scott, in his attempt to silence women, has twisted the scripture to say far more than it does. Though he often says "ladies, I'm on your side...", he more often speaks against them. (May I remind you of the time he taught on women's role in the home - he asked Greer what she thought the women were hearing. Her response? That women are evil. Even his own wife understood Scott's opinion of women.) 

Because God is largely silent concerning Job's wife, why is Star Scott building a principle from the one emotional response of a grieving mother? Not only is there no scriptural basis for this new "principle", Mr Scott is doing exactly what scripture warns against:

Do not add to His words or He will reprove you, and you will be proved a liar. Proverbs 30:6

Why does Mr Scott teach his congregation that God is not big enough to handle their questions and doubts? Doesn't God already know our hearts? In a loving, honest relationship, we are free to come to God as our Father, knowing He will never turn us away. He is always willing to hear and comfort us in our times of grief and doubt. 

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