Misquoted Verses of the Bible (Job 1:21)

This post is part of a series looking at misquoted verses of the Bible. Click here to see others.

Is it true that the Lord gives and the Lord takes away? It’s generally accepted to be that way. We often hear this at funerals or whenever some unexplainable disaster hits us. It’s a way of acknowledging things don’t make sense and throwing all responsibility to God alone. This statement originally came from the lips of a man who loses everything himself. In the book of Job we see the awful experience of a guy who loses his possessions, his health, and his children. He gets to keep his wife, although I have a feeling he would have traded her for one of the things he lost after she tells him to “curse God and die” (2:9).

Job expresses his reaction to his suffering like this:

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” (1:21)

We sing worship songs with this lyric as you can see from the Matt Redman video above (at the 2:16 mark). If you’ve been around in church for the last ten years you’ve likely sang it. The context for Job saying it was worship as well (1:20). But stop a moment and consider what this means. If you lose your job, did God take it away? If a woman is raped, did God take this away from her? For the little child who is murdered, did God take them away? Is God the source of pain in our lives?

What kind of a sadistic view of God does this actually create?


The Way, the Truth, and the Life

Your approach to truth will either push you away from or pull you toward Jesus.

The Theft of War

"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed … The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people."

President Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1953

Future of the Church

I had the great opportunity to do an interview with Steven Siwek for his future of the church series. Be sure to also check out the amazing group of people he has previously interviewed.

A Farewell to Mars

A Farewell to Mars

Recently I finished the book A Farewell to Mars by Brian Zahnd. This book serves as a great connector between two other books I love, Boyd’s Myth of a Christian Nation and York’s A Faith Not Worth Fighting For. Zahnd breaks down our need and dependance upon violence, especially the subconscious hold it has over us. This is a tough sell for Christians in America as I’ve personally experienced in the process of changing my own views on this the last couple of years. However, I believe this conversation to be at the heart of where the Church will move in the future as we learn to distinguish between our allegiance to a nation and our allegiance to God’s Kingdom.


Out of the Corner of My Eye

I think I caught a glimpse of truth out of the corner of my eye

A ghost, a whisper, a suspicion, a subtle and subversive rumor

So dangerous that every army would be commanded to march against it

So beautiful that it would drive those who see it to madness

Or sanity

Does the whole of my kind suffer from mental and moral vertigo?

As Melville said of cabin boy Pip

He saw the foot of God upon the treadle of the loom

And dared to speak it

Henceforth his shipmates called him mad

As Vladimir said when they came to bury Fyodor

The spiritual leader must feel the falsehood prevailing in society

The prophet must struggle against it, never tolerate it, never submit to it

I think I caught a glimpse of truth out of the corner of my eye

Have we been so blinded by the bright lights of advertisers lies

That the only true vision is peripheral vision?

In the age of constant commercialization and overblown hype

Does truth shout with a whisper and stand out with subtlety?

I think I caught a glimpse of truth out of the corner of my eye

It terrified me as I fell in love with it