Feb 5, 2020
Yesterday we heard of the plague against the livestock, the plague of boils, and the plague of hail. We are not told how much time there was in between each plague. It seems there was enough time for many Egyptians to buy more livestock before they were again decimated by the hail. Then we heard about the plague of locusts followed by the plague of darkness.
I hope you noticed Who is doing the hardening of hearts and causing the stubbornness. Paul talks about that in Romans 9.
Job chapter 36 is Elihu's 5th chapter preaching to Job.
In the 4th chapter of his letter, James preached against the way the world had infiltrated the church— and we could say, still infiltrates the church. He gave an important clue about why God doesn't answer our prayers. And he taught that we need to purify our hearts from pride and having divided loyalty between God and the world. He gave a big clue on how to be rid of Satan's influence. Finally, James taught us how prideful it is to judge others, and warned about prideful planning.
Note that in verses 1-6 of today’s reading, James is using the rhetorical device called ‘apostrophe’— where he harshly rebukes rich people who are NOT actually in his audience. He is doing this to give comfort to his actual audience, which includes many who are poor. It is almost certainly the case that any rich people who were actually part of James’ audience had not done the crimes James mentions.