Job 5:15-17 (NIV)
He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth;
he saves them from the clutches of the powerful.
So the poor have hope,
and injustice shuts its mouth.
Blessed is the man whom God corrects;
so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.
As far as I can tell, there are at least fourteen Hebrew words that are translated “hope” in the Old Testament. Job’s friend Elipaz uses tikvah in his discourse concerning Job. Unaware of the throw down of Chapter 2 between God and Satan, he mistakenly assumes that Job is being disciplined by God for some unknown offense.
We know more of the back story than Elipaz and can rest assured that while his ideas about God here are accurate, the charge against Job is misplaced. Paul affirms the content of the chapter by quoting verse 13 in 1 Corinthians 3:19. The chapter teaches us to expect trouble as part of the human experience (v 7) and that the only place to seek relief is bringing our case to God who meets every need on earth and deals justly with all people.
No man, even the poor, are without hope. Almighty God rescues them and silences the mouth of injustice that would devour them. I love that the context here is in God’s correction towards us. He loves human kind enough to chasten us. He does not leave us the same. It is often in these difficult periods that tikvah-hope comes.
The root word of tikvah is translated “cord”, one that is stretched and does not break. This is the HOPE of discipline. That we grow, improve and become stronger by God’s loving hand.
We are pursuing the call of God for our community. I admonish you to pursue hope for yourselves and households. May we know tikvah-hope in all its meaning and applications as we offer the hope of the Gospel to those who long for the rescue of God. Indeed, blessed is the person whom God corrects for we have a Hope that endures.