If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.
Job makes use of the fact, that human life is so short and so sorrowful, as an argument why God should let him alone, and not chasten him. Life, he seems to say, is short enough without being cut shorter, and sorrowful enough Without being embittered by God's judgments. What Job seems to mean is, that when we once die, we cannot resume our earthly life. There is much that is solemn in this truth. There are many things on earth which we can do a second time; if done imperfectly the first time, a failure is not altogether fatal. But we can only die once. If our short life is wasted, and we die unprepared, we cannot make up for lost opportunities — cannot come back to die again. It is easy to see what Job means by his "appointed time," and also by the "change" for which he waited. But in applying these words to ourselves, we may take a wider range; for there is an appointed time to many different events and periods of human life, as well as to life itself; and corresponding to each of these there is a change, for which the true Christian ought to wait.
1. There are seasons of special temptation and conflict in the Christian life. But temptation endured, is a great furtherance to the spiritual life.
2. It is a law in God's kingdom that we must have trouble. There is sin in our hearts, and where there is sin, there must be chastisement sooner or later. It is well, therefore, to make up our minds that we shall be tried, so that, when it comes, we may not count it a strange thing. Some trials we may be spared, if we live near to God. But some trials we shall still need. How much there is to comfort us under them, if only we are Christ's.
Parallel VersesKJV: If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.