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Stop the suicide and foolishness of feeding fear and of standing “aghast at nothingness” (S9, 563:6)

Cobbey Crisler insights on Job 3:2, 3 on handling thoughts of suicide

“At the end of chapter 2 of Job the prose ends and the poetry begins in chapter 3. You can tell Hebrew poetry often because of a parallelism it appears and even in translation. Some of you may have been somewhat annoyed or puzzled over the fact that in much of the poetry there is often repetition in the Bible when one line repeats itself. It’s a sure sign that it’s probably poetry because the Hebrews rather than using rhymed sound, they use rhymed thought, with very good reason. The same thing repeated in slightly different words will likely stick in human memory. It’s known as inculcation to a teacher in the school classroom to bring back by repetition points that need to be recalled. By the same token we remember hymns because the music helps us remember the words.

Job 3:3 That’s why we see “let the day perish when I was born, and the night in which it was said there is a man child conceived.” It’s the same point, isn’t it, phrased slightly differently? Where does he go back? He goes right back to what? His thoughts are so dismal at the end of the seven-day period, scratching his boils, no sympathy really from his friends, who are just adding to his problems. His family wiped out. None of his wealth remaining. He goes back “that the day should perish when I was born.”

He starting, very conveniently inappropriately, back where it all claims to start, right back at the beginning. The search for original man it’s probably not too far beneath the surface of all of our thinking. Where are we really? How did we begin? How did we start? Is dust our origin?

We either originated as the image and likeness of God in Genesis 1:26 or as in Genesis 2:7 and 22 and Genesis 3:17 and 20 we came out of dust.

Job is going to go in depth into that second possibility. Notice what his frame of thought is like. Go through chapter 3 of Job and list many of the words and you can describe his mental attitude.

(They include perish…darkness…shadow of death…cloud…blackness…solitary…no joyful noise…mourning…dark…sorrow…Why didn’t I die…

What we see here are really arguments on behalf of suicide as the last way out. Unless we discount this as a thought. Remember that human nature looks pretty much like whenever we run into it. Because the fountain rises no higher than its source unless human nature responses to and yields to a higher source, namely divinity, we find generally the same things occurring in it. Suicide then it is in the thought of human nature. Therefore, it is in our thoughts and it comes in various guises. Statistics are beginning to show that more than ever before. Never have young people have such high suicide rates as just in recent years. Never have women over 65 had statistics showing the proportion of suicides has risen so dramatically. Why? The arguments for suicide are all put right out there. Why did it all have to begin? You start out as a biological egg and you end up scrambled.”

“The Case of Job,” by B. Cobbey Crisler**

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