The story of Job is widely known. In Chap 2, we see the scene in heaven with the dialog between God and Satan and God says “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the Earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity…”
Much deeper into the account of Job’s tragic affliction and misguided friends’ counsel – Job himself states in 27:6 “I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go; my heart does not reproach me for any of my days.”
What can we glean here?
(1) Job’s will is aligned with God’s will – his goal is avoiding sin and pursuing righteousness, even in tragic circumstances and in the face of conflicting advice his focus is pleasing God. (2 Cor 5:9) Can we say we have this righteous determination?
(2) Note that this verse implies there is “reproach” in our heart when we sin – aka “guilty feelings”. The old adage here is in effect – do right and feel right. (Remember Cain? Gen 4:6). Job knows that all sin brings pain – do we forget it sometimes and selfishly pursue it anyway? I do.
It’s worth noting that we are not pursuing these things to earn favor with God – for we have nothing to offer him except our sin. He is the one who initiated reconciliation through his son Jesus – his life, death, and resurrection – and only in him do we find righteousness. We pursue righteousness because that is our identity – that is who we are now – because of the new birth we have in Jesus. As Job himself said in 9:3 “how can a man be right before God?” Answer: only by faith in Jesus.