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Thursday, November 3, 2011

Facing trials: Job [2]

I have changed my mind. I decided that we will work our way through this text. There are just too many valuable lessons and nuances to skip over it. So, please sojourn with me a while. 


In his day Job was famous for his riches. He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 1,000 oxen, 500 donkeys and many, many servants. He also had seven sons and three daughters. All this wealth made Job '“he greatest man among all the people of the East" ( Job 1:3)

Job himself described the respect people showed him in Job 29:7-10.

But riches and honor did not give Job a “big head.” Like wealthy Abraham, Job was constantly aware that his blessings came from the Lord.

Though he was not an Israelite, he offered sacrifices to the true God. Perhaps Job learned of the Lord through Abraham or from Moses and the Israelites when they journeyed through wilderness. We don’t know how he knew about God, but he did.

Like any parent, Job worries about the state of his adult children. When they held parties and entertained one another in their homes, Job fretted, "perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts'' (Job 1:5)

Just like all of us who are parents, or grandparents, he was worried that in pursuing their youthful pleasures they would forget about God.

Yet all Job's wealth and faith cannot prevent the tragedies about to crash down upon him. Little does he realize God is preparing him for trials such as few men ever suffer. And little does this godly man suspect that soon his faith will be put to the severest test, almost to the breaking point.

Perhaps his name is forewarning enough! In Hebrew Job can mean "the persecuted one.”

LOSS of RICHES (Job 1:6-2:10)


"One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them" (Job 1:6). With these words opening words we find Satan before the Lord together with the angels.

As the devil begins his discussion with the Lord, Job is completely unaware of it. As a matter of fact, he never learns of this dialogue. Yet it will change Job's life forever.

Satan conceitedly informs the Lord that he has been "roaming through the earth" (Job 1:7). This "roaming" was no walk in the park. The Apostle Peter warns, "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8)

Now God asks, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who f ears God and shuns evil" (Job 1:8). Here the Lord demonstrates that he still has his devout believers like Job, in spite of Satan's work on earth.

This, to me, doesn't sound like a good start for Job. Yes, it would be flattering to thing that I had it all together, but you know, when the rubber hits the road...

Anyway, God is not saying Job is without sin, but simply that he is a devout child of His.

Satan agrees with God, that Job is indeed a true believer. But Satan questions the motivation behind Job's devotion.


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