Today’s Scripture: Job 1-4
In our chronological reading of God’s Word, we briefly move from the story of Genesis to the story of Job. Most scholars think that Job lived in the days that preceded Abraham. For this reason, we will look at his life and study his book over the next several days. Job, the main character of the book that bears his name, lost everything that he had through no fault of his own. No less than two times are we told that he was a man of integrity. He was a faithful worshiper of God who lived a blameless life and stayed away from evil. It should be noted that the Lord took note of his life! In fact, no life that is lived for God goes unnoticed by him. At the same time, such a life is a target of the enemy of all souls. Satan took aim at Job because his life was a real threat to the devil’s empire of darkness. Job was a man who pointed others to the one true God. The Bible tells us that there came a time when Satan appeared before God and a conversation about Job ensued. Satan is the accuser, and as such, he accused Job by slandering his integrity. He essentially made the claim that Job served God for gain. In other words, the devil implied that Job was a worshiper because of all that God had blessed him with—family, fortune, and fame. Satan says, “If You reach out and take away everything that he has, he will curse You to Your face!” God permits Satan to stretch out his hand against God with the stipulation that he not harm Job physically. So, the devil goes out and launches his attack against Job. All in the same day, Job loses his immense wealth, his servants, and his children. Disaster struck Job’s life with full force.
It is helpful for us to remember that as the readers, we are privileged with some inside information that Job did not have. Job was not aware of the conversation that had taken place between Satan and God. Job was not aware that the enemy had declared an all-out war on Job’s righteous life. Job was not aware that God was allowing his faith and integrity to be put to the test of all tests. As Job struggled to make sense of all that had transpired in his life, it would become clear to him that he was not meant to know the reasons why. From Job’s life, we learn the valuable lesson that God’s people live by promises and not by explanations. We live the same way that Job lived—only one day at a time. Like him, we are not given complete answers as to why God allows certain things to happen the way that they do. When disaster strikes, we must simply trust Him.
I pray that Job’s response to disaster would be my response. The Bible says, “Job stood up and tore his robe in grief. He fell to the ground in worship.” He glorified God in the day of his disaster. What was his attitude? He simply said, “The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away. Praise the name of the Lord!” The book of Job teaches us that we must never give up on God because we have bad experiences in life. Faith in Jesus doesn’t mean we will have lives that are free from struggle. In fact, we may struggle more. There was a cross for Jesus, and there will always be a cross for the Christ-follower. Adversity destroys artificial faith, but it deepens authentic faith. The sufferings of this life will pale in comparison to the future glory that we will one day experience. It will all be worth it, Christ-follower! If you are facing an uphill climb, let me encourage you to hold fast and keep the faith. Jesus is holding on to you.
“Father, I pray that the difficulties we face in this life will only bring us into closer relationship with You. No matter what we face, as Your children we are thankful that we never face it alone. Bless and encourage those who are presently suffering. Amen.”
“God’s people live by promises and not by explanations.” That is a good reminder.