Job's Suffering because he is God's Servant

Job establishes the foundation of our understanding of God and the dimensions of the spiritual world. Especially in view of the statement, which declared, “God is not the Author of disaster and He does NOT allow it”, here are some important points out of the book of Job to challenge you, to reconsider your doctrine.

Job is righteous

There are four qualities, which are attached to Job: he is blameless, he is upright, he fears God and shuns evil. These four characteristics of his life are repeated several times in the book.

Job has not done anything wrong. He has no open door, as so many people claim as the reason for the disaster in his life. There was nothing wrong with Job, on the contrary, God has found a righteous man and was proud to have a partner on the earth.

Satan wants to nullify Job’s identity

God’s partner cannot be ignored. He cannot be put in a corner but must be displayed to the world, but also to Satan. According to the first chapter of Job, Satan had walked across the earth and had tried to penetrate Job’s domain.

In the beginning of Job, we see that God has a meeting with His eternal hosts. Satan comes, uninvited, in the midst of this heavenly congregation. In Psalm 82 we also read about the congregation of the mighty, where God comes to judge among the gods. Satan appears and surely God notices his presence. He does not challenge him, he does not invite him to attack Job, no, He simply testifies of the fact that surely Job must have caught his attention. At last there was one righteous man on the earth.

Satan is the god of this age

When Satan sinned, he was thrown out of heaven, out of the presence of God and landed in the lower heavenly atmospheres and began to operate on the earth. When God put His man, Adam, on the earth, God’s intention was to bring Satan low and to do it through man. As we all know, Adam submitted to Satan instead of following God’s instructions. From that moment on, Satan became even more the ruler of this world.

Job does not know what is happening above his head and has a limited understanding of God. So when Satan entices God to strip Job off his possessions, Job is unaware of the spiritual dimensions. Now we must clearly establish that God did not do this because James 1: 13 says, “God cannot be tempted by evil”. Nobody should ever say that! God is only light and neither evil nor disaster belong to Him.

Satan is not God’s partner, nor does he function on an equal level. God stands above Satan; He is the Creator and still very much in control, because He clearly puts the parameters of Satan’s onslaught. Job’s goods are on the earth; these are on Satan’s territory and power, but Job’s life is God’s!

God declares a fact

God does not give permission and is not a Father, who does not care and who will just look in the other direction to allow Satan to do whatever pleases him. God is good; there is no darkness in Him and He does not cooperate with the enemy against man. God says all he has, in your power”. In Hebrew, there is no verb, which means that the sentence is neutral and hence it is a declaration of a fact. Satan is the god of this world and therefore everything that is on the earth is his.

When Job declared that God gave and took back, he declared this in his limited understanding of God. He did not know God but was on his way to know Him and receive insight in the spirit realm.

A second onslaught

Again in Job 2 the same scene is repeated, where Satan appears once again in the congregation of the mighty. Job did not sin in the first instance and remained blameless, upright, fearing God and shunning evil. Satan had attacked Job without a cause. Again God testifies about Job’s integrity and Satan goes a step further. Again God does not permit but establishes a fact “behold, he, in your hand”. Yet God clearly puts the boundaries to Satan’s evil ways and forbids Satan to touch Job’s life. Again after Satan left God and made Job sick, Job did not sin but stayed integer before God.

Friends come to accuse and convict Job of faults

Job’s friends come and are silent for seven days. They cannot speak because of the disaster they find when they visit him. Then his friends begin to show him that surely there must be sin. Every time in the conversations, Job’s image of God grows and he begins to understand that something is going on, which is beyond his perception. In Job 31: 37, Job declares, “I would declare to Him the number of my steps, like a prince I would approach Him”. The translators have put Him with a capital letter but the context shows that it should be him with a small “h”. He is talking about the opponent. See verse 35 “Oh, that I had one to hear me! Here is my mark. Oh, that the Almighty would answer me, That my Prosecutor had written a book! My prosecutor is not God, but Job asks God a question on the statement, which his opponent has written – literally verse 35 says O, that someone would hear me! Here is my mark – let the Almighty answer me – also the part, which my opponent wrote. Behold I would take it on my shoulder and wind it as a diadem”. The opponent is the man of my lawsuit, my enemy! Job would expose the works of the evil; take them on his shoulder for all to see!

God reveals Himself to Job

Job 38-42 are the chapters, where God, as a Father, begins to teach Job. He does not break Job down, He does not mock him, no, He takes Job next to Him and shows him several dimensions, the creation of the world, the sea, the sun and the underworld. God takes Job in the invisible world and shows him the foundations of the earth. There are pillars; there is a cornerstone (symbol of Jesus Christ). The sea is often symbol of darkness and uncalculated danger. God teaches Job on the realities of the spiritual world. There is God and there is darkness. The sun is a picture of the dawning of the new day and God who comes to conquer Hades.

Jesus showed us the right image of God. He, who has seen Me, has seen the Father. He came to expose darkness and bring light. He taught grace and truth and showed the true character of God opposed to the evil hidden ways of Satan.

Then God introduces Job to two rulers of darkness: the beast of the sea and the beast of the earth. See also Revelation 13. Job 40: 10 the behemoth and the Leviathan, the dragon. These two powers were created for pleasure but they revolted against God and became evil. God wants us to be aware of the spiritual world. God is not the Author of evil and did not create it, but evil came because of wrong choice against God.

God wants His man Job to be clothed with glory and trample the wicked down. God says in Job 40: 6-7 “Let your wrath or breath be dispersed, look on everyone proud and force it to submit and tread down the wicked or tread the wicked to his place”. See also Romans 16: 20 and Malachi 4: 3 “You shall trample the wicked, for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet…”

Job elevated and restored

Now that the enemy has been exposed and that God’s servant has gone through this terrible test, God takes Job and places him in a position of authority in the spirit. Now God takes vengeance against the enemy: now Job has a voice, which must be heard and whatever Job prays will be done. First, Job prayed for his friends and God heard and secondly, God poured out His blessings upon Job like never before. There comes an end to the tyranny, evil does not have the last word but God has it. In Christ, He has overcome the evil one and showed the church the way to conquer him and bring him low, preparing the way for the Kingdom of God to be fully established on the earth.

Even though there might be times of trouble or tribulations, which are caused because of our commitment to God, (sufferings experienced by means of the enemy – see 1 Peter 5: 9 “Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world”) yet God is able to turn all things for the good of those who love Him. Therefore we are more than conquerors in Him. See Romans 8: 37-39Yet in all these things, we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”.

Let us be people of determination, carrying the testimony of Job “blameless, upright, fearing God and shunning evil”, which is the testimony of Christ!

We must be Christians that are acquainted with the spiritual tactics of darkness. Make sure that we stand without sin in the world, not giving the opponent any open door to attack. Let us be people, standing strong despite of everything that comes our way, knowing that God stands on our side and will surely help us. He will seek a way of escape, making sure we will come out of a challenge better than ever, giving God all the honor for the great victory (1 Corinthians 10: 13)!

May God richly bless you!

Irene Maat

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