Job 1:1

 

 The Bible says in Job 1:1, “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” We do not know anything about the land of Uz other than it was some place in the Middle East. It is not important where you are from, but it is important what kind of person that you are. We do know a lot about Job. We have the entire book of Job to tell us about him. Verse one tells us what kind of a person Job was. Job was a believer. In the entire history of the human race every person is either a believer or a non-believer. Which are you? Job was a man of God. It says that he was “perfect.” This has two meanings. He was perfect compared to other people, and Job was perfect in God’s eyes. Once a person is justified by faith, that person is accounted by God as if that person were perfect. That is the blessing and place before God that we all receive who are believers. It says in Romans 4:3, quoting Genesis 15:6, “Abraham believed God and it was counted unto him for righteousness.”

 

Job was “upright.” This refers to how he lived his life. He not only believed in God; Job had a life that demonstrated that he was a believer. That is very important. Jesus said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven.”

 

Job “feared God” and “eschewed evil.” If we fear God, it means that we have respect for God because we know that He punishes evil and we do not want to put God in a position that He must decide to punish us or to give us the just results of our actions. If we fear God like that, then we will eschew evil. We turn from evil to the Lord. The first time we turn from evil to the Lord Jesus, He saves our soul and makes us a just person in His sight.

 

The next four verses in the book of Job give us quite a few specifics about Job’s life. Job had a great life full of the blessings of God. It says in Job 1:2-3, “And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters. His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.” Life could not have been any better for Job. He was successful. He was prosperous. He had a great family. No one “in the east” was richer than Job. If you wanted to preach the gospel of prosperity, you could definitely use Job as an example. Job served God faithfully and Job was blessed.

 

When Job was in this state of tremendous success and abundance, he did not forget God. Many people do. It says in Job 1:4, “And his sons went and feasted in their houses, every one his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them.” This shows that the children were happy, living the good life. They enjoyed each other’s company. That is what every parent would want for their children.

 

Job was a good father, so he looked after his children’s spiritual needs too. The Bible says in Job 1:5, “And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.” Job knew that the most important thing for his children had to do with their spiritual needs. And the most important part of their spiritual needs was the forgiveness of sins. Turn to Jesus to find the forgiveness of sins. Job also knew that the most important thing for his children had to do with what was going on “in their hearts.” Just because someone is from a good Christian family that has everything organized in a proper way does not mean that such a person has their heart right with the Lord. That is why some individuals go astray when they leave their home. Self-will and selfishness (also known as evil) can be in the heart and no one but God can see it, and it manifests itself later. Sometimes a person from a Christian does not have their heart right. It says in Romans 10:9, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”  

 

Notice the last phrase in Job 1:5, “Thus did Job continually.” Until we get to heaven, the problem of sin is a continual problem. That is why it is so good to have Jesus as Savior. Jesus not only saves the believer from the punishment of sin at the judgment, but Jesus also gives the believer daily cleaning so that we can “continually” walk in fellowship with the Lord. That is what Jesus was teaching when He did the foot washing of the apostles. We are clean through faith in Christ as far as our standing with God is concerned, but our feet get dirty daily in this life. Daily confession keeps us close to the Lord, not our good works. That is why the Apostle John included himself in First John 1:9 that says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

 

Job had a great life going both spiritually and materially, but then something changed. What initiated the change is something that took place in heaven that is described in the next seven verses. Everything is decided in heaven: both good and bad. The devil can only do what God permits him to do. More bad would happen if God did not restrain it. For example, in these last days the antichrist cannot take control until God permits it to happen. There have been many antichrist type leaders in human history, but none of them have been able to get the control that they wanted because it was not God’s time. And so it says concerning the day when the antichrist will take over (but only for seven years) in Second Thessalonians 2:6-12, “And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. [7] For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let until he be taken out of the way. [8] And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming. [9] Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders. [10] And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. [11] And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: [12] That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”  

 

The Bible says in Job 1:6-7, “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. [7] And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, from going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” This verse tells us a couple of revealing things about Satan. Interesting that Satan is called one of the “sons of God.” That is probably referring to angels. Satan is an angel. Satan is a created being. Anyone that God has created can be called loosely a “son of God.” We also see that Satan is primarily involved with the earth. Satan told God that he was “walking up and down” in the earth. That is true, but Satan left out a few minor details such as the fact that he was destroying as many souls and as many lives as possible, and the fact that he was fomenting as many divisions, wars, murders, thefts, adulteries, and false teachings as possible, and that he was holding people in bondage by spiritual darkness, and that he was opposing God and Christ wherever he could. The New Testament makes it a little bit more clear. It says about the devil in First Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”

 

The Bible says in Job 1:8, “And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” Of course, God knows how every human being lives. God had His eye on Job. God was proud of Job. I am sure that God wished that there were more people like Job. When you serve the Lord faithfully, people may not know, but God knows. There is conversation in heaven about you. There is attention given to you. You are noticed. God undoubtedly knew that once He boasted about Job to Satan, that Satan would want to correct the situation. You see, God had a plan for Job’s life. Up to this point Job had been protected, but God wanted to give Job a great opportunity: to be used for the rest of human history as the great example to all other believers that you might be called upon to suffer greatly for the name and honor of God, and that it is possible to remain faithful to the Lord no matter how much you suffer. It says in James 5:11, “Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.”

 

We have the rest of the conversation between God and Satan in heaven recorded for us in Job 1:9-12, “Then Satan answered the Lord and said, doth Job fear God for naught? [10] Hast thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. [11] But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. [12] And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thine power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.” As we already mentioned, it appears that Satan is primarily limited to the earth in his activities, but as an angel he also has some access to heaven. Satan goes up to God and accuses the believers. How pleased God is when there is a believer that Satan cannot accuse. Of course, once again we see that Satan can do nothing except the Almighty all-powerful God allow it. Another interesting point to make is that Satan will be excluded from his access to heaven in the last days. Speaking about the future, it says in Revelation 12:7-12, “And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, [8] And prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven. [9] And the great Dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. [10] And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. [11] And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony, and they loved not their lives unto the death. [12] Therefore, rejoice ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” One of the reasons that it gets so bad on the earth during the seven year period of the Great Tribulation is that the devil causes even more trouble than normal “because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.”

 

The devil wanted to cause trouble for Job, and now was the devil’s chance to do so. The next verses will tell us about the horrible things that happened to Job. How can we be prepared spiritually for a time of great sorrow or loss in our own lives? Make sure that you love Jesus now, and that the goal of your life is to serve Him no matter what happens to you. Jesus suffered for us on the cross of Calvary. We should be willing to suffer for Him. We just might be asked to prove that we love the Lord more than anyone or anything. Live by faith in the little things of life, and then you will be prepared to use that same faith and trust in the Lord when something greater comes along.

 

 

 

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Copyright; 2017 by Charles F. (Rick) Creech
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