Topical - Suffering, Joy in... Worship of Submission
1. The book of Job begins what is classically called, the books of poetry in the bible.
a) Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon.
b) The books of poetry do not fit any chronological order.
c) Job goes way back from a historic standpoint. In fact, it is one of the oldest books of literature.
d) Our thought of poetry, we usually think of a rhythm and a rhyme.
(1) But not so with Hebrew poetry. It isn’t in rhyme or rhythm at all.
(2) It’s a multiplying of thoughts, and it’s building on a thought.
(3) So if you’re looking for rhyme, or if you’re looking for a rhythm, forget it!
2. The Man
a) Job was not a fictional character, he was a real man
(1) Ezekiel name him (14:14-20)
(2) James names Him (5:11)
b) Job was a godly man, a wealthy man, and a man with a sincere concern for the needs of others
c) However he was also a perplexed man, for he could not explain why God should permit him to experience so much trial. GO TO SYLLUBUS
3. The Theme
a) Note in 2:3 that God did not have a cause against Job
(1) God does send chastening when His children persist in sin (Heb.12:1-13)
(2) The wicked have their enjoyment today but will soon be cut down (Ps.37; 73)
b) Neither of these facts met the need of Jobs life.
(1) God had divine purposes in mind in permitting Job to suffer
4. The Main Lesson in Job
a) God is completely Sovereign in His dealings with His people
b) God will never permit anything to come to the life of an obedient Christian that is not for his good and God’s glory.
(1) Remember, God does not have to explain His ways to us
(2) It is enough for us to know that He cares and that He never makes a mistake
(3) We do not live by explanations, but by the promises of God in His Word!
I. Job’s Prosperity – 1:1-5
A. Job’s Character & Circumstances
1. Blameless and Upright, Feared God and Shunned Evil (v.1)
a) The word “blameless” [perfect in KJV] must not be thought of in the sense of sinless perfection.
(1) That’s usually our connotation with the word “perfect”.
(2) In the Hebrew, and Greek, or in our Bible, it is a word that means, “a total man”. He’s a mature man; he’s got it together.
(3) So, “he was a perfect man, upright”, the word literally in Hebrew is, “straight”.
(4) So you have, “he’s an honest man”.
b) What did God think of Him?
(1) The Holy Spirit is the One who is the Author of the Scriptures (1:1)
(2) The Lord told Satan Job was blameless (1:8 cf. 2:3)
(3) What does God think of you?
(a) Do not worry about what others think.
(b) Be concerned only about what God thinks!
c) Plus, he fears God and hates evil.
(1) Those two always go together – It is like Grace & Mercy.
(2) To hate evil – Literally “to turn away from”
The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way And the perverse mouth I hate (Proverbs 8:13)
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction (Proverbs 1:7)
(3) When you see a person who is involved in evil things, you know that the fear of the Lord is not in his heart. Job had the fear of the Lord, which led him to this hatred of evil.
"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28 NKJV)
d) Avoiding Bad Company
(1) Proverbs 1:10, 16 – do not consent to sinners trying to entice you
(2) 1 Corinthians 15:33 – evil company corrupts good morals
(3) 2 Corinthians 6:14 – do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers, what fellowship does light have with darkness
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man's all (Ecclesiastes 12:13)
2. Job was rich in possessions (v.2-3)
a) A very Great Household
(1) He had a great number of servants.
(a) Of course you’d have to have, to watch over that large of flocks and camels, and oxen and all.
(2) This man was the greatest of all of the men of the east.
(a) That would be east of the area of Jerusalem, or Israel. So he was the greatest of the men.
b) Job did not permit his money or possessions to take the place of God
(1) God had blessed Job, and he was not hesitant to praise God for all that He had done.
(2) Be careful to not forget God if he blesses you with wealth
(a) Deuteronomy 8:1-20 – beware lest you forget the Lord who brought you up ought of Egypt
I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. (Philippians 4:12 )
c) The Danger of Covetousness – Luke 12:16-21
Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses." (Luke 12:15 NKJV)
Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; "but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21 NKJV)
d) The True Riches Are Found in Christ
(1) Ephesians 1:3; 3:8
(2) Colossians 2:3
II. Job’s Adversity – 1:6-2:13
A. Satan’s First Accusation and Attack (1:6-22)
1. Satan has access to heaven & must report to God cf. Revelation 12:7-12
a) Sons of God – v.6
(1) Sons of God is a common name for the angels.
(a) In the book of Hebrews it said, “Which of His sons did he say, or which of the angels did He say at any time, thou art my beloved Son, this day have I begotten thee”.
(b) There’s only one begotten Son, but the angels are referred to as sons of God, from a creative sense.
(c) Even as John said, “Beloved now are we the sons of God, it does not yet appear what we shall be. But we know that when He appears, we’ll be like Him”
b) Satan Acuses the Saints before God – v.7-12 cf. Zech.3:1ff.
(1) Satan walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (1Pet.5:8-9)
(a) We must resist him.
(b) We have an advocate, Jesus Christ the righteous (1Jn.2:1-2)
(2) God asks Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job?”
(a) “Considered” is a military term.
(1) It’s the word that would be used of a general of an army, who is studying a city, preparing for an attack.
(2) He would develop his strategy by finding out the weakest part of the cities defenses. Thus he would be developing his strategy to destroy the city.
(b) Satan had been studying Job. He had been developing a plan of attack. Looking for the weak points. Satan offered to God his evaluation, having studied Job carefully.
(c) Satan studies us & know our weakness.
2. Believers are “hedged about” by the Lord (v.9-12)
a) Here is a man on the earth, of both whom God, and Satan, are conscious about.
b) Even as God and Satan are conscious of you. Satan has his philosophy.
(1) God allows Satan the opportunity to test that philosophy.
(2) But we again note, that Satan’s power is limited by God. Satan could not touch Job, until God gave him the permission to do so.
(3) Satan cannot touch believers without God’s permission (Luke 22:31-34).
c) So Satan went forth, to begin his work of destruction.
(1) Jesus said, “The enemy”, referring to Satan, “has come to rob, to kill, and destroy”. We see how he destroys Job’s possessions.
3. Satan’s Dirty Work (v.13-22)
a) The Destroyer Strikes
(1) So Satan did his dirty work. In a day’s time, he wiped Job out. One disaster after another, until Job was stripped of his possessions, and of his children.
4. Job’s Response was a “Worship of Submission” (v.20-22)
a) Job accepted his place in life.
(1) After Job received the news that he had lost everything including his family, he worshiped the worship of submission. The Bible says;
Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. (Job 1:20).
(2) God was not chastening him for sin like David—He was allowing Satan to test Job, yet Job said:
"Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD." In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong. (Job 1:21-22).
(3) Many people are not able to worship God because:
· they do not accept their places in life.
· they do not accept their jobs, their careers, or other circumstances.
· their response is bitterness, & they cannot worship.
Do you get bitter and angry with God for negative circumstance in your life?
(4) When God brings negative circumstances in our lives, He always has a positive purpose.
· Job was able to look beyond his present circumstances & see God’s good plan.
But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. (Job 23:10)
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (Romans 8:18)
b) If we do not have problems we will not grow!
Moab has been at ease from his youth; He has settled on his dregs, And has not been emptied from vessel to vessel, Nor has he gone into captivity. Therefore his taste remained in him, And his scent has not changed (Jeremiah 48:11).
The people of Moab had had it so easy and so smooth that they had become rotten. The analogy Jeremiah uses is from winemaking. Winemakers in Jeremiah’s day put crushed grapes in a container and let them sit. Eventually the bitterness and the sediment—called dregs, or lees—would settle into the bottom. The winemaker would pour the wine off the top into another vessel, and the remaining bitterness would settle into the bottom of the second container in more sediment. The he would pour that wine into another container, and another, and another—and over a period of time, all the sediment and its bitterness would be removed (they used to make vinegar), and the wine would have the aroma of sweetness that the winemaker wanted it to have. Moab had never lost its bitterness, because the people had never been poured from difficult situation to difficult situation, where the bitterness could be purged out.
We are better off in life if God pours us from trial to trial to trial, because each time we’re poured into a different trial, each time we’re confined in a different undesirable circumstance, a little of the bitterness if removed.
John MacArthur, Jr. The Ultimate Priority p.152
c) Put yourself for a moment in Job’s shoes.
(1) What would your response be to this kind of a situation if you were totally wiped out?
(a) Would it be that of worshiping God, or would we be charging God foolishly?
(b) Would we be saying, “Well God doesn’t love me. God doesn’t care about me.
(c) I don’t know why God is against me”.
(d) I’m afraid that we would be making foolish charges against God if things like that should happen to us. We see the integrity of this man, Job. He is a total man.
B. Satan’s Second Accusation & Job’s Proper Response (2:1-13)
1. Turning your trials into triumphs (James 1:2-8)
a) God tells us to expect trials.
(1) It is not as “if you fall into various trials”
(2) But “when you fall into various trials”
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." (John 16:33 NKJV)
Paul said, "We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God." (Acts 14:22)
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; (1 Peter 4:12)
(3) Definition of trials – temptations, To try; to test; to prove
b) God allows temptations and trials for a purpose.
(1) To make us stronger and much more pure and righteous
(a) Sandpaper – It's the friction that smoothes out the rough edges
(b) Oyster – A grain of sand (acts an irritant) until it forms a beautiful Pearl
(c) Melting of metel—the worker melts the metal and removes the dross until he sees his face.
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, (2 Corinthians 4:17 NKJV)
2. The Needed Attitude: “Count”, “Know”, “Let” & “Ask” (v.2-4)
a) God tells us to count – a joyful attitude (v.2)
(1) It means “to evaluate”
(a) When we become Christians we must evaluate our life and set new goals (Philippians 3:13-14)
(b) We must evaluate the trials of life in the light of what God is doing for us, & live for the things that matter the most. What matter’s the most to you?
(2) Our values determine our evaluations.
(a) If we value comfort more than character, then trials will upset us.
(b) If we value the material more than the spiritual, then we will not be able to “count it all joy.”
(c) If we live only for the present and forget the future, then trials will make us bitter, not better.
(d) Job had the right attitude and outlook, “But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, (not if, but when) I shall come forth as gold. (Job 23:10 NKJV)
b) God tells us to know something – an understanding mind (v.3)
(1) Faith is always tested &,
(a) That the testing of your faith produces patience
(b) “patience” means, “to be steadfast, more persevering, more enduring.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:6-7)
(2) Testing works for us not against us
(a) Satan tempts us to bring out the worst – (1P5:8)
(b) God tests us to bring out the best (Rom.8:28)
(c) Its our choice in which way we respond
(1) 2 Corinthians 12:7-10
(1)Most of us ask the Lord to change the circumstances
(1)God does not want to change the circumstances, He wants to change you.
c) God tells us to let something happen – a surrendered will (v.4)
(1) God want’s to produce fruit in our lives!
(a) Fruit of the Spirit (Gal.5:22-23) – The ability to keep going when things get tough!
(1) Romans 5:3-4
(b) God wants us to glorify Him.
(2) God wants to make us like Jesus (Hebrews 5:8)
(3) God wants us to grow up
(a) Illustration of Brittany not growing up
(4) God want’s our cooperation – (Philippians 2:12-13)
(a) If we resist Him, then He chastens us into submission
(b) If we submit to Him, then He can accomplish His work.
d) God tells us to ask of something – (v.5)
(1) Ask God for wisdom (v.5-8).
(a) God knows all things, we don’t! Therefore, we come to Him asking Him for wisdom
(b) We need wisdom so we will not waste the opportunities God is giving us to mature.
(c) If God delivered us from every trial, then we would not grow in character
(d) God is more concerned with you character than your comfort