Job 1:13-22 Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, (14) and there came a messenger to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, (15) and the Sabeans fell upon them and took them and struck down the servants with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” (16) While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants and consumed them, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” (17) While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “The Chaldeans formed three groups and made a raid on the camels and took them and struck down the servants with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” (18) While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, (19) and behold, a great wind came across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young people, and they are dead, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” (20) Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. (21) And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.” (22) In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
Unlike Job, we are given a behind the scenes look at what was happening in all his suffering and loss. Job was not to blame. He was a righteous man and even in all this, he did not sin or charge God with wrong. Satan brought the attacks and all his evils were under the perfect sovereign control of God.
God never explained to Job what we are allowed to know. That whole scene in chapter one between God and Satan was never revealed to Job in all his lifetime. The lesson was that Job was to trust the Lord no matter what. His “friends” got it all wrong. It wasn’t the simple health/wealth prosperity theology – you do good and God will bless you. If bad things happen to you, it is because you did wrong. Nope. All wrong.
I mean this as encouragement to any of you who are suffering trials right now. It is a question for all of us to consider – “Is my present suffering and my trials worse or even as bad as those of Job?” We could apply the same question to others in scripture: the Israelites in Egypt, Noah surrounded and isolated in a world of evil, Daniel in the lions’ den, the Apostle Paul, David when pursued by Saul….on and on we could go.
And yet, the Lord delivered all of them. None of their situations were too hard for the Lord. Sometimes the deliverance came through removal from this evil world – like the martyrdom of Stephen. As John Bunyan wrote regarding the murder of Faithful in Vanity Fair, the people of God who are persecuted to death arrive immediately at the Celestial City while the rest of us continue on our pilgrimage to it in this evil world.
YOUR situation, trials, sufferings, and circumstances are not too hard for the Lord. He promises to take us safely through them. He is present with us in it all. And there will be an end to it one day. Our task is to pray without ceasing, to persevere in faith in Christ, and to know that we can cast our cares upon Him because the One who knows each hair on your head knows your circumstances even better than you do. And He cares. He cares for you.