Job 1:13 And there was a day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house:
14 And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them:
15 And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
16 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
17 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
18 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house:
19 And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
20 Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped,
21 And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.
22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.
The opening chapter of the book of Job is packed full of so much information we need to understand regarding the actions of people in the world. The Bible shows us that history often repeats itself because people refuse to listen to God.
In v.12 we read that Satan left the presence of the LORD to go and cause trouble for Job. Satan was convinced that if Job suffered losses, he would reject God and be like all lost sinners. Job was not a lost sinner. Job feared God. Job was a servant of God. God said so Himself. True saints are not like the lost. True saints do not revert back to their old lifestyle. They have been changed and that change is a permanent change. When a professing Christian goes back to their old lifestyle, they prove that their profession was false. We need to take God’s Word as our authority, not man’s experiences.
In verse 13 we read the first of several tragic events that happened to Job’s family. As we already noted earlier, Job’s children liked to spend time together. They liked to have parties together. On this particular day as they were gathered together in the eldest son’s house, a messenger came to Job and described the situation that had just taken place.
Verse 15 tells us the Sabeans fell upon some of the servants and slaughtered all but the one who escaped. As that messenger was reporting that scene, another came and said that the fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep, and the servants and consumed them. We know that God dwells in heaven. We also know that God created fire and lightening. However, we also know from this passage that Satan went out from the presence of the LORD to attack Job. We know that the devil has great power. His power is limited to whatever the LORD allows him to have. God gave him permission to access some of God’s possessions to attack one of His children.
The devil was at work here causing havoc for Job’s family.
In verse 17 another messenger came with more bad news. Now the Chaldeans have attacked some of Job’s possessions. We noted in verse 3 that Job was the greatest among the men of the east. Job was a wealthy man who had great possessions. The devil stirred up enemies who would go and attack and either destroy or take away Job’s possessions.
In verses 18-19 we see that the news was hitting closer to home. His sons and his daughters were now killed as well. The devil had the power to use the wind to knock down the house and kill all that were in it, except for one messenger who escaped somehow.
No doubt Job was devastated by all this bad news. He did not know what was going on behind the scenes. All he knew at this time was what he was being told. Job did what would be known as a common way of mourning in Bible times. Job rent his mantle, shaved his head and fell down on the ground . . . The last phrase is unique: “He worshipped”. He did not curse. He worshipped the LORD. This is important.
We see here what worship looks like. It is a humility before an Almighty God. It is a recognition of His power and authority. It is also a recognition of His care for His children. It is a recognition of what is truly important. Job lost all his physical possessions. Yet he realized he had what was most important and that was his relationship with the LORD.
In verse 21 Job again shows us what walking in the fear of the LORD looks like. He understood that he came into this world with nothing. Everything he had was a gift from God. No doubt he had worked hard for that. He had hired servants that he paid to help him look after all that he had. He also had his own children who helped him look after all that he had. That was all gone now.
Job understood that the LORD had every right to take away these precious gifts he had been given. As we noted, Job did not know what was going on behind the scenes here. He assumed that the LORD took these things from him. He did not know that the devil was behind this attack against him. The devil was trying to prove to God that Job was not genuine. Satan wanted God to see that it is not that difficult to turn people away from Him. Satan was wrong. God knew His faithful servant better than the devil did. God also knew His power to save. He knew the change that takes place in a truly saved person’s life. As we will see, Job needed some fine tuning, but the foundation was sure and there had been some good building on that foundation as well.
In verse 22, Job did not sin. He did not go on a pity party. He did not accuse God of an injustice. He did not charge God foolishly. He did not turn his back on God. This is important. There are people today who have become bitter because they have suffered loss in one way or another. There are those who are facing severe health issues. They cannot get at God, so they take it out on others around them. Too often we hear of marriage break-ups because some tragic event happens in a family. Why would you attack those closest to you when you face trouble?
We see again how important it is to have a right relationship with the LORD. A superficial relationship with the LORD will not do. We need to know Him and we need to serve Him faithfully. God prepares us for every situation we will face if we know Him and walk in the fear of God. We do not need to plan ahead for these things. We simply need to live each moment for His glory.
For those who read these devotionals, but are not saved, my prayer is that you would listen to God’s Word. You will break down if you do not know the Lord. You will turn to smoking, drinking, cursing, rock music or any number of other sins to try to deal with your trouble, if you do not know the Lord. God is not a puppet on a string. In order to be able to respond in a godly manner in all things, it is necessary to truly know the Lord. He offers life to those who turn to Him in repentance and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. As His child walks humbly and faithfully with Him, he or she will have all they need to face every situation that comes along. As Paul wrote:
Romans 8:37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
Those who are saved can have the same response that Job had here in this chapter. Job had his hope in the true God.
We need this today as well. Trust in the true God today and learn to live in the fear of God.