JOB 1:8-11: “And the LORD said to Satan, “Have you n considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” 9 Then Satan answered the LORD and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? 10 Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: When we read the Bible in its’ entirety we are confronted with questions that we would normally avoid. The Book of Job is one book that pushes the envelope of this fact. In all honesty, I would rather live in the land of “promises” than have to consider some of the “tough questions” the whole counsel of Scripture bring to my life. However, in the end, I truly desire to grow in Christ. There is no growth without pruning. There is no pruning without revelation. There is no revelation without being confronted by the truth.
The difficult question that I am faced with this morning as I read the opening chapter in Job is this – “Why do I serve the Lord?” Have I surrendered my life to Him because of the revelation of “WHO” He is, or because of the possibility of “WHAT” He can do? This was the accusation that Satan made against Job. Satan said to the Lord, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side?” In other words, Job only serves You because of the benefits and blessings You have bestowed. Remove these, and Job’s faith will vanish.
Do I serve the Lord only for the benefits and blessings He has bestowed? When I am called to walk through difficult times and situations, do I humble myself under His mighty hand, or do I get angry? Have I sanitized my Christianity by removing the call of suffering, replacing it only with the call of blessing and victory? So many questions rush to my mind and heart. They are difficult questions to be sure. Difficult, because they bring me to the mirror, and I do not know if I truly will like what I see.
I know what I want to see. I want to see Jesus. The question is, am I willing to pay the price, whatever it is, to become like Him? I know that I have already lost many who might be reading this post. Some will cry – simply believe, claim the promises, rise up in victory! Yet, I think of the words of another, much wiser than myself. I think of the words of one who was tried and tested in ways I simply view from the pages of Scripture. The Apostle Paul writes –
“But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” (Philippians 3:7-11 ESV)
This morning, I am not surrendering to the attacks of the enemy. Rather, I am submitting to the call of the Cross. The reality of life is not how much I can gain, but how much I can lose so that I can know Him. When the things of earth grow strangely dim – I then am looking in the light of His glorious face. When my faith is built on nothing less, than Jesus blood and righteousness, I am coming to the place of spiritual maturity. As long as my faith is built on what I possess or what I experience I am but a babe in Christ.
Lord, I desire to become fully grown in Christ Jesus. I desire to be set free from the tyranny of the moment and secured by the surety of the eternal. I desire to know Jesus, the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, becoming like Him in his death – so that I may attain the resurrection from the dead – both now, and when I die!
In Jesus Name!