What about Job?
Actually....here's what God asked Satan.....
Job 1:8 (NLT)
Then the Lord asked Satan,
“Have you noticed my servant Job?
He is the finest man in all the earth.
He is blameless—a man of complete integrity.
He fears God and stays away from evil.”
But, I'm really getting a little ahead of myself....so, let's start at the beginning.....
Satan and the Lord were having a conversation concerning Job. Satan tells God that Job fears Him and stays away from evil only because of God's blessings on him....and that if He takes away everything he has, things would change. So...the Lord gave Satan permission to do what he pleased with Job's possessions....but not to harm him physically.
One day 4 different messengers came to tell Job that he had lost everything....including his children.
Job's response was.....
Job 1:21 - I came naked from my mother's womb and I will be naked when I leave. The Lord gave me what I had, and the Lord has taken it away.
Praise the name of the L0rd.
In spite of everything that had happened to Job...he did not sin by blaming God.
So....Satan and God talk again....and Satan tells the Lord (isn't that funny...that Satan needs to tell God anything?!?!?).....that if He takes away Job's health...that he would surely curse him. The Lord once again allowed Satan to do as he pleased with Job...but he couldn't kill him. Job was struck with terrible boils from head to foot.
Job 2:9 is a much repeated verse of scripture where Job's wife tells him to curse God and die.
Now...I've always thought this was a terrible thing for her to say...but, as I read the scripture this time, a quote came to mind...."hurting people hurt others". Job's wife was hurting and suffering, too. She had just lost her children.
Job's response to his wife....
Job 2:10 - Should we accept only good things from the hand of God and never anything bad?
So....in all this....Job said nothing wrong.
Now....four of Job's friends came to comfort him.
Eliphaz, Bildad, Zophar and Elihu
Another old saying came to mind as I read all the terrible things that they had to say to Job....
"with friends like you, who needs enemies?"
They thought.....as was the thinking of that day and time....that all of Job's woes were brought on by sin.
At first, they were very grieved at even the sight of Job. They sat on the ground with Job for seven days and nights....and didn't say a single word to him.
It would have been best if they had just continued to keep quiet!!! They tried to get Job to confess to whatever sin he had committed and ask God for forgiveness. Job maintained his innocence.
Here are some of my favorite verses from Job's conversation with his "friends".....
Job 5:9 - He does great things too marvelous to understand. He performs countless miracles.
Job 5:17b - Do not despise the discipline of the Almighty when you sin.
Job 5:18 - For though He wounds, He also bandages. He strikes but His hands also heal.
Job 6:14 - One should be kind to a fainting friend, but you accuse me without any fear of the Almighty.
Job accused his friends of being unreliable. His friends were convinced that Job had done something sinful to deserve all the tragedy he had endured.
Bildad accused Job's children of sinning against God and that was why they were destroyed.
Job 10:1 - I am disgusted with my life. Let me complain freely. My bitter soul must complain.
(not...I've gotta ask...who of us hasn't felt that very same way sometime in our own life?!?!?....please don't let me think I'm the only one!!!)
Zophar told Job in 11:6b - Listen, God is doubtless punishing you far less than you deserve.
He told Job to get rid of his sins and to leave them behind and all his troubles would disappear!!!
(I believe if I had been Job, I would have told my friends to go home!!!)
Job....sarcastically (can you blame him???)...responded to Zophar in 12:1....
"You people really know everything, don't you? And, when you die, wisdom will die with you!"
(I had to laugh when I read this!!!)
Job 13:5 - Job told his friends....
"If only you could be silent! That's the wisest thing you could do!" (ain't that the truth!!!)
Job 14:1 - How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble!
Job 14:2 - We blossom like a flower and then wither. Like a passing shadow, we quickly disappear.
Eliphaz told Job...."you are nothing but a windbag".
(now....that's like the pot calling the kettle black!!!)
Job asked his "friends" would they never stop talking and told them that they were miserable at comforting him. He told them that he would at least try to take away their grief and encourage them if they were suffering....and he told them that they degraded him even if he tried to defend himself.
Job told his friends that they should fear their own punishment for their attitude toward him.
Job began to question God....he asked why the wrong deeds of people seem to go unpunished.
Job 31:35...Job says, "If only someone would listen to me!!!"
(I've had that same thought myself!!!)
In Chapters 38-42, the Lord challenged Job.
Job 40:4 - Job tells God.....
"I am nothing - how could I ever find the answers?
I will cover my mouth with my hand."
Job 40:5 - "I have said too much already. I have nothing more to say."
(Boy...that's certainly been me, too!!!)
Job 42:3 - Job told God that he had questioned His wisdom with ignorance - that he was talking about things he knew nothing about - things far too wonderful for him. Job repented of all the things he had spoke questioning God.
The Lord told Eliphaz and his friends that He was angry with them. He told them to take a burnt offering to Job and that Job would pray for them and he would accept Job's prayer on their behalf.
As badly as his friends had belittled Job....he prayed for his friends and the Lord restored Job's fortunes....twice as much as before.
To summarize the Book of Job.....Job suffered because God wanted to prove Job's integrity to Satan.
In James 5:11 Job was described as a man of great endurance.
Most all of us have heard of the "patience of Job". After reading this book of our precious Bible....I think Job's patience was with his "friends". I'm not sure I could have sat for hours on end letting people tear me down with their words!!!
My favorite verses were......
But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives and He will stand upon the earth at last. And after my body has decayed, yet in my body, I will see God. I will see Him for myself. Yes, I will see Him with my own eyes. I am overwhelmed at the thought."
As I typed those verses of scripture, I'm reminded of the Mercy Me song, I Can Only Imagine....
(please turn my Play List off before listening)
(please turn my Play List off before listening)