[Excerpt taken from “He’s the Keeper of My Soul”.]
I Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”
But God is faithful! I love that part!! Did you know that as a child of God, He has to approve everything that comes into your life? Yep! Whatever you’re going through HAD to be approved by the Lord before it could show up in your life.
God isn’t sitting up in heaven, nudging Jesus saying, “Hey Jesus, did you hear that Sis. Mary lost her job? I didn’t see that coming!” Nor does He rev back on His throne when we cry out to Him about a problem and say, “Child!! You don’t say! Who would have thought that would happen?” NOTHING catches Him by surprise!
Let’s take a look at Job for a minute. Satan comes before the Lord – ready to accuse mankind – when God asked him where he had been, he stated that he had been walking throughout the earth. For what, you may ask? Satan was walking throughout the earth to see what he could find on God’s beloved (mankind) to accuse them before God (which he continues to do even today). And God says have you seen my faithful servant Job? And Satan responded that Job only loves You because You’ve blessed him with so much!
Let’s think about that for a minute. Job was living the “blessed and highly favored” lifestyle. He was faithful to God, had a beautiful family, plenty of animals and servants, and he was very rich. But then Satan wanted to attack him – BUT! he couldn’t do ANYTHING until the Lord granted him permission!! Let’s look at the text;
Verse 6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them. 7 And the LORD said to Satan, “From where do you come?” So Satan answered the LORD and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.” 8 Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” 9 So Satan answered the LORD and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? 10 Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around 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 now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” 12 And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.” So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.
Now, check verse 10 out again! Satan is telling God, You have placed a hedge of thorns around him, his family and all that he has!! He’s saying, “I can’t get at him, because You’re protecting him!!” Then in verse 12, God GRANTS SATAN APPROVAL to attack Job – BUT! God said, “You can attack his possessions, BUT don’t put your hands on Job himself!”
Now, look how Satan goes about attacking Job.
Job1:13 Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house; 14 and a messenger came to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, 15when the Sabeans raided them and took them away—indeed they have killed the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you!”
16 While he was still speaking, another also came 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!”
17While he was still speaking, another also came and said, “The Chaldeans formed three bands, raided the camels and took them away, yes, and killed the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you!”
18 While he was still speaking, another also came and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, 19 and suddenly a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people, and they are dead; and I alone have escaped to tell you!”
20 Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. 21 And he 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.”
22 In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.
In verse 8, God said that Job shuns evil and loves the Lord! And in verses 20-22 Job responds just as God said he would.
Can you imagine God having a conversation with the devil, or Jesus or one of His angels, where He says, “_____ (fill in your name), won’t throw in the towel on his/her faith because of the trails that he/she is enduring, because HE/SHE LOVES ME!”
Okay, now since Job hasn’t reacted how the devil wanted him (to curse God), he goes before God again in chapter 2! You see, Satan’s mission is to keep us as far from God as possible. Why, you may ask? Because he knows how much God loves us! He knows that mankind is the apple of God’s eye and that the only thing that he can do to get under God’s skin is to mess with, and ultimately, steal His beloved children.
1 “Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the LORD. 2 And the LORD said to Satan, “From where do you come?”
Satan answered the LORD and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”
3 Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil? And still he holds fast to his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to destroy him without cause.”
4 So Satan answered the LORD and said, “Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life. 5 But stretch out Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will surely curse You to Your face!”
6 And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand, but spare his life.”
7 So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. 8 And he took for himself a potsherd with which to scrape himself while he sat in the midst of the ashes.
9 Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!”
10 But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.”
Let’s look at it again, because Job still hasn’t cursed God, Satan goes back before the Lord to say, he hasn’t cursed You because YOU WOULDN’T LET ME FULLY HAVE HIM! Let me touch him and his health and surely he will curse You to Your face! In verse 6 God says okay, you can attack his health, BUT! you can’t kill him!
God’s approval was absolutely, positively, sho’ nuf needed before Satan could do anything to Job, and he was still given limits as to what he could do to him! In verse 10, the Bible says that although Job had lost his children and possessions and was now sick with boils, he still wouldn’t sin with his lips! We know the end of Job’s story. God gave him “double for his trouble” – literally! In Chapter 1 it says that Job had 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen and 500 female donkeys, but in Chapter 42 it says that God blessed his latter days more than his beginning, and he had 14,000 sheep, 6,000 camels, 1,000 yoke of oxen and 1,000 female donkeys!
Now, I don’t know about you, but Job went through a lot of hell! He was attacked in Chapter 1 but wasn’t restored until Chapter 42. But, in all that he went through, he held on to God’s hand – he KNEW that God would deliver him and he refused to give up on his faith!
Job is no different than you and me. Just as the Lord’s approval was needed before Job could be attacked, His approval is still needed before you or I can be attacked. While Job is no different than us, are we different from Job? How would we react, or what would we think or say through such horrific times in our personal life? Don’t answer that! 🙂
Just know that the Lord is so crazy about you that His hand is always on you, even through the hardest of times.