A word that is often used to help describe God’s relationship to His creation is the word ‘sovereign.’ Sovereign simply means that God is supreme. God is supreme in His excellence, as well as in His power. God is also supreme in His control. That truth is seen in the story of a man called Job.
There once was a man named Job who lived in the land of Uz. He was blameless—a man of complete integrity. He feared God and stayed away from evil. One day the members of the heavenly court came to present themselves before the Lord, and the Accuser, Satan, came with them. “Where have you come from?” the Lord asked Satan. Satan answered the Lord, “I have been patrolling the earth, watching everything that’s going on.” 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.” Satan replied to the Lord, “Yes, but Job has good reason to fear God. You have always put a wall of protection around him and his home and his property. You have made him prosper in everything he does. Look how rich he is! But reach out and take away everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face!” “All right, you may test him,” the Lord said to Satan. (Job 1:1, 6-12)
Human logic tells us that if you are righteous and walk with God, you will be protected from all evil. Yet stories such as the one about Job teaches us differently. Every time I read the first two chapters of Job, I want to cry out and say, “No God, don’t do it! Don’t tell Satan about Job. Can’t you see that Job’s trying to do what is right? Protect him Lord!” Yet God said, “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.”
Scripture calls Satan ‘the accuser of the brethren’ (see Rev 12:10) and in the opening chapters of Job, he makes two accusations:
1) “Job is not that righteous of a man. He’s serving You only because You are blessing him.”
2) “You are bribing Job to love You. Stop blessing him and he will turn against You.”
Perhaps none of us knows for sure how we might respond if we have to face what Job had to suffer. Would we stay strong and true, or would we be tempted to turn against God? To be honest, I think that most of us are a lot weaker than we would like to admit. Therefore, I take courage in these words found in the book of Jude –
“To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” (Jude 1:24-25)
Though Job was on trial, God was still in control. Join me again tomorrow in our studies.