TODAY’S READING: JOB 1-6
Job’s godly character and wealth; the dialogue between God and Satan; Satan permitted to afflict Job; the negative counsel of Job’s wife; Job’s three friends come to visit; the first speech of Eliphaz; Job’s response.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
The chapters in today’s reading are familiar to most, and easy to understand for all. (For a general overview, refer to the memory verse from the Book of Job from Week #18, on Day 117.) A few practical things to glean from these chapters:
Concerning Satan –
Satan is extremely powerful, but not all-powerful. Though he “goes to and fro in the earth… walking up and down in it,” the Book of Job lets us know he’s actually on God’s leash! He can only go as far as God permits him. That lets us know that everything that takes place in our lives is either APPOINTED by God, or ALLOWED of God. Take heart!
Concerning Suffering –
Suffering is not a matter of misfortune or bad luck, nor is it always chastisement from God for some wrong that we have refused to remove out of our lives. Sometimes we suffer for doing what is right. God’s own testimony of Job was that he “was perfect and upright and one that feared God, and eschewed evil” (1:1).
Concerning People –
As well-meaning as people can sometimes be, they can also be used by Satan as in the case of Job’s “friends,” to criticize, accuse, and condemn, thinking they have things all figured out, when they don’t really know all of the facts, and are functioning off of humanistic reasoning and half-truths.
Some of the things in the Book of Job that are not as easily seen as some of those practical gleanings just listed, have been laid out in one of the most incredible commentaries I have ever read, that happens to have been written by one of my dear friends, Jeff Adams. The commentary is entitled: Job: Adventures in the Land of Uz! and can be obtained by visiting www.realityliving.org.
In Job, God gives us an incredible illustration of believers in tribulation. If ever anyone qualified for enduring tribulation it was Job! Remember that the next major event on God’s prophetic calendar is a seven-year period we often call the “Tribulation” which will fall upon this earth. Some of the prophecies in the Book of Revelation are incredible and probe the limits of our imagination. To help us understand, God has given us the story of a man named Job. More than a simple story about his trials, Job is a wonderful picture of the coming time of Tribulation, and helps us to better understand the future.
As you approach the Book of Job, consider the picture that is drawn. The parallels between what happened to Job and the prophecies of the coming time of Tribulation are too many to be mere coincidence...
The story of Job takes place in the land of Uz, exactly where the faithful remnant of Jews will be hidden during the Tribulation. Uz always has a connection with Edom in the Bible, and the famous “Petra” (from the Greek word for “rock”) is in Edom, the refuge God has prepared for His people...
Job sits in his misery for seven days, while his friends look on speechless. In the coming Tribulation the Jews will suffer at the hands of the Antichrist for a seven-year period. The world will be powerless to help, and most will genuinely believe that they are only getting what they deserve. Don’t think that World War II did away with anti-Semitism.
Actually, the “Great Tribulation” is the last half of the seven years, though we often apply the word “Tribulation” to the entire period. The first three and a half years are a time of false peace, when the Antichrist comes into power through a brilliant series of treaties that brings peace to the Middle East, and structures a disarmament. (Daniel 8:11-14, 25, 9:27; Isaiah 28:18)
At midpoint of this seven-year period the Antichrist breaks his treaty with Israel, and in the reconstructed Jewish Temple declares himself to be God. This is the abomination spoken of by Daniel. (Daniel 9:27; 8:13-14; 11:31; Matthew 24:15) These last three and a half years are of world war and great destruction. The Book of Revelation counts it as a period of 42 months. (Revelation 11:2) Chapter divisions in the Bible were not added until several hundred years ago, and most people may not believe that God had anything to do with it. But it is interesting to notice that Job has 42 chapters...
Very few people can boast that the Devil himself has personally persecuted them, but Job could. He was the direct target of Satan. This is also a figure of what will happen to Israel in the time of Tribulation. Israel will be attacked by the very Devil…
At the end of the book of Job, Job’s captivity is turned, and he receives double all that he lost. In similar way, the captivity of Israel will be turned around after the purging of the Tribulation, and will be restored to the position of blessing.
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
In the dialogue between God and Stan – Job 1:6-12 (Through it we can understand the meaning of Christ’s statement to Peter, that Satan desired to “sift them as wheat” – Luke 22:31).