I grew up in church from the time I was three days old. I've also worked in and out of Christian radio for a lot of years so I've heard biblical teaching ad nauseum it seems on just about every topic you could think of including the story of Job. He is famous for his declaration of trust in the Lord even though God was testing or trying him... the problem is, it wasn't God doing the trying.
Years ago I did what few do these days, I actually READ the story of Job from the book of Job in great detail and several things stood out to me. For the point of this blog the big take away was that Job was mistaken about the source or root of his dilemmas.
In Job 1:6 Satan comes in uninvited with the normal parade of the sons of God. Chapter one is basically a back and forth between God and Satan where God asks Satan a series of questions. Remember, God never asks a question to gain information as he already knows everything. He always asks questions to get people to perceive differently but of course Satan is stubborn and ignores God's probing thought altering questions insistent in his evil mind that if he can just kill Job, the earth will be easier to take.
In Job 2:3, God gives Satan one last out by asking "Have you considered that no one in the entire earth is like him (Job) ... This is God's "dig" at Satan saying basically "Did it ever cross your mind that you would lose if you went head to head against my main man, Job?" It all is made perfectly clear as to who is causing Job's problems in Job 2:6 which reads And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand, but spare his life.”
God did nothing to Job but keep a protective order on his life that prevented his death. All the attacks that followed were at the hand of Satan, the master deceiver and manipulator. Thru the next 30 plus chapters, dozens and dozens of times over and over Job accuses God of being the one bringing his troubles to him. These in fact are all false accusations not unlike what we see in the body of Christ today. It's very common when a person gets sick for one example then to blame God for the sickness. It's what I call "the Job mistake".
Our fallen mind operates in what Max Lucado calls "the lower story" often insisting upon logical reasoning to explain what can only be discerned in the spirit. Job was very close with God and walked in extraordinary integrity, especially for the time in which he lived, but this also shows you that personal integrity and spiritual discernment are two very different things. This is the danger when modern leaders try to suggest that giftings without integrity make the giftings worthless. That is moose ka ka. A gift under a Christmas Tree and a gift laying in the barn yard in a cow pattie are both still a valid gift. That's another topic for another blog but the point is, Job had great personal integrity but poor levels of discernment.
Job's famous statement from Job 13 is though He (God) slay me, I will trust Him. While Job had a great understanding that God was a witness to everything happening in the earth, he did not have the discernment to see Satan behind it all. Thus he made the same mistake many still do today in blaming God for what is Satan's doing. Another common way this seeps into our doctrines is when a tragedy strikes and a teen ager is killed. Well meaning preachers at the funeral say things like "God needed a fresh flower for His heavenly garden so he called Johnny home early.." Again, that is moose ka ka... Johnny was stolen from the earth by a real devil that was successful thru whatever means in shortening his life here on earth prematurely.
Jeremiah 2:26 says a thief is ashamed when found out. Satan loves to work in secret and Satan is masterful at blaming others for his own doing. The root of all shame is Satan blaming you for His doing. Jesus makes an interesting statement that doesn't get much pulpit time when He said IF the thief be found, he (the thief) must repay seven times... Don't get me wrong, I'm not talking about going on a demonic which hunt here.. but I am saying when things aren't lining up, when problems arise, when stuff isn't falling into place like it should, while we pray and trust God's master plan, we also need to be looking for the thief. If we can find him, he must repay!
One final point on today's blog. Another terrible doctrine has come from Job's statement in Job 1:21 about God giving and taking away. Even a popular worship song included this misunderstanding a few years ago. This is Job's blind spot... as much personal integrity as Job had, his root issue was being so familiar with God's principles that He missed God's person. He mistakenly felt that god was of two minds about a given thing and was unsure of His divine actions. In short, Job was speaking from his natural mind and that verse is a historical statement about Job, not a revelation about God. Job walked the walk more with more purity than anyone else in his time, but he missed the simplicity of intimacy with God and the discernment that brings. May we not make the same mistake...
Satan is the author of confusion, deception and abuse. He comes to do three primary things.. steal, kill and destroy. When you see theft, death and destruction in a person's life, rest assured that is NOT God working thru them but instead there is a devil loose somewhere pulling some strings. Let's let Satan own his own crap. God is HOLY, god is never confused about giving and taking away as if he made a mistake in giving the original gift.
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