Scandals. Hypocrisy. These are infectious terms that present themselves in many manners of our societies today. So much so, if not cautious, they seem nearly the norm.
“There was a wise man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil (Job 1:1).”
Long ago, in a land far away, a man named Job would unknowingly become an example of understanding the state of suffering in our world. Without a knowledge of why, this man would lose literally everything, not least of which was his own health.
As the one who is ever accusing comes before God (1:6), Satan is reminded of this blameless and upright man (1:8).
Job is accused of only being so because of the hedge of protection placed around his life (1:9-10). Satan’s accusation was meant to demean and to diffuse Job’s character. God is confident His servant’s integrity will withstand testing (1:12).
That Satan knew of Job already speaks loudly for his life. This man was no son of Sceva (Acts 19:14). It is evident that Satan has desperately tried already to penetrate this man’s household, but to no avail.
What was it that Satan knew of Job that caused him to hate him so much as to desire to bring such devastation and destruction to his life? He is described as one who is blameless and upright, one who fears God and shuns evil.
We are also privileged to know of Job’s standing as a husband, father, leader, and priest in the midst of his family. It’s found in those introductory verses, two through five. Verse four tells us something of his children.
“And his sons would go and feast in their houses, each on his appointed day, and would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them (1:4)”
Job taught his sons to be responsible citizens. Being responsible included laboring, constructing, and maintaining. While it is evident they did so, this discipline from their father included far more than the physical realm. They also learned to labor, construct, and maintain relationships.
Job’s sons learned the right way to treat ladies. They continued to care for their sisters, each in turn, even in their own homes. Unspoken but obvious, his sons must have watched how he treated their mother and transitioned that teaching into their own lives. Job’s sons learned that it was a gift to be able to give, and that they were indeed their sister’s keepers.
Job served God as the priest of his family (1:5). He sanctified his family. Job was not willing to render the spiritual condition of his family to others. He personally and intentionally stood before God on their behalf.
As one reads through this very old book of the Bible, some amazing facts of what Job understood become known. Job knew that his Redeemer lives (19:25), that Jesus would one day come, and also that one day after his (Job’s) body died and decayed, that very same body would stand in the presence of his God, resurrected (19:26-27).
In the midst of Job’s amazing facts though is evidence of a simple man whose focus was on God and his family, and it made Satan very angry.
As we approach this Dad’s Day, I am very thankful for my earthly father. Through his provision and influence, much of my character is what it is today. He was a great man willing to work hard and make sacrifices for the needs of his family.
As a child growing up I don’t remember acknowledging the significance of this fact about him, but now I treasure its truth; he believed it was important to carry his family to church rather than send them.
I praise God everyday for our son and that I have the privilege of being a father. I wish I could tell you that I did everything right; that I was a dad like Job. I fell woefully short of that. I’m very proud of my son though, and joy filled to watch him as a young man demonstrate the characteristics of one who wants to be like Jesus.
Happy Father’s Day!