Daily Words of God: Knowing God | Excerpt 43
Satan Once More Tempts Job (Sore Boils Break Out Across Job’s Body)
a. The Words Spoken by God
(Job 2:3) And Jehovah said to Satan, Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that fears God, and eschews evil? and still he holds fast his integrity, although you moved Me against him, to destroy him without cause.
(Job 2:6) And Jehovah said to Satan, Behold, he is in your hand; but save his life.
b. The Words Spoken by Satan
(Job 2:4–5) And Satan answered Jehovah, and said, Skin for skin, yes, all that a man has will he give for his life. But put forth Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse You to Your face.
c. How Job Deals With the Trial
(Job 2:9–10) Then said his wife to him, Do you still retain your integrity? curse God, and die. But he said to her, You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.
(Job 3:3) Let the day perish wherein I was born, and the night in which it was said, There is a man child conceived.
Job’s Love of the Way of God Surpasses All Else
The Scriptures document the words between God and Satan as follows: “And Jehovah said to Satan, Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that fears God, and eschews evil? and still he holds fast his integrity, although you moved Me against him, to destroy him without cause” (Job 2:3). In this exchange, God repeats the same question to Satan. It is a question that shows us Jehovah God’s affirmative assessment of what was demonstrated and lived out by Job during the first trial, and one that is no different to God’s assessment of Job before he had undergone Satan’s temptation. Which is to say, before the temptation came upon him, in God’s eyes Job was perfect, and thus God protected him and his family, and blessed him; he was worthy to be blessed in God’s eyes. After the temptation, Job did not sin with his lips because he had lost his property and his children, but continued to praise the name of Jehovah. His actual conduct made God applaud him, and give him full marks. For in the eyes of Job, his offspring or his assets were not enough to make him renounce God. God’s place in his heart, in other words, could not be replaced by his children or any piece of property. During Job’s first temptation, he showed God that his love for Him and his love for the way of fearing God and shunning evil surpassed all else. It’s merely that this trial gave Job the experience of receiving a reward from Jehovah God and having his property and children taken away by Him.
For Job, this was a true experience that washed his soul clean, it was a baptism of life that fulfilled his existence, and, what’s more, it was a sumptuous feast that tested his obedience to, and fear of God. This temptation transformed Job’s standing from that of a rich man to someone who had nothing, and it also allowed him to experience Satan’s abuse of mankind. His destitution did not cause him to loathe Satan; rather, in Satan’s vile acts he saw Satan’s ugliness and contemptibility, as well as Satan’s enmity and rebellion toward God, and this better encouraged him to forever hold firm to the way of fearing God and shunning evil. He swore that he would never forsake God and turn his back on the way of God because of external factors such as property, children or kinfolk, nor would he ever be a slave to Satan, property, or any person; apart from Jehovah God, no one could be his Lord, or his God. Such were the aspirations of Job. On the other face of the temptation, Job had also acquired something: He had gained great riches amid the trials given unto him by God.
During his life over the previous several decades, Job had beheld the deeds of Jehovah and gained Jehovah God’s blessings for him. They were blessings that left him feeling enormously uneasy and indebted, for he believed that he had not done anything for God, yet had been bequeathed with such great blessings and had enjoyed so much grace. For this reason, in his heart he often prayed, hoping that he would be able to repay God, hoping that he would have the opportunity to bear testimony to God’s deeds and greatness, and hoping that God would put his obedience to the test, and, moreover, that his faith could be purified, until his obedience and his faith gained God’s approval. And when the trial came upon Job, he believed that God had heard his prayers. Job cherished this opportunity more than anything else, and thus he didn’t dare treat it lightly, for his greatest lifelong wish could be realized. The arrival of this opportunity meant that his obedience and fear of God could be put to the test, and could be made pure. Moreover, it meant that Job had a chance to gain God’s approval, thus bringing him closer to God. During the trial, such faith and pursuit allowed him to become more perfect, and to gain a greater understanding of God’s will. Job also became more grateful for God’s blessings and graces, in his heart he poured greater praise on the deeds of God, and he was more fearful and reverent of God, and longed more for God’s loveliness, greatness, and holiness. At this time, though Job was still one who feared God and shunned evil in the eyes of God, with regard to his experiences, Job’s faith and knowledge had come on in leaps and bounds: His faith had increased, his obedience had gained a foothold, and his fear of God had become more profound. Though this trial transformed Job’s spirit and life, such a transformation did not satisfy Job, nor did it slow his progress onward. At the same time as calculating what he had gained from this trial, and considering his own deficiencies, he quietly prayed, waiting for the next trial to come upon him, because he yearned for his faith, obedience, and fear of God to be elevated during the next trial of God.