Thursday, March 8, 2012

Job Lessons

The Book of Job is not exactly the most popular book in the Bible. However, the effort to read and grasp its message brings great dividends. Here's Steve Murrell on 7 lessons from the Book of Job
1. Bad things happen to seemingly good and innocent people. Four times Job is described by God as "blameless and upright" yet he experienced horrible suffering.

2. The devil is real and he comes to "steal, kill and destroy." Chapter 1 makes it clear that all Job's pain and loss was an act of the devil, not an act of God.

3. People experiencing bad times need good friends. When you have friends who are suffering, try doing what Job's friends did in Job 2:13 "Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was."

4. Good friends often give bad counsel. Unfortunately, after that week of silence, Job's friends opened their mouths and stuck both feet in, nasty sandals and all.

5. Some things can't be explained and some "why" questions can't be answered. The book of Job never answers the "why" question. But it does paint a good picture of "how" - how to find God in our pain and how to respond to calamity in a way that honors God.

6. We can find God in our pain and loss, if we do what Job did when he realized the extent of his loss - "then he fell to the ground in worship..." (Job 1:20) Do we only worship God in the good times?

7. In the end, the blessing of God caught up with and overtook Job. Most people don't press through and read the whole book of Job. But if you endure til the end, you will find that "the Lord blessed the latter part of Job's life more than the former." (Job 42:12) And if we endure past our pain, we will find God in the end.