Job Who?

There was a man.

Not a myth or legend or fable, but a real flesh-and-blood man. He lived, most likely, around the lower Euphrates in present-day Iraq.  We think the Garden of Eden was originally in the neighborhood.

His name was Job and he feared, as in “revered”, God.  Here in Job 1:1-5, we see a man who did his dead-level best to live right and reject evil.  With vast numbers of livestock, a large staff, and 7 children, Job was wealthy – and busy.

Yet, he was determined to maintain a righteous household.  After the considerable partying on his grown kids’  birthdays, Job would send for them.  He would bless them and offer sacrifices on their behalf in a ceremonial purification.  It was a kind of spiritual insurance policy against, “maybe they forgot God in the celebrating.”

He did this faithfully.  Job was God-fearing, honorable, and had a great reputation.

Which makes the next 7 verses seem bizarre.  God asks Satan if he’d like a crack at Job’s faith.  Fortunately, a verse in James provides some much-needed light:  “You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord – that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.”

It is important that we keep this verse in mind as we consider this story.  God is always working.  He works in His own way, on His own schedule.  And He won’t be reduced to our neat little assumptions or preconceptions.

What we too often lack is an accurate perspective.

Next post: a scene straight out of Tolkien

Do you have opinions about God or the Bible that may be the result of an inaccurate perspective? or lack of information?

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