Summary: Is it possible to simply love God for Him... and hold fast to your integrity... even if you have lost all your material and physical possessions?
Blessings Through Suffering
Job 1:1-21; 2:1-10
Is it possible to simply love God for Him... and hold fast to your integrity... even if you lose all your material and physical possessions? Even if it cost you, heaven forbid, your job... your possessions and your health? Job did. Or... are you serving God for His blessings and the things He does for you? Or, are you worshipping God because you really love Him? Think about it as we go into the lesson.
I. We do not know the author of the book of Job... nor the time it was written. We do know, however, that it is a poetical book.
I don’t think there is anyone who is interested in suffering... in embracing pain and affliction. Suffering isn’t much fun... and I don’t believe it was intended to be an enjoyable experience. But we can learn from the book of Job that... indeed... there are blessings through suffering. There are lessons to be learned... and a deeper insight into the word of God. As we take a peek at Job... a sneak preview behind the scenes, so to speak... and see what Job went through, I believe it will be somewhat of an eye-opening experience. I can say with certainty that nobody has gone through as much as Job did... and I pray that you never will.
Roy Campanella’s Story
*Roy Campanella was one of the first African Americans to play in the US Baseball major leagues. In a distinguished career he won the Brooklyn Dodgers Most Valued Player award many times, and in 1955 was in the team that won the World Series.
But in January 1958 his career was cut short after a car crash left him a quadriplegic. After he was injured he spent a lot of time in the Institute of Physical medicine and Rehabilitation in New York City. One day he stopped to read a gold plaque upon one of the walls, and for someone who had been blessed with such athletic gifts it resonated deeply within him:
"I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.
I was made weak, that I might learn to humbly obey…
I asked for health that I might do great things.
I was given infirmity that might do better things…
I asked for riches that I might be happy,
I was given poverty that I might be wise…
I asked for power, that I might have the praise of others.
I was given weakness that I might feel the need of God…
I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life.
I was given life that I might enjoy all things…
I got nothing I asked for, but everything I had hoped for.
Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered.
I am, among men, most richly blessed!
*Source: Scott Higgins, using information from Baseball Library.com and Chicken Soup for the Soul.
Copyright © 2001 OzSermonIllustrations. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 13, 2006 .
Please get your Bible... and turn with me to the first chapter of Job. (1) There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil. (2 )And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters.( 3) His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.
The country Job lived in was the land of Uz, in the eastern part of Arabia, which lay towards Chaldea.
The author says that (1) Job was perfect. It didn’t mean that Job was sinless. There is only One without sin... and that is Jesus Christ. It meant that he had integrity ...he was honest and blameless.
(2) Job was upright: Job was a righteous man... he was a true worshipper of God.
(3) He feared God.... Job was a God-fearing man.
(4) He eschewed evil.... He avoided wickedness
Job was not only a righteous man, a man who loved God and worshipped Him... but he was very prosperous as well. This lets us know that we don’t have to be poor or destitute to worship God. It’s all right to have wealth and riches... as long as it is not our focal point.... as long as we put God first... and it does not take away our ability to worship the Lord.
Many of the Patriarchs were rich but ..as we search the Scriptures, we learn that they worshipped God. Look at Genesis 12: 1-3: "Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed."