Summary: With the tragedy that has come upon our nation, we must be careful not to react in a sinful manner.
This week, the greatest tragedy in American history has befallen our country. Our beautiful America, who before had seemed to be above much the tragedy and devastation, terror and conflict that had stricken much of the rest of the world, has had a terrible blow struck. The scenes of war that seemed to be prevalent in other countries has now a part of our national picture.
We are devastated. The loss of life is beyond imagination. We cannot even begin to cope with what our eyes behold. The pain of what has happened is almost more that we can bear.
We mourn our loss, not only of the loss of life, and the loss of resources, but also the loss of our sense of well-being, our sense of protection, our sense of detachment from the evils of the rest of the world.
If we think that this might be new sensations, I must direct you to the story of Job.
Job was a righteous man. He loved God and honored Him. God had blessed Job and given him through many years many rewards for his faithfulness. Job’s wealth and fame spread throughout his home region and beyond.
The years of God’s blessing had comforted Job and given him ease. He felt God’s protection and no doubt was grateful for his prosperity. He had become accustomed to the his lifestyle and had no reason to believe that disaster was just around the corner.
When people have many years of peace and prosperity, it is natural for us to believe that we are beyond the barbarities of war and that somehow we have evolved beyond the ravages of evil.
We have no reason to believe that Job was any different. After many years of peace and prosperity, Job probably believed that nothing would ever disturb his life.
But Satan had a plan. His desire was to cause Job’s downfall. But Satan is not omniscient. He believed that the only reason Job had faith in God was because of his prosperity and blessings. So by removing the blessings, he would remove Job’s reason for his faith.
How wrong he was! A true believer does not trust in God for what he can get out of God. He trusts in God because he loves God. Because to love God, selfishness, which is the basis of sin, has no part in a believer. We love God because he first loved us. (I John 4:19)
Satan has a plan. It is his desire for us to lose faith in God and to fall into sin. He still believes that we are a people who, because we have had the blessings of God, have enjoyed peace and prosperity by His hand, will fall into sin if that is taken away.
But the text says, “In all of this, Job did not sin. . .”
How did Job “not sin?”
I. JOB DID NOT SIN BY BLAMING GOD.
Verse 1:22 says, “In all of this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.”
One of the first emotions we feel after the initial shock of tragedy is anger. Because we believe that God is in control, (and He is!) and He protects us, (and He does!) that we should not have troubles and tragedies in our life.
There is no place in scripture that says that God will never allow trouble in our life. But you will find many other scriptures that talk about how God goes with us and helps in time of trouble. Psalm 23, ”Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 3:1-6,” O LORD, how many are my foes! How many rise up against me! Many are saying of me, "God will not deliver him." But you are a shield around me, O LORD; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head. To the LORD I cry aloud, and he answers me from his holy hill. I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the LORD sustains me. I will not fear the tens of thousands drawn up against me on every side.”
God even goes so far as to tell us that even in the midst of tragedy, we can still have joy. James 1 says, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.”
It is His presence that sustains us in the time of tragedy.