That s one of the most difficult things to deal with as a Christian.

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1 Intrductin Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? Jb 1-2 Gd s deepest cmfrts are nt attached t answers. That s ne f the mst difficult things t deal with as a Christian. But Gd desn t leave us hanging, at least nt a lt. At least we have Jb Jb ffers sme insights gained n the anvil f experience. Jb lst everything: pssessins, family, health and he had 3 lusy friends t bt. Jb respnds t his friends with 3 answers: ne crrect answer, but 2 wrng nes: - He s crrect t say that it wasn t his persnal sin that caused his tragedy. - He s incrrect t say that 1) Gd is uncaring, and that 2) Gd is nt in cntrl. The truth is, Gd is always in cntrl. Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

2 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 2 But the thing is: t us many times it desn t lk like it. In fact, it lks ut f cntrl, running amuck. That s where we are tday, with Jb. --having lst everything-- sitting in a pile f ashes, with bils n ur skin frm head t te (2:7). Granted, mst f ur bils are unseen. But nevertheless they exist within ur minds and hearts. The pain f disease. f divrce. f unwanted pregnancy. f sexual addictins. f lss f frtunes..f past behavir. f bitterness and hatred. I m sure nne f us wuld say that we dn t deserve the effects f sin.

3 3 But at the same time, when we cme t Jesus and give urselves ver t Him, we have certain expectatins abut prtectin and care. I autmatically think f 1 Peter 1:5, speaking f Christians, 5 wh thrugh faith are shielded by Gd s pwer Really? It desn t seem like it smetimes! But that s what he says. And it s nt just fr a little while but until the cming f the salvatin that is ready t be revealed in the last time. (1 Pet 1:5) 1 Peter eches Jb. Jb teaches us that suffering and grief are a natural part f even the believer s life. Peter tells us the same thing in verses 6-7, 6 In this yu greatly rejice, thugh nw fr a little while yu may have had t suffer grief in all kinds f trials. 7 These have cme s that yur faith f greater wrth than gld, which perishes even thugh refined by fire may be prved genuine and may result in praise, glry and hnr when Jesus Christ is revealed. (1 Peter 1:6-7) I knw nne f us want t hear this. I certainly dn t. Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

4 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 4 But Gd is giving us a view int the eternal side f reality, shwing us that what happens t us isn t by chance. Perhaps the best part f this bk is that nt all suffering is directly assciated with ur mistakes. The Bk f Jb puts an eternal cntext arund ur lives I. The Heavenly Cuncil We see in Chapter 1 that there are things ging n in heaven abut which we knw nthing. Let me intrduce yu t the heavenly cuncil. 6 One day the angels came t present themselves befre the LORD, and Satan als came with them. 7 The LORD said t Satan, Where have yu cme frm? Satan answered the LORD, Frm raming thrugh the earth and ging back and frth in it. 8 Then the LORD said t Satan, Have yu cnsidered my servant Jb? There is n ne n earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man wh fears Gd and shuns evil. 9 Des Jb fear Gd fr nthing? Satan replied. 10 Have yu nt put a hedge arund him and his husehld and everything he has? Yu have blessed the wrk f his hands, s that his flcks and herds are spread thrughut the land. 11 But stretch ut yur hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse yu t yur face.

5 12 The LORD said t Satan, Very well, then, everything he has is in yur hands, but n the man himself d nt lay a finger. Then Satan went ut frm the presence f the LORD. (Jb 1:6-12) Ww! This is a peculiar scene, isn t it. Gd and Satan talking abut a particular individual. Did yu knw that each f us is that imprtant t? Yu see, there is smething ging n abut which we knw nthing. Jb knws nthing. He is ttally unaware f this csmic drama. He isn t in charge. He isn t determining what ging t happen. The nly thing he can d is t cntrl hw he will respnd t the circumstances. And upn that basis, he will be judged faithful r faithless. Again Jb isn t t blame. Verse 8 says, 8 he is blameless and upright, a man wh fears Gd and shuns evil. (Jb 1:8) The writer tells us up frnt that Jb isn t being punished fr his sin. In fact, he s s upright that he ffers sacrifices fr his adult children (v. 5), 5 Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

6 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 6 5 Early in the mrning he wuld sacrifice a burnt ffering fr each f them, thinking, Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed Gd in their hearts. This was Jb's regular custm. (Jb 1:5) But Jb s blamelessness desn t prtect him frm suffering and grief. In fact, it s the exact ppsite. His blamelessness makes him an bject f Gd s grace. Did I really say grace? Hw can Jb be an bject f grace? He lst everything: pssessins, family, health. Simply because he s an example f what trusting in Gd means. He was given the pprtunity t knw Gd. And it appears that ne f the best places t knw Gd is sitting n a pile f ashes scraping yur bils with a piece f brken pttery. This is an imprtant principle. We learn the mst abut Gd when we need Gd. When we have lst smething dear t us.

7 7 When He s the nly ne wh can help us. Why des Gd d this? Because at this mment Gd is testing us t see if we really believe in Him. Like the Israelites wh were taken int a wasteland withut fd and water t see what was in their hearts. Like Jseph wh was sld t a gypsy caravan and later thrwn in prisn. Like Jeremiah wh was thrwn dwn a well. Like Jnah wh was thrwn verbard falling deep int the abyss. Like Elijah running fr his life after his victry at Mt. Carmel. Gd wants t see if we are just serving Him t see what we can get ut f Him. Or if Gd is enugh fr us. But this is a struggle because we hear cmpeting vices. When we re sitting n a pile f ashes, we hear vices like Jb did. Even ur lved nes will encurage us t give up n Gd. Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

8 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 8 Jb s wife suggested that he curse Gd and die (2:9). Jb s three friends were discuraging. They suggested that his sinful life was the prblem. I dn t need anyne t reinfrce that thught. I think that enugh fr myself. Jb, hwever, since he trusted Gd, was able t hld n t his integrity. He said nthing wrng abut Gd. II. It Is a Questin f Trust Hw much d yu trust Gd? Ww! That s hard t answer, isnt t it? D yu trust Him in every situatin, r nly in sme? Can yu trust Him with yur life? Wuld yu trust Him even if yu lst smene yu lve? These are really hard questins, aren t they?

9 9 But there are peple here tday wh have been tested like this befre r are ging thrugh it right nw. The key t healing yur spiritual sres is t trust Gd! And trusting means that dubt abut Gd never even enters yur mind. Jb teaches us three things abut trust: 1. Trusting Gd Bils Dwn T Whether We Believe What He Says Is True Or Nt. Jb uttered these classic wrds after he had gne thrugh the wrst testing that anyne has pssibly gne thrugh. 15 Thugh he slay me, yet will I hpe in him; I will surely defend my ways t his face. (Jb 13:15) It really bils dwn t smething that simple. D yu believe what He says is true r nt? 2. Trusting Gd Des Nt Always Mean that We Will Understand What He Is Ding, r Why He Is Ding it. This is the real hard part! Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

10 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 10 This is where faith and trust have t perate at their highest level! When all f the sudden everything in ur life starts ging bad, we begin t wnder where Gd is! We wnder if He has frgtten abut us, r if He still cares abut us. When all f ur best laid plans g bad, we wnder why Gd wuld allw this t happen t us! We may even get mad at Gd.but 3. Trusting Gd Is Nt Based On Whether He Gives Us Everything That We Ask Fr. Selfishness desn t prduce trust. Hw many peple have yu knwn that have said smething like this: I asked Gd fr smething, and he didn t give it t me, therefre I can t trust Him. This is a very selfish mtive. And this will never develp trust in Gd, nly fear. Hw d we develp a deep trust in Gd?

11 11 Hw d we get t the place where Jb was where he culd say, Thugh He slay me, yet I will trust Him? He had a relatinship with Gd. A real relatinship. Nt just ne day a week, but 24 hurs a day, 7 days a week. He drew clse t Gd. He deliberately chse t be clse t Gd by, a. By taking seriusly what the Lrd says, 28 The fear f the Lrd that is wisdm, and t shun evil is understanding. (Jb 28:28) b. By making a cvenant with his eyes, 1 I made a cvenant with my eyes nt t lk lustfully at a girl. (Jb 31:1) c. By pssessing an eternal persective, 10 Shall we accept gd frm Gd, and nt truble? (Jb 2:10) 4 His wisdm is prfund, his pwer is vast. Wh has resisted him and cme ut unscathed? (Jb 9:4) Delivered by Dane Byles n 02/19/2006 t the Leander Church f Christ at Crystal Falls

12 Have Yu Cnsidered My Servant? 12 d. By cntrlling his language, In all this, Jb did nt sin in what he said (Jb 2:10) Cnclusin We wn t trust a stranger Gd desn t want t be a stranger t any f us. He desires fr us t have a persnal relatinship with Him. The mre we knw Gd, the mre we will find Him faithful, and the mre we will trust Him. This was Jb s secret: He knew Gd. That s hw ur faith makes sense f what seems senseless. D we knw Him? D we trust Him? Fr ur salvatin? Fr ur daily needs? Fr everything?

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