Old Testament Survey Book of Job

Introduction: This is most likely the oldest Book in the Bible. It was written before the Law was given. It deals with the age old question: “Why do the Godly suffer?”  The first 17 Books of the Bible, ending with Esther, are historical Books. We now come to the Books of poetry, beginning with Job and ending with the Song of Solomon.

In a very short time frame, Job loses his wealth, possessions, family (except his wife), and his health. Often, folks wonder: “Why do good people have awful disasters or terrible things happen to them?”  They may notice that those who are not saved; lived wickedly; or seemingly good folks; very rarely or never have those things happen to them.

This Book teaches us that we do not always understand why things happen to us the way they do. It also teaches us that God is not obligated to explain why.

Date: unknown

Human writer: unknown. Matthew Henry, author of one of the finest Bible commentaries every written, believed that Elihu (one of the characters in this Book) was most likely the writer. However, no one knows for sure. The one fact that we do know, is that the Book of Job is in the Jewish Cannon of scripture and the author is the Holy Spirit.

Job was a man of great wealth and influence. He honored God by staying faithful throughout all of his sufferings.  It is easy to remain faithful as long as all goes just the way we want it to go. The test of our faith and character comes when we are going through great trials and sufferings. Job was “run through the mill,” as we might say.  Throughout discouragement, he was 100% faithful to God and God’s Word.

Principal characters: Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar: = Job’s detracters.                                                              Job’s wife, satan, Elihu

  1. The Introduction: chaps. 1
  2. Perfect and upright: 1:1-4
  3. perfect: whole heartedness for God. Sincerity; this does not mean nor refer to “sinless perfection.”  Morally pious in his actions, life, thinking.
  4. feared God: reverent. He was a righteous man with the Truth of God.
  5. Eschewed evil: vs 1
  6. Job avoided evil; he hated it; withdrew from evil.
  7. I Thessalonians 5:20 “Abstain from all appearance of evil”
  8. The Tempter – 1:6-12
  9. Vs 10-11 – satan says that Job was only good because he was prosperous
  10. The goal of the tempter / temptation
  11. Vs 11 – to get Job to curse God to His face
  12. the devil tries to get man to blame God for your troubles

Vs 6: sons of God

  1. some say fallen angels – some say good angels and refer to Genesis 6:2
  2. not correct
  3. Luke 20:35: angels are sexless beings
  4. We have here, in the case of Job, the same grand assembly held, as was before, in that of Ahab;                    I Kings 22:6-23. These were prophets – Godly men who were now in heaven.

The Temptation Vs 13-19

  1. Everything Job had was all lost in one day
  2. four tragedies at once
  3. Job didn’t know any explanations of why he was to go through these trials – tragedies hard times etc.  Romans 8:28-29
  4. his friends had no idea of God’s conversations with satan
  5. they had no idea of the outcome of Job
  6. we also, have no idea of God’s plan – purpose  – outcome, for our lives
  7. if he had known and if we knew, we would not have to exercise faith in God
  8. faith is what God wants us to have – Hebrews 11:6
  9. if God revealed everything to us, we would panic and do our own will.
  10. God’s purpose for us would be side tracked by us
  11. since we don’t know the beginning and the end of our trials ahead of time:                                                      we must continue in faith to a faithful God and His Word
  12. satan does his best to get Job to curse God
  13. he uses Job’s wife Job 2:9, as well as the attack on Jobs health Job 2:7-8 Revelation 12:12

Job’s Response: Job 1:20-22

  1. He worships God vs 20
  2. rent his mantle – tore his coat or robe
  3. shaved his head
  4. Job felt the anguish – grief – bitterness of what had just happened to him
  5. yet, he, Vs 20 – worships God – he fell prostrate on the ground. He humbles himself before God
  6. Job knows that all he ever got and had – he got from God Vs 21
  7. Vs 22 – Job did not sin nor blame God for what had happened

Satan Attacks Job’s Health

  1. Boils: 2:3-8
  2. potsherd – vs 8 – a piece of earthen ware  / pottery
  3. to sit in the ashes is the deepest mourning / humility
  4. Skin for skin – vs 4
  5. a man will part with all that he has, to save his own life
  6. the devil basically says that Job has only lost material goods
  7. he lost his children – but not his own skin or life – yet he still has his health
  8. Vs 5 – give him bad health and he will curse God
  9. God allows satan to tempt Job but he cannot take Job’s life
  10. Job remained faithful – Vs 10

Job’s Friends

  1. The next several chapters deal with Job’s “friends”
  2. chapter 3:11 through end of chapter 38 are an exchange of  conversations
  3. Job’s wife has turned against him – 2:9 – now his “friends”
  4. Job’s friends
  5. the basis of the discourses are that there MUST be some great sin in Job’s life
  6. why else would Job be going through all of this
  7. they accused Job of being a hypocrite – Matthew 7:3-5
  8. they base their arguments on their experience and assumptions
  9. Elihu: chapter 32-37
  10. he speaks to Job – not as a judge – but as a brother
  11. he shares with Job
  12. man has no right to demand explanations from God
  13. God does chastise – but with the purpose of restoration and spiritual healing
  14. Elihu appeals to Job to change his current attitude
  15. accept the suffering with a view of God bringing something good from this
  16. submit to God’s will – allow God to fulfill His plan for Job’s life

VII. The End Result Of Job’s Faithfulness

  1. God’s multiplied blessings
  2. chap. 42:12-13: he received more than he lost
  3. chap. 2. 42:15-17: he had a long, full life

Conclusion: God did not answer Job’s questions concerning his sufferings. The same with us, God does not owe us an explanation. The purpose for God allowing Job’s many sufferings, was to bring Job to the end of self and to trust wholly in God. This was brought about by Job’s submitting to God and repentance: Job 42:1-6. What satan meant for harm /evil – God made something good out of it. Faithfulness pays off in the end – Proverbs 28:20. God blesses, just hang in there, trusting, serving, staying faithful. Don’t blame God for what the devil does. Keep your heart right with God and keep your focus /eyes, on Jesus.