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The Sufferings of Job
For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God!
The Book of Job is foundational to our understanding of Salvation.
In the book of Job, we see Satan challenged by God regarding the righteousness of Job. This is profound. Jehovah God, facing Satan, and asking if he, Satan, had considered Job, that he (Job) was perfect and upright. God said that Job feared God and shunned evil. In this earliest Book we see the power of the Gospel overcoming all the power of the Enemy to defeat Job.
This was not light conversation.
In Genesis 3 we see the Lord stating that the serpent, Satan, would be defeated by the Seed of the Woman which was a prophetic reference to Jesus Christ. The head of the serpent would be crushed by Jesus Christ. In the life of Job this victory is showcased. Job's victory over sin is presented and recorded, that all creation might see the blood of Christ redeems from sin. So God challenged Satan. Have you considered my servant Job? God chose the topic and centered the challenge on Job's righteousness. One has to realize, if Job fails, God loses! If God fails then He is no longer God. This challenge is a strong statement by God on the topic of assurance. God's challenge could not be based on man's ability to be righteous, but on the work of Christ to make a man righteous! Satan's response was predictable, he accused Job of serving God because God had blessed him, denying real love as the motivation of Job's faithfulness to God.
The Reality of Righteousness!
The reality of righteousness shows the power of the Gospel. We must remember that Satan had tempted Eve to sin, and then Adam also sinned. Through this sinful act, sin passed on the entire human race, and death through sin, Rom 5:12. Adam represented the entire human race and we all prove Adam to be our perfect representative, for we begin sinning as soon as we are intellectually and morally able. For this reason sin was imputed to the entire human race, and all bore the curse of sin. From that point forward, the entire human race, every single person, would forever bear the stain of sin. It was in this context that God stated that Job was righteous! No wonder Satan says righteousness is not real. It cannot be real, for after all, God Himself, had placed the entire human race under sin.
A Good Question
The question is real, how can God say a man is righteous, considering he is born a sinner? Satan is actually accusing God of unrighteousness. Satan' goal is to defeat God through Job. If God arbitrarily declares man to be righteous, when, in fact, he is unrighteous, then Satan is right because man is not really righteous. Also, if Job is actually unrighteous then God is unrighteous for saying Job was righteous.
The problem was that Satan did not understand the Gospel. The Gospel is about redemption. God purchasing, by blood, the souls of men from the curse of sin to righteousness. For God to say Job was righteous a redemption had to have taken place. Otherwise, Job would have still been bound to the curse of sin. But he wasn't bound in sin for God said He was rigthteousness!
The completed work of Christ not only removes the guilt and penalty of sin, but imputes righteousness to us and reconciles us to God. We are joined to Christ who empowers us to live a good life. We are told in Rom 6:10-11, the resurrection makes us dead to sin and alive to God. The answer is yes, unequivocally yes, eternally yes, the gospel is real, righteousness is real and through the the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, sinful man can indeed be made righteous!
The Power Of The Blood
What do we know about Job? We know he was offering blood sacrifices for his sins and the sins of his family.
Job 1:5 (NKJV) 5 So it was, when the days of feasting had run their course, that Job would send and sanctify them, and he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, “It may be that my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did regularly
The scripture tells us that Jesus Christ was slain from the foundation of the world, Rev 13:8. This means that God treated man graciously and with mercy, from the beginning of time, for He looked forward to the cross. The single reason for any gracious act by God, at any time, before or after the cross, was the death of Jesus Christ. We see God, providing atonement and forgiveness to Adam and Eve for their sin. They attempted to cover their own nakedness but God, provided His own Atonement, but shedding blood and clothing Adam and Eve with the skins of an animal. This is an example of God looking forward to the cross and showing mercy to man's disobedience.
A Type or Picture of Christ
So, we see Job offering sacrifices. From this we know that Job, by faith, offered sacrifices to God for sin, and God, looking forward to Christ, forgave Job and justified him!
We know that job was justified for God called him righteous. Herein, we see the work of Christ. Christ not only provides atonement for sin, but also makes righteous. There is an inward work of Christ that results in Godly behavior. We see this in Job.
Back to the challenge. God was saying by His challenge to Satan, that Christ had overcome sin, that the work of the cross would result freedom from the bondage to sin, which freedom, even the Devil himself could not overcome! God bet the farm on this one and He won!!
Through Job, God Proves Righteousness To Be Real
The reality of righteousness was proved by the Lord with Job's testing. If Job's righteousness was real through blood atonement, then we know that through Christ, our righteousness will be real also.
The Devil, even after being shown that righteousness is indeed real, continues to denigrate the effects of the Gospel by accusing God's people, day and night, of not really loving God and of not really being righteous. But we, as the redeemed of the Lord, trust in the blood of Christ to atone for sin, and to make us right with God.
1 Corinthians 1:30-31 (NLT) 30 God alone made it possible for you to be in Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made Christ to be wisdom itself. He is the one who made us acceptable to God. He made us pure and holy, and he gave himself to purchase our freedom. 31 As the Scriptures say, “The person who wishes to boast should boast only of what the Lord has done.”
Thank you Lord Jesus.
God bless you,