Job 1: The Man Who Put The Devil To Shame
In Job 1:9, the devil is for the first time seen accusing anyone in the history of humanity. The accused guy is a healthy, wealthy, holy man called Job.
3 Claims of the Devil:
1. Anyone can fear God if God becomes their protector
2. Anyone can fear God if God becomes their prosperor
3. Anyone will curse God if God withdraws His protection and prosperity
The Devil is happy as long as we fear God for something: for healing, for blessing, for good friends, for things going on well, even for salvation... However, the Devil is distraught the moment he sees that we fear God for "nothing" related to us, but everything related to God, even for intense suffering. This the Devil can't bear, for it contradicts his nature; he is thoroughly wicked and he can't believe anyone is capable of being good, of truly fearing God.
Job is the story of how God stripped Job of everything he had, ultimately even his health; and, yet he held on to his faith in God. It may not have been faith in the sense that comfort-zone Christians know about. Job's faith went through intense tensions and pressures that are not very normal to humans in general. So, we may expect his faith to do things that we usually may not approve. But, that was the kind of faith that God was looking for; the faith that could be bent, but not broken; that could be heated up, but not melted, that could be battered, but not crushed. When Job's faith came out pure as gold, the devil's face so pale, he disappeared from Job's book. Job was the man who bashed the devil.
"But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!" (Job 1:11)
How often it is okay for us as long as God doesn't touch what "we have"? We distinguish between what belongs to (or is donated to) God and what belongs to us. We may not bother to give God our tithes (and feel happy about keeping the letter of the law); however, if God touches the 90% that we keep for ourselves, worship becomes difficult. It is like a child who receives gifts from his parents; but, he will not tolerate that they touch that gift after they had given it to him. Or it is like a dog, that moves about wagging its tail as long as the Master gives food, but turns aggressive the moment he touches the bone in its mouth. Job reminds us that what we got from God is still God's; He has power to turn these even into the hands of Satan: "all that he has is in your power" (Job 1:12). But, Satan could not break Job's faith. When in a moment's time, he lost all that he had, he fell to the ground and worshiped God saying "Naked I came from my mother's womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD." Jesus said that it is hard for the rich who trust in their riches to enter into heaven. Job was rich. He had 7000 sheep, 3000 camels, 500 teams of oxen, and many servants. Yet, Job was not someone who trusted in his riches; his trust was on God.