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With New Testament Eyes: 44 - Four Things Learned in Trouble

By Henry Mahan

      Job 1:1-22

      1. Job was greatly troubled, perhaps as few men in this world have been troubled. He had literally lost everything! 1. He was a man of great wealth (v. 3). Suddenly he was a man of complete poverty. Everything he owned was swept away (vv. 14-17).

      2. He was a family man with ten children (v. 2). All of his children were killed in a storm (vv. 18-19). Even his wife turned against him (Job 2:9-10).

      3. He was a man of great influence, with servants and many friends. Suddenly he was the laughing-stock of the city (Job 19:13-19).

      4. He was a man of strength and good health. Now he was so frail and covered with boils that even his friends could scarcely recognize him (Job 2:7-8, 12).

      Job did not try to hide his sorrow. He wept before God. God's people are people with tender feelings; and when they are called upon to bear the rod, they feel it! God takes away our heart of stone: He does not turn the heart to stone. We sorrow, indeed, but not as those who have no hope.

      Job's sorrow was sanctified by worship (vv. 20-22). Sorrow and trouble should always lead to worship and praise. In all of this trouble, trial, and sorrow, Job did not speak in an unworthy manner against God. He did not dishonor the name of God nor compare his lot with the lot of others. He fell down and worshipped God (Job 2:10; 13:15). If grief presses you to the ground, worship there. If trials lay you low, worship there (Psalm 62:8).

      Times of trial should not only be times of worship, but also a time for teaching and consideration. Listen to David talk to himself in the time of trouble (Psalm 42:5-11). Job, by his words, reveals to us that he was a man of faith, well taught in the things of God. Four things are seen.

      1. He knew the brevity of life

      'Naked I came into the world and naked I shall return.' This was Job's idea of life and a very true one. 'I came and I shall return' (Job 14:1-5). Our life on earth is in the scripture compared to a flower (Job 14:2), a VAPOR (James 4:14), a weaver's shuttle (Job 7:6), a POST (Job 9:25--a post is an outpost on a mail delivery where the rider changes horses). Not only in time of sorrow, but at all times we need to consider the brevity of life on earth and the length of life to come and find our joy and hope in our Redeemer (Job 19:23-27; Phil. 1:20-24).

      2. He knew the frailty of earthly possessions

      The word is 'naked.' When a baby is born into this world, what does he possess? He possesses nothing; he comes into the world naked! When a man dies, what does he possess? What does he take with him? He leaves the world naked! The Lord teaches Job (and those who will learn by his example) the frailty and vanity of all that we have in our hands and all that we call our own. Actually, we brought nothing into this world and we will carry nothing out (1 Tim. 6:7). However, we can leave this world differently from the way we came. We were born sinners (Psalm 51:5; Psalm 58:3). By God's grace and mercy, through faith in Christ Jesus, we can leave justified, redeemed, and free from sin (Acts 13:38-39; John 3:14-16). Without Christ we shall die as we were born--lost sinners!

      3. He saw the hand of God in all things

      'The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away.' Many people reading this portion of scripture would say that Satan afflicted Job and took away all that he possessed, but Job (like every true believer) knew that the Lord is the first cause of all things.

      Satan and other second causes can only do what God is pleased to permit them to do (1 Sam. 2:6-8; Acts 4:27-28; Isa. 46:9-11).

      'The Lord gave.' Job did not say, 'I earned these things; I deserve them, for they are the products of my hard work.' No! He said all that I have is the gift of God. 'A man can receive nothing except it be given him from heaven' (John 3:27; 1 Cor. 4:7). All that I have physically, mentally, materially, and spiritually are the gifts of God. Even repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ are the gifts of God (Rom. 2:4; Acts 11:18; Eph. 2:8-9; Phil. 1:29).

      'The Lord hath taken a way.' Job saw the hand of God in all that was taken. He did not curse the Sabeans, the wicked Chaldeans, and blame the wind. He knew that the Lord God controlled all these things and that the Lord God had willed it or it would not have happened (Rom. 8:28). Aaron held his peace when his sons were killed, for he knew the Lord had done it (Lev. 10:1-3; 1 Sam. 3:18; Psalm 39:9).

      4. He declared that in all things, at all times, God is to be praised

      'Blessed be the name of the Lord.' To be able to praise God equally in the valley of trial as on the mountain of joy ought to be the desire of every believer (1 Cor. 16:13-14). Paul sounds this note in I Thess. 5:18. 'In everything, loss or gain, sickness or health, success or failure, summer or winter, life or death, give thanks! For this (whatever it be if you are in Christ) is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.'

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See Also:
   Foreward & Acknowledgements
   1 - The Fall
   2 - Abel's Offering
   3 - The Ark Of Noah
   4 - Sarah and Hagar; Law and Grace
   5 - The Lord Will Provide
   6 - A Bride for the Heir
   7 - Bethel - The House of God
   8 - Peniel - The Face of God
   9 - Joseph Opens the Storehouses
   10 - Joseph and His Brothers
   11 - Shiloh
   12 - The Passover
   13 - The Manna
   14 - Water from the rock
   15 - The Blood Before the Lord
   16 - The Ram of Consecration
   17 - The Day of Atonement
   18 - Caleb - The Faithful Dog
   19 - The High Priest Intercedes
   20 - The Brazen Serpent
   21 - A Prophet Like Moses
   22 - The Cities of Refuge
   23 - Joshua
   24 - The Scarlet Line in the Window
   25 - The birth of Samson
   26 - The Kinsman Redeemer
   27 - The Song of Hannah
   28 - Give us a King
   29 - Saul's Great Sin
   30 - David and Mephibosheth
   31 - Why God Permitted David to Fall
   32 - Comfort from God's Covenant
   33 - I Will Not Offer to God that which Cost me Nothing
   34 - The Queen of Sheba Comes to Solomon
   35 - Three Examples of Faith
   36 - Where is the Lord God of Elijah?
   37 - Empty Vessels Filled
   38 - Naaman, the Leper
   39 - Open his Eyes that He may See
   40 - Four Lepers Teach us a Lesson
   41 - Nehushtan--A Piece of Brass
   42 - Bringing Back the Ark
   43 - Uzziah's Great Transgression
   44 - Four Things Learned in Trouble
   45 - How Can Man be Just With God?
   46 - Three Vital Questions
   47 - I Know that my Redeemer Liveth
   48 - Now Mine Eye Seeth Thee
   49 - The Psalm of Messiah the King
   50 - God's two great books
   51 - The Psalm of the Cross
   52 - The Lord is my Shepherd
   53 - True God - True Israel - True Redeemer
   54 - Eight Great Precepts
   55 - My Hope is in Thee
   56 - Many, O Lord, Are Thy Wonderful Works
   57 - A Song of Love
   58 - The Sinner's Prayer
   59 - My Rock and my Salvation
   60 - Our Lord's Sufferings for Our Sins
   61 - Mercy and Truth are Met Together
   62 - The Victory of the Messiah
   63 - Bless the Lord, O my Soul
   64 - Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So
   65 - The King-Priest
   66 - The Chief Cornerstone
   67 - The Observer and the Observed
   68 - Praise the Lord O my Soul
   69 - Wisdom in Christ
   70 - The Conclusion of the Whole Matter
   71 - Remember Now Thy Creator
   72 - My Beloved is Mine and I am His
   73 - What is Thy Beloved more than Another Beloved?
   74 - The Lord Our Righteousness
   75 - The Believers Hope
   76 - From Nothing to Everything
   77 - Lost, Driven Away, Broken, Sick
   78 - Can These Bones Live?
   79 - Four Things God Taught Nebuchadnezzar
   80 - Thy God Will Deliver Thee
   81 - Hosea--Type of Christ
   82 - A Famine to be Feared
   83 - Salvation is of the Lord
   84 - A Fountain Opened for Mourners
   85 - The Messenger of the Covenant


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