“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians NIV).
Friend to Friend
Yesterday we looked at the tough concept of God’s discipline. But there is another possibility for the calamity that occurs in our lives. It could be an attack of the enemy…Satan. We have a very vivid picture of how he attacks in the book of Job.
One day the angels came before the LORD, and Satan tagged along.
“Where have you come from?” God asked
“From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.”
“Then God said to Satan, “Did you see my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
“Of course he does,” sneered Satan. “Look at all you’ve done for him. You’ve blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land, given him a large family, and land as far as the eye can see. But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
God gave Satan permission to strike Job in every possible way, except to take his life. Job lost everything, except his contentious wife, and yet he never knew what (or who) hit him. He never understood why. Through it all, Job did not curse the Lord, but trusted in His sovereign hand.
Oh how I love the way this story ends. Satan loses. God wins. Job is blessed. “The LORD made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before” (Job 42:10). The story ends with Job saying; “My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you” (Job 42:5 NIV). I just love it when Satan attacks us and we end up with a greater understanding of the power of God!
There is a war going on…a war we cannot see with our eyes, but sense with our spirits. Paul warns us that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm.” This war is not fought with hand-to-hand combat, but with spirit-to-spirit prayer. “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
Satan is not someone to be feared. James tells us, “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). And be assured of this, girlfriend, “Greater is the one (Jesus) who is in you than the one (Satan) who is in the world” (1 John 4:4 NIV).
Dear Lord, it certainly is hard reading all that happened to poor Job. But what a wonderful ending to a tragic story! I pray that when I come against difficulties in my life that I will continue to praise You as Job did. Naked I came into this world and naked I will return. Help me to accept the good with the bad and never cease to praise Your name. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Now it's Your Turn
Have you ever read the story of Job and thought, “That’s not fair?” Be honest…God knows anyway.
Have you ever felt like you were having a Job moment in your life? If so, what was it?
Today, ponder how Job handled his tragic situation and pray for the strength to do the same.
For more on today’s topic see Your Scars are Beautiful to God- Discovering peace and purpose in the hurts of your past by Sharon Jaynes.
Girlfriends in God, Inc.
Originally published Tuesday, 14 November 2006.