Suffering is Your Opportunity to Show Your Quality (Part5)

Pick of the Litter (Job 1)

“There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” v.1

The meaning of the word Uz is “counsel” and the name of Job means “the cry of woe”. It may very well be that the counsel of his wife and so-called friends are the source of his cry of woe. I want to share with you that the place of honor is often a place of aloneness and separation from others but that will come in a later message. For now lets look at how Job came into his famous predicament.

“That man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” The word eschew is an interesting word. It means to deliberately avoid and abstain from. Well, doesn’t everybody deliberately avoid and abstain from evil? Apparently not, very decidedly not. In fact very few eschew evil. Evil is sold in this world in every marketplace and the prices keep going up because of the enormous demand for it. Just look at how the most popular products glorify evil and sin. (Hint check the logos and themes related to death, anarchy, and destruction).

So how did all this singling out come about that Job found himself in the cross-hairs of Satan? “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.” v.6 For the record there is a difference between the devil and Satan which you should understand. According to Gen. 3:1-5 man is responsible for the introduction of Satan. He came into the world as a result of a conversation between man and the devil.

Satan is the counterfeit of the Holy Spirit. Man was never intended to listen to the voice of the devil but the voice of God by his Spirit to our spirit. When man decidedly sought for another voice of authority in the earth, Satan entered. He is the result of man’s desire and will to organize and live his life apart from God and His Word.

(This reminds me of the movie Shrek where he is looking for someone to accompany him to rescue the princess. He asks is anyone wants to go with him and there among the people is Donkey bouncing about 4 heads higher than all the rest of the crowd enthusiastically shouting “Pick me!, pick me!” to which Shrek replies, “Is there anyone else who wants to go?” God has sent His Holy Spirit to accompany us on our treacherous journey and yet so many are asking, “Is there anyone else who wants to go with me?” looking for other options.)

Satan is the voice of that other option to the revealed will of God. And we too often seek it out, wanting to serve and do our will, not His. He (Satan) is the voice and power behind every rebellious act.

Consider these facts regarding the person of Satan. Only once did our Lord address the devil as Satan. “Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written…” Matt. 4:10. Notice that Satan was trying to get Jesus to listen to a voice of Self-service, to execute an independent plan. On another occasion Jesus labeled Peter’s self-pity (inordinate thinking about Self) as satanic.“But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” Matt. 16:3.

I like what Oswald Chambers says about this “other” option: “When a man is born from above he has granted to him the disposition of Jesus, Holy Spirit, and if he obeys he will develop into the new manhood in Christ Jesus. If by deliberate refusal a man is not born again he is liable to find himself developing more and more into the satanic, which will ultimately head up into the devil.”

My will, is not my will but submission to the satanic charge to take control of my own destiny, to distrust
God, forsake Him and set an independent course based on natural reasoning and desire. This is why we must deny ourselves and seek His will. Every choice you make is an exposure of what is in your heart. You have a free will for that reason – that it might be known to whom you belong.

And here is Satan doing what he does best, accusing the brethren before God (thank God we have an Advocate that ever-intercedeth for us), “Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?” v.9

Satan zoomed right in on God’s choice man, the pick of the litter. God was boasting about his son Job to a roaring lion who was going about to see whom he might devour. “And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” v.7 And you think that God would protect his prized son from the fight, right? No way! God created Job to enter the arena, to show forth His son.

What is the point of creating a son if not for their manifestation before the world? It is working out what God has worked in. It is a demonstration of faith, trust, dependence and love in and for the Father to His glory.

The devil is not the only one looking throughout the earth. The Father is looking too. “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.” 2 Chron. 16:9. God is looking for the pick of the litter. And our life should be jumping up and down and stating, “Pick me!, pick me!”. Trust me, you don’t have to jump though, God knows a pick of the litter when He sees one.

“But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.  If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.” 1 Peter 4:12-14

Suffering is your opportunity to show your quality.