03694_000_024(See Job 1–42.)
In the land of Uz lived a faithful and obedient man named Job. Job had been greatly blessed by the Lord. He had seven sons and three daughters, whom he loved very much. He owned seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yokes of oxen, five hundred donkeys, and a great deal of property.
Job was grateful to God for all the blessings that he had received, and he worshiped God.
Satan was displeased because Job was so obedient and humble. So Satan complained to God, saying that Job was only righteous because he was so rich. If his riches were taken away, Satan argued, Job would quickly deny God. Then Satan challenged, “But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that [Job] hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.”
Because of His faith in Job, the Lord allowed Satan to test Job. Everything Job had, including his children, the Lord would allow Satan to destroy, but he was not to physically harm Job. Satan agreed.
One day a messenger came to Job and reported that all his oxen and donkeys had been stolen and that his servants had been killed. A second messenger immediately followed the first, carrying the news that Job’s sheep and shepherds had been struck by lightning. While Job was still speaking to the second messenger, a third arrived and said that Job’s camels had all been stolen and their caretakers killed.
Finally, a fourth messenger arrived and told Job that all his children had been killed when a wind blew down the house of Job’s oldest son while all Job’s children were inside.
Heartbroken, Job tore his clothing and shaved his head, as was the custom then, to show his great sorrow. But despite his grief, Job did not blame God. Instead, he continued to worship Him, saying, “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”
Job’s faithfulness angered Satan. He now claimed that if Job were to suffer physically, he would deny God. But the Lord still had faith in Job. He allowed Satan to afflict Job with pain and suffering, but not death.
Satan caused boils to break out all over Job’s body, and they pained him continually. His friends told Job that he must have sinned terribly, or such a punishment would never have been sent from heaven. Even Job’s wife told him to curse God and die. But Job knew that he had been obedient, and he would not deny God. He held fast to his faith and said, “I know that my redeemer liveth, …
“And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God.”
The Lord was very pleased with Job’s faithfulness. He healed his sores and blessed him with another seven sons and three daughters and with twice as many animals as he had previously owned.