Job: Christ Our Sufficiency
As long as mankind has existed there has been suffering. Because of sin in the world some suffering is understandable. But what about the innocent, the saints. Every year 17,000,000 people starve to death on planet earth. That comes to 60,000 people each day. The vast majority are children. Why do they likewise suffer?
This is a constant question and it deserves an answer. Let us look at Job's saga of suffering and, from it, discern a portrait of patience. This portrait is only discernable when we see the secret of suffering through God's great sovereignty.
God is revealed through four of His Divine names in this book. One of these names provides the key to our understanding of suffering. That name is His Name EL-SHADDAI: "The God who is ENOUGH". He is the Almighty, the All Sufficient One. Of the 84 times this word is in the Scriptures, 43 times they are here in Job!
1. We can relate to suffering
In the loss of loved ones: parents, children, mates, friends, fellow workers
In the loss of needed things: job, marriage, dreams, money, health, home, security
2. We can react to Suffering
Unbiblical = shock, denial, panic, anger, despair, bitterness, resentment
Biblical = accepting, submitting, trusting, growing
3. We can recognize and respond to suffering from one of two perspectives. These show our growth or lack thereof:
Horizontal or human basis of response is characterized by: a strictly selfish desire to be in control so we can be satisfied and pleased with what we have done.
Vertical or Divine basis for our response means we give up our own way for God's and try to see beyond the pain to His greater
Three Lingering Lessons Learned from Job the Seasoned Sufferer:
Pleasing God should be our goal in life not happiness, comfort or satisfaction.
Following God usually entails losing precious possessions and suffering pain for His sake.
Trusting God turns present "losses" into future "gains".
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