Job the Long-Suffering
Job was a blameless man who “feared God and shunned evil” (Job 1:1). So righteous was he, that there was “none like him on the earth” (Job 1:8). But Satan argued that Job was faithful only because God had blessed him with much wealth and health and ten children. Thus God allowed Job to be tested and in a single day he looses all of his children, his servants and his livestock. Yet instead of cursing God (which is what Satan wanted), he fell down upon the ground and worshiped God saying, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there; the Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord”. (Job 1:21).
It must be stated here that as we read this book, we realise that God allows misfortunes not just to sinners in order to coerce them to repentance, but even to the righteous for an even greater confirmation in righteousness, but He never sends a greater temptation than we can handle and always provides a way out (1 Cor 10:13).
Having put the evil one to shame, and while he was too proud to admit defeat, Satan asks God to allow him to also take away Job’s health and reputation. Knowing well the spiritual state of His servant, God allowed this also and Job broke out with boils and sores all over his body. Showing superhuman integrity and a firm faith in God, Job answers again saying, “Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?” (Job 2:10). He continues to pray humbly and patiently enduring all of his misfortune until finally God appears and justifies him, blesses him with twice as much wealth as before and grants him ten more children and a long life.
From all this we can see that strong faith in God gave Job clear spiritual sight to see the hand of God in times of prosperity as well as in poverty, helping him to acquire great patience in suffering despite the unexplainable and difficult path he had to endure.
Source: April– May 2014 Lychnos Edition