Job

The book of Job is often misunderstood as it relates to the Christian life.  When reading Job we need to understand what are some of the fundamental differences between Job and a Christian believer.

 

To begin with, Job had no covenant with God.  Job apparently lived before the time of Abraham and did not enjoy the kinds of promises that God had made to Abraham.  For example, God had made a covenant with Abraham and that covenant included protection from his enemies.  (Gen. 15:1)  In Deut. 28:7 we find the promises of God under the law also protected Israel from their enemies.  We find that Job was exposed to his enemies and they quickly took or destroyed everything he had.  In our case, we have a 'better covenant established on better promises,' (Heb. 8:6) and that covenant includes healing and protection!

 

Job also had no knowledge of the devil.  He was not aware that the devil was the 'god of this world,' (2 Cor. 4:4), 'the prince of the power of the air' (Eph. 2:2), the 'thief,' (Jn. 10:10) and that the whole world was under his rule (1 Jn. 5:19, Luke 4:5-6).  Job had very limited knowledge and assumed that his troubles came from God.  He even accused God of afflicting him on various occasions (Job. 6:4).  But we know so much more under the New Covenant.  We know that our fight isn't with God but with 'principalities and powers,' and that we have been given faith in order to quench all the 'fiery darts of the wicked one.' (Eph. 6:12-16)

 

We also see that Job had a very limited knowledge of God.  He himself confesses his ignorance at the end of the book of Job when he says, 'I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear:  but now mine eye seeth thee.......wherefore I.....repent in dust and ashes.' (Job 42:5-6)   A few verses earlier Job had declared, 'I have uttered that I understood not, things ....which I knew not.'  (v.3)   So we are dealing with a man with limited knowledge.  But under the New Covenant we have the maximum revelation of God, greater than the revelation of Abraham, greater than Moses and the Law.  We have Jesus, God in the flesh.  And we see the will of God revealed fully in Jesus when He went about doing good and healing ALL who were oppressed of the devil because God was with Him.  (Acts. 10:38)

 

One of the most important differences between Job and a New Covenant believer is that the believer is a new creation, born again by the Spirit of God!  Job was not born again, nor was anyone in the Bible before the resurrection of Jesus.  Thus, they were limited to their sin nature and sensory knowledge.  God could not relate to Old Testament saints as He can relate to us.  We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus. (Eph. 2:10)  Job was a natural man, with no covenant and limited knowledge.

 

Job also had no weapons with which to fight the enemy.  Since he had no covenant, he was defenseless.  However, we have been given the Name of Jesus, the power of the blood, the filling of the Holy Spirit, the precious promises of God, the armor of God, the gifts of the Spirit, the keys of the Kingdom, the Word of God, the power of faith that can move mountains, the Spirit of power, love and a sound mind, and we have been blessed with all blessings!  We are well equipped to overcome the enemy and any sickness or destructive work that he may attempt to put on us.

 

Job lived in fear.  Fear is the natural state of fallen man.  Faith turned to fear when Adam and Eve sinned. Job worshipped in fear (since he really didn't know who he was worshipping).(Job 3:25)    Fear is the basis for all the religions of the world.  But faith is the foundation of the gospel. 

 

Finally, Job didn't have an intercessor.  The devil had access to God through man's sin.  He could accuse man day and night, and thus he did with Job.  However, Jesus has defeated sin, the devil and death and has sat down at the right hand of God and ever lives to make intercession for us. (Heb. 7:25)  The accuser of the brethren has been cast down and Jesus is now interceding for us!  Job did not have Jesus as his intercessor. (Rev. 12:10)

 

Job was blessed by God because he was a man of integrity, but he was not protected with a covenant.  The accuser had full access to Job.  It could appear that God was giving the devil permission to attack Job because of his (the devil's) provocative comments, but we see in James 1:13 that God cannot be tempted with evil nor does He tempt any man.  So whatever we see happening in the book of Job between God and the devil, we know based on the revelation in James that the devil was not successfully provoking God to test Job or tempt him. 

 

Job is not an example for our Christian experience, nor an example of the covenant we have by the blood of Jesus.  Our covenant includes healing.  Job said, 'the Lord gives and the Lord takes away.' (Job 1:21)  But God didn't say that.  Jesus said, 'I have come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly!'  The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy.'  (Jn. 10:10)