The Book of Job: Gospel Light for Days of Darkness
Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:20-21 ESV)
This Sunday begins a new sermon series in the Book of Job. The series is subtitled, “Gospel Light for Days of Darkness” because this inspired text has helped many believers through the generations find hope when faced with trials of various kinds.
But the Book of Job is not primarily about suffering. Nor is it primarily a character study of a man who persevered through the harshest sufferings. The Book of Job is primarily about God.
When we face suffering, especially unexpected suffering, especially unexpected, life-changing, gut-wrenching suffering, we naturally ask questions like, “Where is God? Why did God allow this? Is God good?”
The Book of Job, perhaps disappointingly, does not directly answer all these questions. But the Book does address them, and the truths we learn about God turn out to be more valuable for us than having all our questions answered.
This Sunday, we’ll consider the first chapter, wherein the Lord allows Satan to test the genuineness of Job’s faith. If anything, Job seems to be a man oriented toward worshiping God. But why? This is Satan’s question, and this will be our question: Why worship God, at all? What’s the point? Do our circumstances dictate whether God should be worshiped? Should God be worshiped only when he rains down material blessings on us?
If you’ve been a Christian for a while, you know the expected answers to those questions. The Book of Job causes us to dig deeper, to resonate with the agony of those who suffer, and to truly examine whether our answers can provide peace for days of darkness.
Thankfully for us as believers in Christ, the light of the gospel resolves much of the darkness brought forth through the questions raised by Job’s suffering. Nonetheless, we, too, will suffer, and what we believe to be true about God is going to be brought to the forefront of our minds in those seasons.
May the Lord use this text and this entire series to cause us to say “Blessed by the name of the Lord” from the heart.