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Job 1:6-12 ESV

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. The Lord said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.

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Some people read this part of the story and think God’s wager with Satan was a little unfair. It certainly was! No weapon formed against His children shall prosper and when the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD will raise up a standard against him.

The popular myth is that Satan rules from hell, and God can barely keep him from ruining His creation. The truth is that hell is the devil’s doom, not his kingdom.

We can see from this passage that even though Satan is God’s adversary, God is still in control. Satan regularly has to report his comings and goings, just like all the other angels. The prince of demons had to get permission to attack Job, and even then he had clearly defined limits. Satan was only allowed to afflict Job according to God’s rules.

God was not worried about Job. We tend to focus on Job’s unjust suffering, but God had a greater purpose. Satan had pain planned for Job, but God had a double blessing in store. He was actually giving Job an opportunity to have the victory over Satan. Job endured hardness like a good soldier, but more importantly Satan was defeated, as we shall see.

God believed in Job because Job believed in God.

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