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Disaster Strikes (1 of 5)
This is the Word of God.
This morning, I would like us to begin thinking together about suffering. Doesn't that sound like fun? It's not, really. But it's tremendously important and relevant and personal and emotional, and I think God is going to use these five weeks in more ways than we know. So from these first two chapters of Job, I want to talk about three things today: The Problem of Suffering, The Power of Suffering, and The Partnership of Suffering. Okay? The problem, the power, and the partnership of suffering.
So first, let's talk about The Problem of Suffering. Job is a fascinating character. He lived probably around the time of Abraham-around 2,000 BC. And when you start reading the book of Job, it becomes obvious that his life was going extremely well. He was extremely prosperous: he had 7,000 sheep and 3,000 camels, etc.; a huge staff of servants. He'd been blessed with ten kids-seven sons and three daughters. He was hugely respected in his community. Job was a very blessed man.
But even more importantly for this story, Job was a good man. The very first thing it says about him-in verse 1: he was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil. That Hebrew phrase ''blameless and upright'' doesn't mean he was a perfect man, but he was a really good guy. So he conducted his business with integrity; he treated his servants well; there were no women accusing him of sexual harassment; he was a really good dad. And besides that, he had a deep sense of reverence for God. So on multiple levels, Job was a good man. And frankly, that's what makes the rest of the story so hard to read.
So...after we get introduced to Job, that's when things get weird. Because the scene shifts to heaven, where there's sort of a staff meeting between God and his angels. And somehow, the fallen angel, Satan, slips into the meeting. God holds up Job as an example of a good and godly man, an ...
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