“Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?” (Job 1:9)
Satan’s challenge brings up an important question: Why should a person serve God? His question suggests that Job had no real love for God; his righteous behavior was motivated purely by a desire to receive material blessings.
Job’s friend Eliphaz apparently had precisely the outlook on life that Satan wrongly accused Job of. Eliphaz believed God took no pleasure in human righteousness. He believed a person should serve God purely out of self-interest, a desire that God would reward him with material prosperity (Job 22:2-3, 23-30). God has created the world such that wrongful behavior normally leads to unpleasant consequences while upright behavior normally brings good results (Proverbs 12:21). However, Eliphaz was fundamentally wrong; God did take pleasure in Job’s righteousness (Job 1:8; 42:7).
Death and suffering are results of sin (Romans 5:12). The first people God created rebelled against Him and brought death and suffering into the world (Genesis 3). However, suffering is not necessarily occasioned by a specific sin in the life of the sufferer, as Eliphaz and his two friends seemed to believe.
A person who truly loves God will serve Him in good times and bad times. In this sin-cursed world, sometimes wicked people prosper and righteous people suffer, but Job recognized that perfect justice awaits the day when the Creator returns to Earth (Job 19:25-27). This is probably the reason Job maintained his faith even when God allowed Satan to take everything—including his children and his health.
Job often spoke rashly from his pain (Job 6:1-5; 7:11). Yet his declaration of faith in God is a wonderful example for all believers: “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him” (Job 13:15). WP
Days of Praise Podcast is a podcast based on the Institute for Creation Research quarterly print devotional, Days of Praise. Start your day with devotional readings written by Dr. Henry Morris, Dr. Henry Morris III, Dr. John Morris, and others to strengthen and encourage you in your Christian faith.