the Lord Need to Bribe You?
Andrew Giles ~ Bowens Mill Convention 2005
would like you to turn with me to the Book of Job chapter 1.
have just returned from Africa, and I would like to take this opportunity
to thank all of you who pray for us who travel because I am certainly
very conscious when I am in those places how much I am in need of
your prayer, and how much difference it makes. It would be wrong
for me not to say thank you to all of you who hold us up before
the Lord in prayer. I do not think we always know what the Lord
keeps us from. There are dangers that are around and we don’t always
get to observe them. Every now and again He just lets us see a little
bit of what we are being kept from, but we don’t know how much difference
the prayer makes in terms of our safety and also in regards to the
flow and anointing. I am just convinced that your prayer is significantly
impacting when we make those journeys, and I want to thank you and
to encourage you not to stop.
read a few verses here from Job chapter 1. If you look in the commentaries,
you will find that they are all a little uncertain about this, but
it is possible that Job lived about the same time as Abraham; some
people think maybe this book was written by Moses who would have
been about 500 years later, but nobody quite knows. It’s one of
the older books of the OT so, although it is found somewhere near
the middle, we are going back a good 4,000 years or so in history
as we read this story. I think that we will find as we read it together
that it’s not out of date, 4,000 years later or 3,500 years later
we’re not sure, but it’s very, very current.
1:1-12 ‘There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and
that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed
evil. And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters.
His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand
camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses,
and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of
all the men of the east. And his sons went and feasted in their
houses, everyone his day; and sent and called for their three sisters
to eat and to drink with them. And it was so, when the days of their
feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and
rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according
to the number of them all: for Job said, “It may be that my sons
have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus did Job continually.
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves
before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. And the Lord said
unto Satan, “Whence comest thou?” Then Satan answered the Lord and
said, “From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and
down in it.” And the Lord said unto Satan, “Hast thou considered
my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect
and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” Then
Satan answered the Lord, and said, “Doth Job fear God for naught?
Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and
about all that he hath on every side? Thou hast blessed the work
of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. But put
forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse
thee to thy face.” And the Lord said unto Satan, “Behold, all that
he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand.”
So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.’
become convinced, increasingly convinced through the years that
the Bible is for me. It’s not really a story book that tells history,
or poetry, or even the story of Israel to us; it’s about us. It’s
for us. That doesn’t mean I understand it all yet; there’s much
in here I don’t understand, but I am convinced this is God’s word
to me. So when I read a story like this, there is something inside
me that inquires and says, “God, what have you in this for me?”
I was intrigued as I read this story as to how it related to my
I first of all want to show you 5 points from the early part of
the book of Job and when I have shown you these 5 things, maybe
we can identify who this character Job is really a picture of, because
I believe he is a type and a shadow. So let’s see if we can get
some pieces of evidence here and when we’ve drawn the evidence together,
maybe we can come to a conclusion as to who Job represents. I believe
there is something here for us in 2005, so we need to actually identify
who he might be.
First of all, if you were to get your concordance and look up the
meaning of the name Job, you would find his name means ‘hated or
persecuted’. I sometimes wonder in my own heart what must have been
in the minds of parents when they named their children in those
days, but I do believe that this is there so we can understand who
this man Job represents. Do you remember when Jesus was talking
to his disciples, He said to them, “You will be hated of all men
for My name’s sake.” Sister Marie was telling us yesterday that
the Apostle Paul said, “We are persecuted, but not forsaken.” Job’s
name means ‘hated and persecuted’. There’s our first piece
The Lord says of him, “He had an upright heart, he feared God,
he eschewed – departed from - evil.” He was a man who I believe
had a walk with God. He had been brought into a relationship with
God, a relationship that he savored, that he valued, that he desired
to continue. He wanted to walk with God – he did walk with God.
A second piece of evidence.
The third piece of evidence is there in verse 5. He had
awareness that a relationship with God was dependant on sacrifice,
and the way in which sin was dealt with was by sacrifice. He
said, “It may be that my children have sinned, and if they have
sinned, the way it has to be dealt with is by sacrifice.” So every
morning he would offer a morning sacrifice, in case his children
had sinned. The morning sacrifice is, as you perhaps know anyway,
represents the Lord Jesus Christ. So here was a man who had
an understanding that sin was dealt with by the morning sacrifice.
Here’s the fourth piece of evidence. The Lord says of Job, “There
is none like him in all the earth.” Do you know what God says
about a company of His people? Do you know how much He loves them?
He talks about Israel as the apple of His eye. He says such things
regarding you and me showing the extent of His devotion to us; in
other words, His desire is that we should complete this race. He
has invested Himself so that we might have an expected end and a
certain end. He has given Himself to this particular project that
we call salvation. Not just the salvation that we have experienced,
but He has given Himself that we might be those who experience eternal
salvation. He has done things for us that He hasn’t done for other
people in this world. He has set His heart and His love upon us
in a way that He has not done to others. He has been faithful to
us in a way that He has not been to others, because He is saying,
“This is My people – there’s none like them in all the earth.”
recently did a study on the love of God and I found that the Bible,
without question, concerning people like us—concerning those who
are saved—declares that God loved us. He demonstrated that
love in a way that makes it indisputable that He loved us, because
He did it by giving His son for us.
Apostle Paul, as he’s writing one of his letters, I think it’s to
the Colossians – if you were writing a letter to someone and you
were writing about the love of God, you would probably say, “The
Son of God who loved us and gave Himself for us,” but the Apostle
Paul is so excited by the love of God, he says, “The Son of God
who loved me !”—and he couldn’t get over it! I wouldn’t
write a letter that way – I’d say, “The Son of God who
loved us !” The Apostle Paul was so taken up with the fact
that God has treated him in a way he didn’t deserve,
he said, “The Son of God who loved me and gave himself
for me .”
as I studied this out, I found that the truth of the love of God
is declared again and again in scripture. He has demonstrated it!
as I observed this, and held this before the Lord, I found that
every one of the scriptures about the love of God to us that I have
so far found is in the past tense. And when it comes to
the security of continuing in the love of God and how He will
love us, I found that then, it was expressed in a quite
Buddy was in the scripture, in the Elder’s time, in John 15 – let’s
put a bookmark here and turn to this. When I started to look at
the change in tense, and was considering the place of the continuing
love of God in the future, I found that which was so certain and
aptly demonstrated in the past became spoken of quite differently
with regards to its future continuation.
15: 9-10 ‘As the father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue
[the word is used again in the next verse; it’s translated
‘abide’—it’s the same word] continue [or
abide] ye in my love. [We’re getting into
the present tense now] If ye keep my
commandments [you shall continue] you
shall abide [the future of the love of God
is dependent on obedience – the past love of God has been demonstrated
to us and there’s not one person in this room that can question
it. He loved us and He gave Himself for us, but the future continuation
in the love of God – what does it say here? He said,] If
ye keep my commandments you shall abide [or
continue] in my love .
then something else—I have read this so many times but it must have
just slipped past me—Jesus said, “That’s exactly the position that
I am in as well.” He said, “The Father’s love to me continues on
exactly the same basis as yours does.
said, “Even as I have kept My Father’s commandments and
abide in His love.” No different for you;
no different for Him. If we are going to continue to experience
the incredible blessing of the love of God, it requires our obedience.
I am really saying is, ‘There is none like you in all the earth!’
There’s no other people that God has given so much to as us! He
has come and He has moved upon us with salvation; He’s come and
moved upon us and stirred our hearts in repentance, when we were
far off; when we were sinners Christ died for us. We were dead in
trespasses and sins!
have noticed that I don’t respond with action and emotion and passion
every time that I hear that somebody has died. Now when my Father
died, I responded to that event with emotion – but none of you
did. Why was that? Because I loved him – and you didn’t know
him. A thousand people recently died in New Orleans and I didn’t
cry for any of them. I wasn’t moved to do anything about it. Maybe
some of you knew some of them; maybe it was different for you, but
the thing that moves us when somebody has died, the thing that makes
our behavior change, the thing that makes us emotional or responsive,
is primarily that there is a love – there is a love relationship.
we were dead in trespasses and sins, God, for His great love, wherewith
He loved us, sent His son and He did something about it. The demonstration
was that God had a love relationship with us, even when we were
dead, for He would not have moved otherwise. I do not move; I am
not moved by every death that there is, but God was moved even while
we were dead in trespasses and sins – so great was His love. There
is none like us in all the world!
Job had an anticipation of the resurrection of the dead. Wow!
He said, “I know my redeemer lives” – and he also said, “I know
that though worms destroy this body, in my flesh shall I see God.”
He had an anticipation of the resurrection.
right now; all I am trying to do here is establish who Job represents.
Let’s run through that again.
His name means “hated and persecuted”. 2) He had a real walk with
God; an upright heart. 3) He knew that relationship with God was
dependent upon sacrifice. 4) God said, “There’s none like him in
all the earth.” And 5) he had an anticipation and expectation of
you think he actually might represent “us”? Do you think God wants
to raise up a “Job Company” ? A company that the
people of this world will look on and say, “They’re nothing.” They’ll
hate them; they’ll despise them; they’ll be a reproach to whom God
says, “There’s none like them.” Do you think that people could be
here today? It might be so. I think Job is a picture of some part,
at least, of the church of Jesus Christ.
this is important to remember that as you read this book, because
otherwise it is just 3,500 – 4,000 year old history, but it’s talking
about us, Saints. This is for us. In just a moment, after we have
read these first 5 verses, we will be transported up into a heavenly
debate. We will get an insight into something that I am not absolutely
sure that Job ever knew. There’s no explanation given to Job at
the end of the book of what we have here in the very first scene.
At the end of it, I don’t know if he ever knows what’s gone on.
But we are given an explanation of the book from the very beginning.
if you were to ask many people ‘What’s the theme of the book of
Job?’ I think they’d commonly agree that the theme is ‘suffering’.
The Bible establishes many different purposes and reasons why people
think God permits people to experience affliction to get their attention.
Have you ever noticed how you pray a bit more when you are in suffering?
God gets your attention, doesn’t He? I think it’s to purge out faults.
The Psalmist said, “Before I was afflicted, I went astray.” It does
a work there. “But now I have kept Thy word,” he says, “The affliction
brought me back.”
also to build character. In Hebrews 12, it talks about how God is
faithful in dealing with us as a father deals with his sons, otherwise
we would be bastards, and He says the ultimate purpose in this is
that we might be partakers of His holiness. So He chastises us.
And sometimes that chastisement, the tool, is suffering and affliction.
He wants us to manifest the life of Christ. He knows things have
to happen for that to be done. The easy, cushy life is not going
to bring forth the life of Christ that needs to be seen and so there
book tells us there is yet another reason, and I think it is a neglected
reason. We were praying for Sister Darla this morning so it is obvious
that we have people in our midst who have been and are going through
incredible things. I thought, as I read the recent email from Tony
about Sister Joyce – and it’s wonderful that she’s here today and
looking so good—but when I read those emails, I thought, “How much
more does a person have to go through?” There is a purpose to suffering
that often slips past us unnoticed and it’s because it’s an expression
of what is taking place in the heavenly realms, and the purpose
of it is to settle an argument between Satan and God.
goes into the presence of the Lord, and God says, “Look Satan, look
at my servant Job.” And Satan says, (after God has given a bit of
explanation and amplified it) “Does Job fear God for naught?”
That’s a very significant question.
what Satan is saying is, “God, you can only get people to love you,
fear you and serve you by bribing them.” That’s what he’s saying.
“You have to pour out all these material blessings, all this strength,
all this health, all this prosperity, and all this money. God, when
you do that, of course they love you. But try it this way God –
just suppose you were to take it away; they would curse you to your
face.” How would you resolve that argument? You would put it to
significant, for if it were so that God can only get people to love
Him by bribing them, the sin nature has never been dealt with.
If the only reason people serve God is for what they can get
for themselves, and since we had that nature before we came to God,
then it follows that nobody would ever be cleansed of the sin nature,
so the work of Jesus would have been to no avail…..that is if Satan
is right. And that would mean that Satan has corrupted the human
race beyond redemption – does it not? Are you following me?
God has to bribe people to love him; the sin nature is not dealt
with; Jesus’ death didn’t accomplish the end of the old and the
start of the new -- and therefore, there is no such thing as redemption.
Satan has just corrupted the whole human race and when he ends up
in the lake of fire he will go there with a laugh and a smirk on
his face and says, “I’ve really won this.” And if that is the case,
God Himself is in deception. I’m serious; just think it through.
God’s not saying that’s the case, but if it is the case, that God
has to bribe the whole of the Job church before they’ll love Him
and serve Him, then God sent His Son to no avail. It’s all been
that’s pretty serious. If the godliness of a righteous man is only
there for his own benefit, there is a chasm of alienation brought
about by sin that cannot be bridged. This is a serious question.
I want you to hear that question; it’s being answered today. Does
Job fear God for naught? And I’m not talking about Job. I am talking
about the church – I am talking about us . And so this question
has to be answered in the test. It is the only way it can be answered.
God says, “Well it’s not true - Job fears me because he just fears
me – it’s in his heart,” Satan would turn around and say, “I don’t
believe you. Prove it.” And so it has to be proven in the test and
that is what has to happen.
so Job, there he is – he’s sitting there and everything is going
really nicely – he can survey all that is in front of him like Nebuchadnezzar
did; but suddenly it all changes. Satan had said, “If you touch
all he has…” – and so God says, “All he has is in your power, only
upon himself put not forth thine hand.” And Satan went off to do
had some troubles here in our midst. I think of Upsala…..that was
pretty hard. And you can think of other things, but I don’t think
we’ve had anything that quite compares with Job. You can read it
through. He lost his children, he lost his servants, he lost his
asses, he lost his camels, he lost his sheep, and it was just ‘bamm!,
bamm!, bamm!, bamm!’ – one thing after another, and we read these
1:20, 21 ‘Then Job arose, and rent his mantel, and shaved his head,
and fell down upon the ground and worshipped, and said, “Naked came
I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the
Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of
is it that Satan said that Job would do? What did he do? He worshipped.
Just remember this. Darla, remember this. I don’t know what the
future is – none of us know what the outcome is. I’ve determined
that I’m not going to be in the category of ‘you have not because
you ask not’! I believe in healing; I believe we have a “God Who
healeth thee” – I’m going to ask; I’m going to keep praying!
just love our times in Africa. We were in the Uganda convention
– we’d come to the end of the day and the meetings were closing.
Suddenly, one person after another came up to me, and these were
people who didn’t speak English, and so they would come up and point
to a particular part of their body. I knew what they were saying
that they wanted prayer because there was something wrong just there…..and…..what
can you do??? You just pray! So I prayed. And then I was walking
out of the hall that we were meeting in, and one of the African
sisters was walking out with me. I know her and she speaks English.
I said, “How are you?” and she said, “I’m fine.” I said, “How are
your children?” She said, “My children are not very well.” I came
out of the church, and there, just sitting on the ground was one
of her little boys, David Kiseka, and he was sick. I went over and
put my hand on his head and I could feel the burning of the fever.
I don’t know what it was but it may well have been malaria. Brother
Joseph was walking past at that time and I said, “Joe come over
here, we’re going to pray for this little boy.” So, just as simply
as could be – a prayer that a child could pray – we laid our hands
on him and asked Jesus to heal him. We went home and came the next
morning to the meeting. In the praise, I looked across and there
were some of these ladies I had prayed for the day before and they
were praising. Now, when you say ‘praise’ in Africa, …… you’re not
just talking about standing there and mouthing words and maybe raising
your hands, I mean you’re talking about…. you haven’t seen dancing
if you haven’t been to Africa! The nearest you’ve seen to African
dancing is like Brother Raymond, but that is only just a shadow!
They did say when Raymond was in Kenya, that his was the closest
thing to African dancing that they had seen in a ‘white man – an
mzungu . And these ladies were dancing!
Then I looked and there was little David and he was standing there
at the front of the congregation, in an area equivalent to this,
and he was really going; he was praising; he was just so full of
energy! And I just thought, “Wow!” I took a picture of it;– I thought
I just have to take a picture of this because it’s an example of
the power of God – God does these things!
the question is; ‘ Do we serve Him because He does that,
or do we serve Him because He’s God?’ God has a right to expect
to be served and worshipped only for the simple reason that He
is God ! He has made us! We are the people of His pasture! We
are the product of His creative work! We are the purchase of His
blood and we have every reason in those few statements to give Him
our entire devotion and our complete worship, and we have no excuse
if we do not! He doesn’t have to heal us! He chooses at times to
heal us! He’s chosen to forgive our sins – if He hadn’t forgiven
our sins, He would still be God! And God wants to prove to Satan
that He has raised up a people—‘a Job Company’—that will serve Him
irrespective! We talk about whether God loves us unconditionally
– that is not the question that has to be answered! The
question that Satan is challenging God with is, “ Can you raise
up a people that will love You unconditionally ?”
love the fact that God has put into our hands, into our responsibility,
the power to answer Satan’s question. Satan’s a liar from the beginning;
a murderer from the beginning – I DON’T LIKE HIM! And you and I
have the opportunity to prove him wrong – and to prove that God
can do it.
Isaiah 1:21 it says, “How is the faithful city become a harlot!”
Do you know what a harlot is? It is somebody that gives her relationship
for payment. Do you know what a bride—a wife is? Somebody who gives
herself for no payment but for love. Do you see why the church can
be called a ‘harlot church’? Because she says, “I’ll love You if
You pay me.”
we were in Kampala, all over the city were huge billboards and there
were great big posters on them of a man from over here (I’m not
going to say his name, it doesn’t matter) preaching before a huge
black assembly. I don’t know if he’d been there before, whether
this was one of those cut and paste jobs or whether it was a real
photograph. I was a bit skeptical, I have to say. I saw this same
man later on because we were in a hotel that had a little television
in the room and I switched the television on and he was being interviewed
by one of the Ugandan TV presenters. It was a bit distressing actually,
just hearing the interview, but at the end of it the interviewer
said, “Now, would you like to pray for our TV audience?” He said,
“Yes, I’d love to.”
I thought, ‘What would you pray in that situation?’ I thought, knowing
where this man’s coming from, surely he will at least take the opportunity
to present Jesus, and to pray for the lost and just to say, “If
you want to give your heart to Jesus, just pray this prayer with
me.” I thought something like that might happen, but all he did
was pray for the sick. I have found that ‘out there’ just at the
moment – it will be something else tomorrow, perhaps – but there
is such an emphasis of physical healing, as if people don’t realize
that even Lazarus who was raised from the dead, died again! I am
more interested at what’s going to happen eternally! Job says, “If
worms destroy this body, what does it matter? I know my redeemer
there’s a big argument in heaven. Satan’s saying, “You can’t do
it.” And God’s saying, “Let’s see.” Those who say that suffering
and sickness are caused by sin may be wrong. Those who say that
sickness continues because of lack of faith may be wrong. It may
be that all things are in place because God is showing Satan, “I’ve
got a people who love Me.”
first test is: Job loses everything he has.
a bookmark where you are here, and let’s turn over to Psalm 16.
This is a Psalm written by David. If you’ll remember that David
is the 8 th son of Jesse. I know it happens in movies; I don’t know
if it happens that much in real life – I’ve never actually experienced
it – but you know, when somebody dies, in theory what they do is
they get the lawyer there and the family gathers and the lawyer
reads the will. Well, just suppose that the lawyer happened to be
some Jewish lawyer, and the deceased happened to be Jesse. So the
lawyer starts to read the will, “ The eldest son of Jesse; Shammah,
you get the family home; Eliab, you get the lands to the north;
Abinidab, you get the lands to the south; Fourth son, you get them
to the east; Fifth, you get the ones to the west; Sixth son, you
get the condo on the beach; Seventh son, you get the apartment in
town; Eighth son,uh oh – he’s the eighth son, and by the time you
get to the eighth son, you know, things have been divided up pretty
well. This is what David says:
16:5 ‘ The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance
and of my cup; thou maintainest my lot (You keep my
portion). The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant
places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.’
lines are the boundary lines. David is saying, “I am content with
everything you have given me, Lord God, I need nothing more.” Why?
Not because I’ve got the condo on the beach, or because I’ve got
the family home or the lands to the north, but because I’ve got
you, Lord God! You are mine inheritance! I need nothing more than
my relationship with you Lord God! They can take my camels; the
Sabeans can come; the winds can come from the four corners; they
can have the asses, they can have the cattle; they can have the
camels; I’ve got you, Lord God!”
once led my wife and myself and our children into a situation in
community, and the financial order in that community was that you
put in everything you had. So we put in everything we had. I had
been in business; I had some capital that was returned to me out
of the business; we sold our home, we had a certain number of investments,
we had a bit of cash in the bank; we put the whole lot in – everything.
And we watched it being spent. Three years later, God told us to
leave. We had nothing. Some of you have seen pictures of Blessington
where we are now. How was that beautiful house acquired? We didn’t
initially give the money to the community but to God. It had been
God who told us to go to the community and giving all was part of
the package – we obeyed the Lord. We were walking in His ways; this
was what we had to do, it was part of our obedience. And the LORD
kept us! And if ever you come to Blessington – some of you have
been there, and some of you have yet to come – you’ll see, God didn’t
leave us. He provided magnificently. We live in a place I would
never, ever have lived in by myself—I couldn’t maintain it. In fact
we bought it from people who couldn’t maintain it. The Lord is the
portion of our inheritance; that’s all we need! He says, “Not even
a sparrow falls to the ground that He doesn’t know it. Of how much
more value are you than they?” He’ll take responsibility. You can
commit your way to the Lord and He’ll look after you. I stand here
today and I’m a testimony to that.
so helpful to me as I go to Africa and see the multitudes today
who have nothing and I can say, “I’ve been there, and your only
answer is not the white man”, and there are a few, just a few who
are beginning to get a hold of this. Your answer is not the white
man, and I want to tell you white men, your answer is not your bank
balance! It’s not the title deeds to your property! The Lord is
the portion of your inheritance! And David said, “The Lord is the
portion of mine inheritance” and then he went on and said, “The
Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and my cup.” You know what
the cup is? Jesus said, “The cup that the Father gives Me, shall
I not drink it?” He was heading to the cross. He said, “The Lord
is in the cup as well.” Darla, the Lord’s in the cup. Marcus,
you found the Lord in the cup, didn’t you? The Lord’s in the
cup – in the suffering. Blessed be the name of the Lord. The
Lord gives – the Lord takes away – but the Lord Himself
doesn’t go! Some of the things will go – He’s there in the
cup too. So we can all say, when we have the Lord there, the lines
are fallen to me in pleasant places. It’s okay, the boundary lines
are in the right place and I’ve got the Lord – I have a goodly heritage.
to Job chapter 1. God said to Satan, “You can put your hand to all
he has, but you can’t put your hand to him.” Later on he was allowed
to touch his body, but you know the one thing Satan can’t touch
– he can’t touch your life. He has no power over your life. God’s
never going to give him the authority to take away your
life – I’m talking about LIFE – he can’t get there; he’s got no
authority. Jesus said, “No one shall pluck them out of My hand.”
He does not have that authority. So in the midst of this, one thing
that was not moved was Job’s faith in God. He knew that was his
2:1-3 ‘Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present
themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present
himself before the Lord. And the Lord said unto Satan, “From whence
comest thou?” And Satan answered the Lord, and said, “From going
to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.” And
the Lord said unto Satan, “Hast thou considered my servant, Job,
that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright
man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? And still he holdeth
fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy
him without cause.’
love that phrase, “without cause”. You know, we are always wanting
to know the why? There isn’t always an answer to the question, “Why?”
There was no fault in Job that made this happen. That was what God
was saying. “Satan you did this, you made this happen, you provoked
me to do this, you made this test to have to come in place, and
the fault was not in Job that made this happen. You know when some
things happen, the prayer, the cry that comes up is, “Why, Lord?”
You are not always going to know the answer to that question. I
want to tell you that if you knew the answer to that question, if
you could understand all the ways of God, you would be god, and
your god would be as small as your understanding. You’d have to
fit Him inside your head, if you could understand His ways, wouldn’t
you? He’d have to fit inside your understanding and therefore you
would be greater than He was. So He cannot, even if He wanted to
explain all His ways to you and me.
chapter 32 of the book, a man called Elihu comes along. We’ve identified
Job (and I’m jumping over the “Comforters” for the moment) and now
Elihu comes along. And you will appreciate that Elihu has sat there
from the beginning; he has said nothing; he’s heard all that has
gone on before, and it’s not until chapter 32 that Elihu speaks,
having heard everything. If we identify Job, I believe we need to
name means, ‘He’s my God’. He silences the fleshy voices of the
‘Comforters’. He silences Job. He says a few things about himself.
He says in:
32:8 ‘There’s a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty
giveth them understanding.’ (He realizes that understanding
doesn’t come from man, but from the ‘inspiration’ of The Almighty
– it’s the work of the Holy Spirit.)
33:4 (He makes the claim for himself and he says,)
‘ The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of
the Almighty hath given me life.’ (He realizes that
the understanding that has to come in this situation must come from
the Holy Spirit, and he realizes that the only life that counts
is the life of the Holy Spirit – the life of the Spirit.) Remember,
we are identifying this man.
32:19 ‘Behold, my belly is as wine which hath no vent: it is ready
to burst like a new bottle.’ (He says, “I’m like a
wineskin full-up with new wine,) Okay, we’re putting evidence
together as to who this man might be.
33:1 ‘Wherefore, Job, I pray thee, hear my speeches, and hearken
to all my words.’ He is a man Job should listen to.
33:6 ‘Behold, I am according to thy wish in God’s stead: I also
am formed out of the clay. ’ ( If you read back you
will find that Job, in his appeal to God in the midst of his suffering
says, “If only there was a daysman, a go-between, a mediator!” And
Elihu says, “I’m the one.” He says, “I’m here in God’s place.” And
he said, “But I am also made of clay.”) Do you think we can
identify Elihu? Have you got it?
represents the Lord Jesus who appears in the midst of the suffering
and brings the words of hope and life. If you read through what
Elihu has to say, you will find that there are two things he has
to say. The first thing he says is, “Job, you will not understand
the ways of God.” Don’t try to understand the ways of God. God is
33:8-13 Elihu says, ‘Surely thou hast
spoken in mine hearing, and I have heard the voice of thy words,
saying, I am clean without transgression, I am innocent; neither
is there iniquity in me. Behold, He findeth occasions against me,
He counteth me for his enemy, He putteth my feet in the stocks,
he marketh all my paths.’ Elihu says, “Behold,
in this thou art not just: I will answer thee that God is greater
than man . Why dost thou strive against Him? For He giveth not
account of any of His matters.”
first thing that Elihu comes and says is, “God is great.” He establishes
the position of Almighty God before Job. Family, if we’re to be
the “Job Company”, there is something we have to understand; we
have a great God! We come together in these meetings and we start
by singing praises to our God. Do you know why we’re doing it? To
stretch our legs? To exercise our lungs and our voices? No! It’s
to establish that our God is great before our eyes – and worthy
to be praised! He is great and greatly to be praised! We need to
know that! We’ve got to hold on to that! Our God is GREAT! He does
things in the heavens that we don’t understand – His ways are past
finding out—His riches are unsearchable – His love is unfathomable
- and we need to get hold of these truths!
Jesus came to earth it was a move that God made, that nobody understood,
and if you think you can understand it now, you are a better woman
or man than I am because I’m still struggling to understand why
God would give His son for me. Why did He do it? I don’t know. I
don’t understand all the ways of God; His ways are not my ways;
His thoughts are not my thoughts; He isn’t me! God is greater than
man. And, like Elihu, the first thing that Jesus declares by His
coming to earth is that we have a great God! God is plenteous in
did God save you? Do you understand why He saved you? I can think
of a lot better candidates than me if He was going to save somebody
– I can think of a lot better people to save than me. And yet I
don’t believe that God is a bad merchant. You know, if He finds
a pearl of great price, you know He’s going to do the right thing!
He’s a very wise merchant. Why then, in the economy of God, would
He give the blood of His son for a people like us? I don’t understand
God! And the first thing the coming of Jesus declares is, “We don’t
think the coming of Jesus is declared here:
33:14 ‘God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not.’
If you read one of the other versions it says,
He speaks this way, He speaks that way; man doesn’t understand it
-- now one way, now another.
33:15 ….He may speak when somebody’s asleep, in a dream. But
if you’ll read through these next verses you will find what it is
really describing is somebody who is dead in trespasses and sins.
That’s somebody that’s in a sleep of spiritual death. That’s somebody
that’s just not able to receive the things of God, and He comes
in, in the midst of that death, and breaks through and withdraws
man from his purpose; He changes his direction; He changes his ways;
He changes his ambitions; He changes his goals; He changes his life
and He does it and starts off when the man is asleep. Hallelujah!
another reason Jesus came. He came to seek and to save that which
was lost. Hallelujah! And Elihu comes and he says, “We’ve got a
great God and I’ve come to declare He’s come to seek and to save
that which was lost.” And you read on and you find another thing
- and Jesus declares this too. He says, “God is not only great,
but everything He does is righteous and just.”
think of that time when Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane, and
there he’s praying, “Father if it be possible, let this
cup pass from me, nevertheless, not my will but Thy will.” What
do you think He thinks about that prayer today? Don’t you think
He says, “Father, I’m just so glad You didn’t change plans; I’m
just so glad that You knew things I didn’t know and You kept the
course; You didn’t change direction just because I said, ‘Father,
please’.” I think He’s now saying, “Oh Father, I’m so grateful you
took me to the cross! The cross is now my people’s cause of rejoicing,
it’s their boast, it’s their glory! I’m glad You didn’t change plan
Father. I just want You to know, You were right!”
think of when Paul had the thorn in the flesh, and I don’t know
what the thorn is. I’ve got my own speculations – you’ve probably
got yours. I have the feeling that if God really wanted us to know,
He would have put it in the Book. But what Paul said is, “I sought
the Lord that He would take it away, and He didn’t.” And he said,
“I’ve learned I’m just going to rejoice in my infirmities that the
power of God may rest upon me.” And I think he came to the place
where he said, “God, I don’t understand, but Your ways are right.
And I think Jesus came to declare, “God’s ways are right. Not only
that He is great, but that He’s right.”
Elihu comes and he says to Job and he says to you and to me, “Whatever
happens, God is right! The integrity of God stands intact! It is
not dependent on our understanding; it is not varied by what happens;
things that are catastrophes – apparently -- may happen,
though I do not think there is truly any catastrophe that can happen
to those that are walking with God. It may appear that
everything is going wrong, but nothing is going wrong if you are
walking with the Lord – attribute integrity to our God! Our God
is good (the audience answers, “All the time”) and all the time
(audience – “God is good!) ….and that’s easy to say in a convention.
we were in chapter 2 we were reading how Satan came back to before
the presence of the Lord and he said, “You haven’t touched
his body. If you made him sick; if you made him really hurt, then
he would curse You.” And so Job was smitten in his body
and he had the boils, he had the potsherd and he scraped himself
and he sat down there and his wife said, “Curse God and
is a ‘company’ that God has that are not going to listen to the
woman. Adam listened to the woman, but God’s raising up a company
that will not listen to the woman.
2:11 ‘Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that was
come upon him, they came everyone from his own place; Eliphaz the
Temanite, and Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite: for
they had made an appointment together to come to mourn with him
and to comfort him. And when they lifted up their eyes afar off,
and knew him not, they lifted up their voice, and wept; and they
rent everyone his mantle, and sprinkled dust upon their heads toward
heaven. So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days and
seven nights and none spake a word unto him: for they saw that his
grief was very great.’
doesn’t actually say it, but I believe Elihu was there as well all
this time. I don’t think that in all that went on that Elihu wasn’t
there because he said later that he’d heard the words. You know,
in the midst of it all, Elihu’s always there but we don’t
always perceive it. ‘I will never leave you nor forsake
you – I’ll never leave you nor forsake you.’ These three,
who were later on called by Job, “miserable comforters”, came to
bring him comfort.
names are significant. Eliphaz means: ‘god of gold.’ He was a Temanite.
Temanite means: ‘the south, or right hand’, and if you’ll just think
about it, if south is on your right hand side, you are facing east.
So you know what sort of ‘gold’ he was offering. You know what sort
of word was going to come forth from him. “Job, it’s meant to be
an easy life; it’s meant to be comfortable.” – I would say a ‘ prosperity
‘Confusing by mingling love.’ Confusing love, caused by mingling
– soul and spirit – a mixture. He was a Shuhite [that’s not talking
about his stature!], it means: ‘to sink, or, a valley’ – it’s going
to take you down because it’s not a pure word – it’s a mixture;
soul and spirit – confusing.
means: ‘Departing’. Something that takes you out. He was a Naamathite;
that means: ‘Pleasantness’ – it’s a feminine word; the feminine
of pleasure. He was a descendent of Cain.
I read these names I thought of James 3:1 , where
he says, “The wisdom that comes from beneath is earthy,
sensual and devilish.” You just think about it:
Eliphaz offers them the gold, the natural : earthy ;
Bildad means ‘ confusing soul and spirit’ ; sensual ;
Zophar, ‘taking you out – making you depart ’; devilish
from chapter 3 to 31, they are sitting there with Job. Why? Why?
Why? Why would God give 29 chapters to that? Could it be – could
it perhaps be, ‘these miserable comforters are around a long time’?
Hmmm…..they’re around today.
was in England recently and I took my Bible with me, but I didn’t
have access to my Strong’s Concordance. The Lord said to me, “Read
the First Book of Kings” and I started reading it and went straight
into the story of David when he’s an old man and he can’t get warm.
The servants think, ‘What can we do about this?’ They search for
a fair damsel up and down the land, and they find the fairest they
can find. Her name is Abishag, and they bring her to him. They say,
“ Let her cherish him and let her lie in his bosom.” We
read that she did come and she cherished David but he did not lie
noticed that, and I’m reading on the premise that this Book’s for
me, and I said, “Lord, why did You put that in there? I don’t like
reading other people’s medical records. They’re private; they’re
personal! When my father died, the last time I saw him he was comatose;
he was lying on the hospital bed and he was in weakness, but if
you were to come and ask me about my father, I would not first of
all remember that particular time. There were so many good times
we had together! He was a man who taught me the ways of the Lord;
he was a man who loved the Word; he was a man who prayed for me.
I would tell you all about those things – I wouldn’t tell you about
him lying in the hospital bed. Why do they put that detail in the
scriptures about David? We know about David, King of Israel; we
know about the wonderful things he did – why does the Bible tell
us this personal stuff? That was my question, and I felt the Lord
say to me, “Find out the meaning of Abishag.”
I came home, it was about 10 or 11 o’clock at night, quite late.
I said, “Hello” to Kathy and she said, “I have a meal for you” and
I said, “I need my Strong’s Concordance.” I got my Strong’s Concordance
and Abishag means,… wait for it… ‘father of deception’. I read it
several times just to be sure I hadn’t got the wrong Strong’s number.
But right at the end of King David’s life, the deception was there.
The time of the transfer of the Kingdom to Solomon, the change of
the age, – there was Abishag………deception right there! And what did
they say about her? The fairest damsel in the land! Are we in peril?
Are these ‘perilous times’? Is it hurricanes that are the problem?
No. Is it mudslides? Is it terrorism? No, it isn’t. It’s deception.
And it says, regarding David, although she cherished him, he did
not lie with her. The servants had a plan that they should lie together
but he never took her to his bosom. He never took her to his heart.
remember, a relationship with Abishag killed Adonijah. Deception
is a killer. Because he wanted relationship with her, he lost his
life. We are not going to come to a time in this dispensation where
there is no deception around. The ‘lie’ is around, just as King
David was not in a position where he could stop Abishag from being
there in the room with him wiping the food off his beard and attending
to his bed sheets, and whatever needed to be done for this old man.
He couldn’t stop that, but he did not receive her to his heart.
So next I considered why it was that David never took Abishag into
I were to say to you, “What is your favorite Psalm?”(I did this
down in Hollywood just a couple of weeks back) I would get all the
answers….Psalm 91, 23, 133 and 84 – there’s some beautiful, beautiful
Psalms. But nobody, and I’ve tried this twice, nobody
has ever said, “Psalm 119.” I say to people, (I’ve done this too)
“What do you know about Psalm 119?” They’ll say, “It’s LONG.” Some
people might say, “I like Psalm 117 (and the reason behind it is
because ‘it’s short!’), but Psalm 119 is so long!” There are 22
letters in the Hebrew alphabet and there are 8 verses for every
one of those letters, for every one of those 8 verses begin with
that Hebrew letter. Eight 22’s are 176 and there are 176 verses
in the Psalm.
that’s not what it’s about! It’s about a man who was sold out in
love for the word of God! He says, “Teach me Your way; with a whole
heart, I want to walk in Your ways!” What kept him when he was there
in the last days of his life was that through the walk of his life,
he had said, “Lord I want You to teach me; show me the way I should
go; I don’t know how to walk this walk, teach me Your way, Oh
God! ” And when the test came at the end, and the deception
was right there as it is right here in our house;
the thoughts coming to our bedroom; the thing that will
keep us is a cry to God; “God, give me a heart that loves Your voice
– teach me Your way, Oh God!”
comforters stayed with Job for 29 chapters, but Elihu was there
all the time – he was there all the time. At the end of the book
God appears. Do you know what God talks about? He talks about His
creation. He loves His creation. He gets so excited by the creation.
I think one of the nicest parts of it is where He’s talking about
the stork. The stork is a ‘stupid bird’. It lays the eggs in the
ground and people walk on them and it forgets where it has laid
them and God loves the fact that He made the stork so stupid! (Laughter)
You check it out – God loves His creation. And He takes Job’s attention
at the end of the suffering and at the end of this dealing and He
turns his eyes to the creation, because God’s got more to do than
just this stage of the operation.
at the end, Job comes forth, and you’ve read those verses at the
end – even if you’ve not read the chunk in the middle, you’ve read
those verses at the end and you find that he is treated by God as
a son. And a double portion comes to him, just like it fell on Elisha
after Elijah was taken. God is raising up a Job Company. They may
be persecuted; they may be despised; they are in great challenge
because of deception, because of voices that are speaking to them
from all directions, telling them to compromise, trying to bring
confusion; telling them to go after the things of this world, but
God brings Job through and at the end He establishes that Job is
a first born son.
going to do this. Family, God is going to do this. It
may take some situations and circumstances; some suffering
that we will not think to be very pleasant. I don’t know why I said
the word ‘may’ – it will! When I first saw these truths,
the following week was terrible! God doesn’t let you ‘off the hook’
just because He shows it to you in the word. I had a dreadful week
– everything went wrong the next week, and people started to say,
“That just what you preached on Sunday.” I hold my hands up now
- “I’m guilty” if you have a bad week next week – but remember the
purpose! You’re answering the challenge of Satan to God.
the challenge is, ‘God You can only raise up people who will serve
You because You bless them’. And we’re here to prove, “God You have
a people who love You unconditionally.”
You have blessed us. God we declare You have loved us and given
Yourself for us. Lord, we’re already blessed above all the people
that are upon the face of the earth. We’re blessed to have this
calling on our lives, God! We’re privileged!
if it takes suffering and a path of the cross and heavy loads to
bear, if it takes crying out in the night hours, remember what you
are doing – you are establishing before the principalities and powers
the manifold wisdom of God – “God, You can do it. And I want to
be one of those You do it through.”
May God bless you.
Cobb’s closing remarks:
book of Job is a very interesting book, alright. While God tells
Satan, “You move Me without cause”, He wasn’t allowing Satan to
do what he was doing to Job without purpose because there was a
fault in Job and it wasn’t a fault that Job was even conscious about.
It’s called a “hidden thing of dishonesty”. I’ll tell you what it
was; it’s written in the book. Job told those comforters, “I have
not done a thing to deserve what is happening to me.”
you ever have something happen to you that you didn’t think you
deserved it? What God was out to do was to get Job’s thinking right.
God wouldn’t just allow one that had no fault or blemish in him
to go through something with no reason. The curse causeless
does not come and Job was under a curse. When you’re sick,
you’re under a curse; sickness is a curse of God. When there’s no
more curse, there’s no more sickness.
can see that this is another thing we want to understand about God.
He is a just God. He will never lay upon man more than is
right. He’ll never do anything that He’s doing without purpose and
without cause. Satan didn’t have anything to accuse Job of; it wasn’t
anything outwardly that he had done, but it was a thought in Job’s
own mind that had to be straightened out. That is, when he was telling
his comforters, “I’ve done nothing to deserve what is happening
to me. If I could just find God, He would tell you that.” That’s
what he said. He said, “If I could find God, He would tell you that
I’ve done nothing to deserve what is happening to me.”
many of you have ever had something happen to you and you didn’t
think you had done anything to deserve it? You see, truly Job hadn’t
done anything. That’s why the devil didn’t have any cause to do
anything to him. Job hadn’t done anything, but under that kind of
a test, he was holding a thought that Elihu picked up. Elihu said,
“I hear the voice of your words and here’s what you were saying,
Job, ‘God is unjust to allow something to happen to man’ because
you said that you didn’t do anything to deserve what is happening
to you. That means that you are ascribing righteousness to yourself
and unrighteousness to God.”
are a lot of people who are caught and they can’t get their deliverance
because they believe they were a victim of circumstances. They are
ascribing themselves righteousness; “I’ve done nothing to deserve
what happened to me! I’m innocent!” And if you ever make that statement,
you are saying that God is unjust.
said, “I want to tell you something, Job. God is righteousness;
not you.” He is not unjust to allow any man to go through anything
without purpose and without cause. You may not see it until God
shows it to you. God says, “You may not understand it, but when
you come into My sanctuary—when you have come into the fullness
of light—then you will know that I have not done anything that I
have done without purpose and without cause.”
great question that people have is, “If God is so good and He is
God and He is control, then why does He allow all these terrible
things to happen?” That’s the great question. “Why were all those
terrible things happening to Job? Why would God allow that to happen,
if God is good?”
I can tell you this: there is nothing that is happening that’s going
to prove that God is unjust. Whenever the light is turned on, just
like it was when it was turned on for Job, Job said, “Woe is me;
I spoke in my ignorance! I’m getting hold now of what God was really
after this whole time, which was to reveal this hidden thing of
dishonesty in me where I would claim I did not deserve—I was righteous—and
by my own thinking I was accusing God of being unjust to allow me
to suffer something without purpose and without cause.”
are a lot of people caught there. They will never get deliverance
until they see, as the book of Job reveals, how deliverance comes.
It says , ‘If there could be a messenger in the midst, one
among a thousand, who can show unto man God’s uprightness so that
man will stop accusing God of being unjust, then I have found a
ransom and it will deliver that soul from going to hell.’
you know that if God had not done what He did to Job that he would
have been on his way to hell? But because there was a messenger,
Elihu, who could hear the voice of Job’s words—he could put his
finger right on the fault—and as soon as he did, because he was
a man who was filled with the Spirit of God, God showed up and confirmed
the word of Elihu to Job. Then Job said, “Wow!”
was sitting here this morning during Brother Andrew’s word and several
times I said, “Wow! I see it now, Lord, even clearer than I’ve ever
seen it before!” This is God moving to straighten up our thinking.
We have to not only offend Him in deed, we also have to not offend
Him in word so that we’re perfect in word and in deed.
a matter of fact, we cannot get to perfection by offending in word.
‘He that offend not in word, the same is a perfect man.’
And Job was on the way to perfection. And he was made
perfect by the things which he suffered. Can you say, “Amen!”?
you ever complain and murmur again about the things which you are
suffering or will you give Him thanks in ALL things? I guarantee
you, when we get it right, Satan will be silenced.
of the things that just dawned so clearly to me this morning when
Brother Andrew was ministering; I had never seen it this clear before
or maybe even in this dimension before: I’ve always seen—and you
know the way you think about a thing sometimes even causes you not
to see the full truth of it—but, I’ve always seen that Satan is
an adversary; that he was always there to accuse me of what I had
done wrong. But, Job hadn’t done anything wrong; it was just
a thought he had. He thought what happened to him
was unjust because he had done nothing wrong. I see the great accusation
of the devil is not to accuse us of what we’ve done wrong; we have
to admit that! The great accusation of the devil is, “Do they love
You for naught?” That is the accuser of the brethren: “Do they love
You for naught?”
you want people to come to your meetings, just have a god who will
perform the miracles, make them rich, increase them with goods,
and now you know you are being blessed of God. No, no. It’s when
you are suffering the loss of all things and you count it all dung.
He can take you through fire and water and you’re still counting
it all joy and there’s no murmuring, no complaining because you
know this is the will of God for you. That is 100% deliverance!
That will deliver anybody when they wake up to the truth that God
up to the fact that no matter what you’ve gone through and what
you’ve suffered, that God is a just God and ascribe to Him righteousness
and say, “God, I may not see why all this is happening, but I know
one thing about it, You are righteous and You would never take anybody
through anything without purpose and without cause and You’re working
it altogether for the good of those who love You and are keeping
Your commandments.” Hallelujah!
you ever murmur or complain about anything again? (Brother Bill
Grier responds, “We shouldn’t!”)
is something else that I had never seen to this extent. I thought
I saw it and I know I’ve known it. It’s the absolute awe that I
don’t have to be on a quest to find the purpose; I have to wait
until He shows it—wait until He reveals it. I’ve
known that, but there’s still that aspect of wanting to pursue and
there’s a holy help for all of us in that, because we’re looking
around all the time—why, God? Why?
tell people all the time, don’t ask God, He’ll show you. I think
God has settled some things inside us today with this word. Didn’t
you feel that?
not our part to reason why, just simply do and die. So Brother Sam
got hold of the message and said, “If you’ve got a problem, I’ve
got an answer for you: die!” Then all your problems are over. If
you no longer live, then what kind of problems could you have?