Job After His Trials
Job 42:7–9 And it was so, that after Jehovah had spoken these words to Job, Jehovah said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against you, and against your two friends: for you have not spoken of Me the thing that is right, as My servant Job has. Therefore take to you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and My servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that you have not spoken of Me the thing which is right, like My servant Job. So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as Jehovah commanded them: Jehovah also accepted Job.
Job 42:10 And Jehovah turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: also Jehovah gave Job twice as much as he had before.
Job 42:12 So Jehovah blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning: for he had fourteen thousand sheep, and six thousand camels, and a thousand yoke of oxen, and a thousand she asses.
Job 42:17 So Job died, being old and full of days.
Those Who Fear God and Shun Evil Are Looked Upon With Cherishment by God, While Those Who Are Foolish Are Seen as Lowly by God
In Job 42:7–9, God says that Job is His servant. His use of the term “servant” to refer to Job demonstrates Job’s importance in His heart; though God did not call Job something more esteemed, this appellation had no bearing on Job’s importance within God’s heart. “Servant” here is God’s nickname for Job. God’s multiple references to “My servant Job” show how He was pleased with Job, and although God did not speak of the meaning behind the word “servant,” God’s definition of the word “servant” can be seen from His words in this passage of scripture. God first said to Eliphaz the Temanite: “My wrath is kindled against you, and against your two friends: for you have not spoken of Me the thing that is right, as My servant Job has.” These words are the first time that God had openly told people that He accepted all that was said and done by Job after God’s trials of him, and are the first time that He had openly confirmed the accuracy and correctness of all that Job had done and said. God was angry at Eliphaz and the others because of their incorrect, absurd discourse, because, like Job, they could not see the appearance of God or hear the words He spoke in their lives, yet Job had such an accurate knowledge of God, whereas they could only blindly guess about God, violating God’s will and trying His patience in all that they did. Consequently, at the same time as accepting all that was done and said by Job, God grew wrathful toward the others, for in them He was not only unable to see any reality of fear of God, but also heard nothing of the fear of God in what they said. And so God next made the following demands of them: “Therefore take to you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and My servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly.” In this passage God is telling Eliphaz and the others to do something that will redeem their sins, for their folly was a sin against Jehovah God, and thus they had to make burnt offerings in order to remedy their mistakes. Burnt offerings are often offered to God, but what is unusual about these burnt offerings is that they were offered to Job. Job was accepted by God because he bore testimony to God during his trials. These friends of Job, meanwhile, were exposed during the time of his trials; because of their folly, they were condemned by God, and they incited the wrath of God, and should be punished by God—punished by making burnt offerings before Job—after which Job prayed for them to dispel God’s punishment and wrath toward them. God’s intention was to bring shame upon them, for they were not people who feared God and shunned evil, and they had condemned the integrity of Job. In one regard, God was telling them that He did not accept their actions, but greatly accepted and took delight in Job; in another, God was telling them that being accepted by God elevates man before God, that man is loathed by God because of his folly, and offends God because of it, and is lowly and vile in God’s eyes. These are the definitions given by God of two types of people, they are God’s attitudes toward these two types of people, and they are God’s articulation of the worth and standing of these two types of people. Even though God called Job His servant, in God’s eyes this servant was beloved, and was bestowed with the authority to pray for others and forgive them their mistakes. This servant was able to talk directly to God and come directly before God, and his status was higher and more honorable than those of others. This is the true meaning of the word “servant” spoken by God. Job was given this special honor because of his fear of God and shunning of evil, and the reason why others were not called servants by God is because they did not fear God and shun evil. These two distinctly different attitudes of God are His attitudes toward two types of people: Those who fear God and shun evil are accepted by God and seen as precious in His eyes, while those who are foolish do not fear God, are incapable of shunning evil, and are not able to receive God’s favor; they are often loathed and condemned by God, and are lowly in God’s eyes.
God Bestows Authority Upon Job
Job prayed for his friends, and afterward, because of Job’s prayers, God did not deal with them as befitted their folly—He did not punish them or take any retribution upon them. Why was that? It was because the prayers made for them by God’s servant, Job, had reached His ears; God forgave them because He accepted Job’s prayers. So, what do we see in this? When God blesses someone, He gives them many rewards, and not just material ones: God also gives them authority, entitles them to pray for others, and God forgets and overlooks those people’s transgressions, because He hears these prayers. This is the very authority that God gave to Job. Through Job’s prayers to halt their condemnation, Jehovah God brought shame upon those foolish people—which, of course, was His special punishment for Eliphaz and the others.
Job Is Once More Blessed by God, and Is Never Again Accused by Satan
Among the utterances of Jehovah God are the words that “you have not spoken of Me the thing that is right, as My servant Job has.” What was it that Job had said? It was what we talked about previously, as well as the many pages of words in the Book of Job that Job is recorded as having spoken. In all of these many pages of words, Job never once has any complaints or misgivings about God. He simply awaits the outcome. It is this waiting which is his attitude of obedience, as a result of which, and as a result of the words he said to God, Job was accepted by God. When he endured trials and suffered hardship, God was by his side, and although his hardship was not lessened by God’s presence, God saw what He wished to see, and heard what He wished to hear. Every one of Job’s actions and words reached the eyes and ears of God; God heard, and He saw—this is fact. Job’s knowledge of God, and his thoughts about God in his heart at that time, during that period, were not actually as specific as those of the people of today, but in the context of the time, God still recognized all that he had said, because his behavior and the thoughts in his heart, as well as what he had expressed and revealed, were sufficient for His requirements. During the time that Job was subjected to trials, that which he thought in his heart and resolved to do showed God an outcome, one that was satisfactory to God, and after this God took away Job’s trials, Job emerged from his troubles, and his trials were gone and never again befell him. Because Job had already been subjected to trials, and had stood firm during these trials, and completely triumphed over Satan, God gave him the blessings that he so rightfully deserved. As recorded in Job 42:10, 12, Job was blessed once again, and was blessed with more than he had been in the first instance. At this time Satan had withdrawn, and no longer said or did anything, and from then onward Job was no longer interfered with or attacked by Satan, and Satan no longer made accusations against God’s blessings of Job.
Job Spends the Latter Half of His Life Amid God’s Blessings
Although His blessings of that time were only limited to sheep, cattle, camels, material assets, and so on, the blessings that God wished to bestow upon Job in His heart were far more than this. At the time, were there recorded what kind of eternal promises God wished to give Job? In His blessings of Job, God did not mention or touch upon his end, and regardless of what importance or position Job held within God’s heart, in sum God was very measured in His blessings. God did not announce Job’s end. What does this mean? At that time, when God’s plan had yet to reach the point of the proclamation of man’s end, the plan had yet to enter the final stage of His work, God made no mention of the end, merely bestowing material blessings upon man. What this means is that the latter half of Job’s life was passed amid God’s blessings, which was what made him different to other people—but like them he aged, and like any normal person the day came when he said goodbye to the world. Thus is it recorded that “So Job died, being old and full of days” (Job 42:17). What is the meaning of “died full of days” here? In the era before God proclaimed people’s end, God set a life expectancy for Job, and when that age had been reached He allowed Job to naturally depart from this world. From Job’s second blessing until his death, God did not add any more hardship. To God, Job’s death was natural, and also necessary; it was something very normal, and neither a judgment nor a condemnation. While he was alive, Job worshiped and feared God; with regard to what sort of end he had following his death, God said nothing, nor made any comment about it. God has a strong sense of propriety in what He says and does, and the content and principles of His words and actions are in accordance with the stage of His work and the period in which He is working. What kind of end did someone such as Job have in God’s heart? Had God reached any kind of decision in His heart? Of course He had! It is just that this was unknown by man; God did not want to tell man, nor did He have any intention of telling man. Thus, superficially speaking, Job died full of days, and such was the life of Job.
The Price Lived Out by Job During His Lifetime
Did Job live a life of value? Where was the value? Why is it said that he lived a life of value? To man, what was his value? From the viewpoint of man, he represented the mankind whom God wishes to save, in bearing a resounding testimony to God before Satan and the people of the world. He fulfilled the duty that ought to be fulfilled by a creature of God, set an exemplar, and acted as a model for all those whom God wishes to save, allowing people to see that it is entirely possible to triumph over Satan by relying on God. What was his value to God? To God, the value of Job’s life lay in his ability to fear God, worship God, testify to the deeds of God, and praise the deeds of God, bringing God comfort and something to enjoy; to God, the value of Job’s life was also in how, before his death, Job experienced trials and triumphed over Satan, and bore resounding testimony to God before Satan and the people of the world, glorifying God among mankind, comforting God’s heart, and allowing God’s eager heart to behold an outcome and see hope. His testimony set a precedent for the ability to stand firm in one’s testimony to God, and for being able to shame Satan on behalf of God, in God’s work of managing mankind. Is this not the value of Job’s life? Job brought comfort to God’s heart, he gave God a foretaste of the delight of being glorified, and provided a wonderful beginning for God’s management plan. From this point onward, the name of Job became a symbol for the glorification of God, and a sign of mankind’s triumph over Satan. What Job lived out during his lifetime, as well as his remarkable triumph over Satan will forever be cherished by God, and his perfection, uprightness, and fear of God will be venerated and emulated by generations to come. He will forever be cherished by God like a flawless, luminous pearl, and so too is he worth treasuring by man!
Excerpted from “God’s Work, God’s Disposition, and God Himself II” in The Word Appears in the Flesh