Bible Notes Online - Job 1 - ESV

v1-5: Introducing the book and its main character.

Job is a blameless man, upright, who shunned evil, all because he feared God. Those who fear God life lives of practical obedience and godliness.

Like Enoch (Gen 5), this godly man had sons and daughters; it is a lie that only the celibate are godly.

His wealth indicates that he is the greatest man in the East. Thus, the events recorded would have become known throughout a wide area.

Like Abraham, Job was father and priest, making his offerings for his family. He prayed for his family; his conscience was tender.

There is no reference to Israel, therefore we may date the book before Moses brought the people out of Egypt. Job lived in the land of Uz, perhaps the land belonging to Abraham’s wider family; see Gen 22.21; and also Lam 4.21.

v6-12: There is activity in the 'spiritual realm', which is unseen by Job. It is in the wisdom of God that such things are kept from His people, see Deut 29.29, and Gen 18.17.

v6: Satan, the adversary, is given access to God; he came with his accusations. In the N.T., he is the accuser of the brethren.

v7: Satan was and is the enemy of all that belongs to God. He walks to and fro in the earth, for he cannot be in more than one place at one time. He can only speak when the Lord God gives him permission.

v8: The Lord takes evident delight in His servant Job; "my servant...there is no-one on earth like him."

v9-10: Satan's accusation is that Job is godly because of material prosperity. The indication is that he was prosperous because of his godliness.

The N.T. indicates that prosperity may hinder spiritual blessing; the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. There is a distinction between wealth and covetousness.

v11: Satan's plan is that God stretch out His hand and touch all that belongs to Job, i.e: to destroy all that he had. God's answer is to permit Satan to attack Job, see 2 Sam 24.1; 1 Chr 21.1; God effectively allowed Satan to tempt His people.

v12: The suffering is permitted but limited; God is ultimately in control; He decides how far the enemy can go.

v13-19: The catalogue of disasters; oxen and donkeys, sheep and camels, sons and daughters. All Job's materials blessings are removed at a stroke. Four witnesses tell Job of the disasters; later there were four lepers witnessing to a time of plenty (2 Kings 7), and there are four witnesses of the life of Jesus Christ.

Note too that Satan heeded God's command, not to lay a hand on Job's person. The attacks were on "everything he has."

v20-22: Job's reaction is in trust and worship, although tinged with sorrow. The Lord's 'opinion' of Job is proved right; He is not ashamed to call them brethren (Heb 2.11). The Lord knows His people, He knows what He can put us through, and He gives grace to enable us to endure.