05/31/16 Warfare in Job

READING: Job 1-4 

The book of Job is not about Satan, though we often think about his role in the story more than we do God’s role. Actually, Satan appears primarily in only the prologue of the book — but his attacks on Job’s life are nevertheless intense. Within these first chapters of this book are details about spiritual warfare that we do not want to miss. 

Let the biblical text teach you about this battle: 

  1. God reigns supremely over even the battles of warfare. It was God — not Satan — who brought up Job’s name in the story. The Creator put the bull’s eye on faithful Job’s back. Obviously, an all-wise God must have had a reason for the conflict.  
  2. Even righteous people face horrendous battles. Some today preach a message that denies this reality that God allows His own to be deeply and painfully attacked by the enemy. The Bible certainly doesn’t whitewash this truth, as is evident in Job’s story. 
  3. Satan is bent on destruction. That’s what we see in the prologue: eradication of animals, servants, and family members. Satan wants to destroy. 
  4. Satan can go only as far as God allows him to go. It appears he would have killed Job if God would have allowed him to do so — but Satan cannot leap the hedge that God has placed around Job. 
  5. Satan knows his limits. He knew he could not go beyond God’s boundaries, and he recognized the hedge: “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and all that he has?” (Job 1:10). 
  6. Satan challenges God’s knowledge of the hearts of human beings. In essence, he said to God about Job, “Don’t you understand that he’s following you only because you’ve blessed him? Don’t you get it? I apparently know his heart more than you do.”  
  7. Satan works through others to try to discourage faithful people. In this case, it was first Job’s wife (“Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die” — Job 2:9) and then his friends who were problematic. 

Perhaps, then, this truth is most pivotal for our reading: victory in spiritual warfare is not avoiding the battle — it’s worshiping God in the battle. It’s trusting God anyway during the conflict, praising Him even in the agony of the battle and refusing to charge Him “with wrongdoing” (Job 1:22).

It's knowing that the One who allows the enemy to attack us is also the One who is our warrior. Trust and obedience to Him go a long way in defeating the enemy’s attempts to discourage us and turn us against our Creator. 


  • Review these truths above, focusing on the ones that are most important to you today. If you’re in an intense battle, worship God anyway.      
  • Pray for someone you know who is in a tough spiritual battle. 

PRAYER: “God, thank You for Your hedges. When You pull the hedge down a bit, thank You that I can still trust Your love. Help my unbelief in times of attack.”