Job's wife is only mentioned in one verse of Scripture and what she said has gotten her in trouble ever since. Let's take a look at her big mistake.
The first thing we must realize is that her husband, who was the most righteous man in the Bible, has the devil turned loose on him by God. (Job 1:1 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.)
In one split second of time Job loses all the material possessions that he has. (Job 1:13-19) And there was a day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house: And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them: And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee. While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house: And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
The first thing that is reported to him is that all of his oxen and asses are taken away by marauders; next his sheep are burned up when fire falls from heaven; then his camels are taken by more invaders; all his servants are slain except those that bring him these bad reports and, the worst news of all, is that his seven sons and three daughters are killed, by what sounds like a tornado, when the roof of the house they are all in collapses on them.
If you re-read the above passage you will come to the conclusion that ALL this happened in one day all at the same time.
And you think that you have problems? Let me ask you a question: What is so bad in your life compared to what Job just went through? The only things that survived were the four servants who each witnessed what happened and reported it to Job.
I think it is interesting that there were four servants who brought Job the bad news and there were also four friends (Eliphaz, Bildad, Zophar and Elihu) who tried to comfort him and help him understand why all this happened. Four is the number of the world. These men were not truly friends in the spiritual sense but were looking at his situation from the world's point of view.
Despite all this bad news Job did not complain or question God. The Bible says inJob 1:20 "Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, (a type of mourning, can you blame him?) and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped," What?? Worshipped?? Was he crazy?? Didn't you hear what happened to him?? Was Job a real person or a saint?? Didn't he have any feelings?? How could he do such a thing?? Go back and read verse one again!!! Job feared God. He was not afraid of Him but he respected Him. He reverenced God. But we are not here to discuss Job or his friends. We want to learn something from Mrs. Job.
From what we understand about Job he was probably the wealthiest man around at that time. Yet he also was one of the most humble. The very fact that God recommended Job to the devil (chapter 1; verse 8) is proof that he was esteemed in God's eyes.
There are only a few men in the Bible that God regards highly.
(James 2:23) And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
(Acts 13:22) And when he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.
(2 Chronicles 24:9) And they made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in to the LORD the collection that Moses the servant of God laid upon Israel in the wilderness.
God knew that Job would not fail that is why He allowed the devil to test him and Job knew that all he had was given to him by God. He didn't do anything to deserve all his wealth. It would be good if we realized this great truth in our own lives.
We don't deserve anything but everlasting punishment in an eternal HELL. Yet, God in His infinite mercy allows us to have some things for our pleasure. If we realized that they are just on loan to us and that we shouldn't become permanently attached to them then we would be a lot happier in our Christian walk. If we would recognize that it is far more important to own Jesus Christ as our personal Saviour than jobs and money and careers and possessions and yes, even people, then it would not be so hard to give them up if we had to.
(Luke 9:57-62) And it came to pass, that, as they went in the way, a certain man said unto him, Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. And he said unto another, Follow me. But he said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God. And another also said, Lord, I will follow thee; but let me first go bid them farewell, which are at home at my house. And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.
In 1998 I married a Pastor who was a missionary living in the Ukraine. I quit my job as an accountant; sold my home; sold everything in the house (all the furnishings and my personal possessions) at auction and followed my husband to the mission field with as many clothes as I could fit into two suitcases.
Do you know why it was so easy for me to do? Because I knew that all of those material possessions that I had were just on loan to me. Everything that I owned was due to the mercy and grace of God. It wasn't really mine. It all belonged to God. He had given me the health and strength for all those years to work and save up my money and to be able to buy things that I needed and have things that I wanted. But now He was asking me for those things back in exchange for the privilege of serving Him full-time in the ministry as a missionary in the Ukraine.
Why did I do it? Because a year before I met my husband the Lord spoke to me (in my heart, not audibly or in a vision) and asked me if I would give up everything I had for Him. I said, "YES." I had great peace about that decision even though I did not understand why He asked me or know what His plans for me were.
Did I have to do it? No, of course not. Would God have punished me if I didn't? Maybe! I don't know. But I do know that I would have been miserable because I would have felt ungrateful to God for His goodness and that I had turned my back on the Lord. Jesus Christ, my Saviour, went to the cross for me and shed His blood so I wouldn't have to go to hell when I die. What price was that worth to me? What price is it worth to you?
(Job 1:21) 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 the LORD. Can you say that with Job? Can you truly say it? I did and I have. During my first year and a half on the mission field I had two miscarriages. The first thing both my husband and I said to each other after each loss, in between tears, was this verse. Was it easy? No, of course not! I don't know why God allows certain things to happen but I do know this - God is in charge. Like the words of the beautiful hymn by Ira Stanphill, "Many things about tomorrow, I don't seem to understand; But I know who holds tomorrow, And I know who holds my hand."
Look at the next verse. (Job 1:22) In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.
Can we do that when disaster (large or small, man-made or God-allowed) comes our way? Yes, we can. Do we? No! What is our first reaction? We usually question or blame God. We cry about it not being fair. That's what Job's wife did. Why? Because she was full of the devil. And so are we when we do the same thing.
When the devil can't get Job to curse God for allowing all that he has to be taken away he asks God for permission to touch him physically. (Job 2:7-8) So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown. And he took him a potsherd to scrape himself withal; and he sat down among the ashes.
Once again Job just takes it all in stride. He doesn't get angry. He attends to his physical needs. Can't you just picture Job calmly trying to ease his own discomfort all the while that he is in mourning?
Now the devil couldn't stand this. He never can when God's people do right. He was so sure that Job would crumble and he could prove his point to God. But he didn't know Job like God did. So Satan plays his last card so to speak. He gets to Job's wife and uses her.
Along comes his wife and offers these words of comfort to the man she loves: (Job 2:9) Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die.
What a selfish, bitter, ungrateful woman Mrs. Job was. You see she was her husband's helpmeet and the very least that he should have been able to expect from her was some sympathy. But she didn't offer any sympathy. Instead she rebuked her husband. That right there is unscriptural. The Bible says in1 Timothy 5:1 "Rebuke not an elder, but entreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren;" However, it would have been more helpful to him if she had mourned with him, comforted him in their loss or, better still, prayed for him.
(Romans 12:10-15) Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.
So why did she say what she did? The devil was using her against Job as his secret weapon. Many men have felt the lash of the tongue in times of trial and tribulation when in fact these men should have been comforted by the prayers of their wives instead.
Perhaps this was the most upsetting thing that happened to Job. So he rebukes her. (Job 2:10a) But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh.
Now in those days it was a real slap in the face to be called foolish by someone, even more so for a woman to called that by her husband. Let's look at some verses.
David says inPsalm 5:4-5, "For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity." David is associating foolishness with wickedness and evil and sin. That's pretty strong stuff.
(Proverbs 9:13) A foolish woman is clamorous: she is simple, and knoweth nothing. Solomon says that a foolish woman is ignorant. He should know. He had more than a thousand women in his household. And not all of them were wise, I'm sure. No doubt he had to deal with some pretty petty things with some of them.
(Proverbs 10:14) Wise men lay up knowledge: but the mouth of the foolish is near destruction. Foolish people will destroy themselves.
(Proverbs 14:3) In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them. Foolish people are full of pride.
(Proverbs 29:9) If a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest. There is no reasoning with a fool.
Job, who possesses real spiritual discernment, gets to the heart of the matter when he says: (Job 2:1b) What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.
You see the mistake that most people make is that when something good happens to them they say it is from God therefore when something bad happens then it must be from the devil. That is not necessarily true.
God tests His children in many ways. There are times when we may have sinned and have not repented of it so God will allow something bad to come upon us in order to punish us. Then there are times when we are walking in the Spirit and in fellowship with God but He wants to know how much we love Him so He tests us. Will we love and praise Him only when we receive good things from Him or also when we go through trials and tribulations?
God created us for one reason only and that is to worship Him. (Revelation 4:11) Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. We were made for God's pleasure not the other way around. Let's stop being selfish and unthankful.
We should not get so attached to our material possessions that we start worshipping them. What do I mean by worshipping them? Cherishing them, idolizing them, putting them first in our lives. I am talking about money, jobs, homes, clothes, cars, friends, yes, even loved ones. Nothing but God should have first place in our lives.
The Bible says inMark 12:30 "And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment." We are to love God with every fiber of our being. Why? The Bible commands us to do it.
(Luke 16:13) No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. (see also Matthew 6:24)
What does Jesus mean by serving "two masters"? He is talking about spiritual things. He is talking about desiring the things of the world (Mark 4:19 - remember Eve) instead of desiring the things of God (Matthew 6:33). It could be walking in the flesh (Galatians 5:19-21) instead of walking in the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). It could be serving the devil (John 8:44) instead of serving the Lord (Colossians 3:24). It doesn't matter. The Bible says that it cannot be done. No matter what it is, you will love the one and hate the other. And the devil will do all he can to make sure that the things that he offers are what you will love and that he is the one that you will serve.
God doesn't force us to love him or to serve Him. He wants us to do it with the right heart attitude. The Bible says inJoel 2:13 "And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil."
What does God mean by this? The Pharisees were famous for putting on a show and playing at religion. Everything they did had to be done out in the open and in front of people and with a lot of pomp. That kind of "religion" does not impress God. He wants a right heart. He wants a teachable spirit. He wants a surrendered will. These are all things that only God can see. The Pharisees were full of pride. God hates pride. He wants us to be humble.
God commands us to love and obey and worship Him but He will never force anyone to do it. The person must want to do it because they love God. But, the devil has to force us to obey him and in some cases he makes it very easy to do.
Just like the devil used Eve the devil used Job's wife. But unlike Adam, Job did not go along with his wife's sin. Did Mrs. Job love her husband? Yes, I believe that she did. But as the weaker vessel the devil attacked her and she fell prey to his attack. She did not have the spiritual discernment to see that God was testing Job not abandoning him. (2 Timothy 3:6-7) For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
What can we learn from the life of Mrs. Job?
A person who lacks spiritual discernment isn't very close to God. Now Mrs. Job did not have a Bible but she had a godly husband. We have already read what God said about Job. But that is no excuse for her. Each person has to be responsible for his own spiritual growth. A good prayer life could have helped her.
There really is no excuse for this. The man is the spiritual leader in the family unit and should be upheld in prayer at the very least. Also, it was her duty as the wife to take care of her husband. (1 Corinthians 11:8-9) For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man. I know this doesn't seem fair but so what! It is what the Bible says and therefore what we, as women, must do.
(Ephesians 5:33) Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. Reverence is one of the highest forms of respect that you can show another person. What kind of reverence did Mrs. Job give her husband by telling him to curse God and die? Not very much!
Like so many who are in trouble they blame God instead of thanking him for their trials. The most important lesson we can learn from her is to be thankful in the bad times as well as in the good.
(Deuteronomy 4:29-31) But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice; (For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them.
(Romans 5:1-5) "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us."
(James 5:10-11) Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
(Philippians 4:4) Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Don't be like Mrs. Job. Be thankful.
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