The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised. Job 1:21
The timing couldn’t have been worse. After making a small fortune engineering bridges, monuments, and large buildings, Cesar had aspirations of starting a new endeavor. So he sold his first business and banked the money, planning to reinvest it soon. During that brief window, his government seized all assets held in private bank accounts. In an instant, Cesar’s lifesavings evaporated.
Choosing not to view the injustice as a cause to complain, Cesar asked God to show him the way forward. And then—he simply started over.
In one awful moment, Job lost far more than merely his possessions. He lost most of his servants and all his children (Job 1:13–22). Then he lost his health (2:7–8). Job’s response remains a timeless example for us. He prayed, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised” (1:21). The chapter concludes, “In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing” (v. 22).
Like Job, Cesar chose to trust God. In just a few years he had built a new business more successful than the first. His story resembles the conclusion of Job’s (see Job 42). But even if Cesar had never recovered economically, he knew his real treasure wasn’t on this earth anyway (Matthew 6:19–20). He would still be trusting God.
How did you feel when you experienced your greatest loss? What is the Holy Spirit showing you about your losses?
Dear God, please teach me something about Your love today. There’s so much I don’t understand.
Job is one of the oldest books of the Bible. The mention of the nomadic Chaldeans (1:17) and that Job lived 140 years after his testing (42:16) suggest he lived in a patriarchal era like Abraham’s (around 2000 bc). In this setting, wealth was measured in terms of livestock and slaves instead of gold and silver (see Genesis 12:16; Job 1:3; 42:12).
The apostle James singled Job out as an example of persevering faith (James 5:11). Job’s challenges encourage us to have an authentic faith in God even in the face of pain, suffering, and death (Job 1:20–22; 2:10).