June 24, 2017
“The Invisible Curtain”
Not many people like to spend time in the Book of Job in the Bible. But there are some huge insights in it.
There is a lot going on in our visible world around us that leaves us troubled, confused, and with many questions. The story of Job takes a peek at what is happening behind the curtain in the invisible universe. There may be more questions than answers for a while, but Job starts building a basis to answer questions we have had no answer for before.
By faith you and I believe and understand that the universe was created by the Word of God. So the “something” that you and I see, the “something” that you and I live in, the “something” that you and I touch every day with our five senses wasn’t created by nothing unless you are a staunch evolutionist who doesn’t believe in God and everything just popped into place and ran smoothly ever since.
As Christians we believe Hebrews 11:3 “ By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.”
Ponder that a moment. That means that everything we see that is visible to us was created out of what was invisible. In other words the invisible world gave birth to the visible world!
If the invisible world created the visible world then the invisible world is bigger & more powerful & important or prominent than our visible one.
Now look at the grandeur of what God speaks to us through the Apostle Paul in Colossians 1:16: “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him.”
I don’t know about you, but that tells me that GOD IS BOTH IN CHARGE AND IN CONTROL.
With that in mind look around us and think about all the horrible junk going on in the world…or better yet the pain and agony you have experienced at times in your life that makes no sense to you.
What, where, how, why has this come upon me? What did I do?
Let’s take that peek behind the curtain of invisibility and use Job as our example. Job 1: 1-22.
“There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job, and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil. 2 There were born to him seven sons and three daughters. 3 He possessed 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen, and 500 female donkeys, and very many servants, so that this man was the greatest of all the people of the east. 4 His sons used to go and hold a feast in the house of each one on his day, and they would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. 5 And when the days of the feast had run their course, Job would send and consecrate them, and he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, “It may be that my children have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did continually.
6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7 The Lord said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” 8 And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” 9 Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? 10 Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11 But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” 12 And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord. Note that satan tried to get God to do the attack & hurt but God says NO, you touch him.
13 Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, 14 and there came a messenger to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, 15 and the Sabeans fell upon them and took them and struck down the servants[a] with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” 16 While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants and consumed them, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” 17 While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “The Chaldeans formed three groups and made a raid on the camels and took them and struck down the servants with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you.” 18 While he was yet speaking, there came another and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, 19 and behold, a great wind came across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young people, and they are dead, and I alone have escaped to tell you.”
20 Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. 21 And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”
22 In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
After Job has lost everything he speaks out of his humanly perspective from our side of the curtain of invisibility in verse 21. The Lord didn’t take it all away! The adversary did. But, like us today also this is his perspective from this side of the curtain.
The issue is that God trusted Job’s faith and allowed it to happen.
Like Job, God puts His trust in us also!!! I don’t know about you but that boggles my mind!
Instead of looking at things this way all too often we get into a guilt syndrome that we must have deserved it from some sin we did and God’s punishing us.
The trouble with that theology (or view of God) is while there are times when it is true, most of the time it isn’t.
Have you ever been in a children’s leukemia ward? Or, were 11 of the 12 disciples martyred for sin? No, they died for their faith and righteousness.
Take these things to heart always:
- We don’t live in a neutral universe. Things are bad because people’s hearts are bad. People need salvation and a changed heart.
- There’s mystery in the evil we see & from the invisible world too.
- There is a place in our lives for lament. 2/3 of Psalms are lament.
- There is a difference between lament & complaint. Lament worships with wounded faith. Complaint is faithless and self-centeredness.
- Our faith is very important to our Father. Only trust will carry us to a good end. Only 1 & 2 year olds know how to trust easily.
By the way, if you want to go further, in chapter two of Job things get far worse for him as God allows satan to attack Job’s health also. But Job passed this horrible testing by satan too …just like we can also with our own faith and God’s help.
There is a lot more to be said about this subject but we do not have time; so please check out our actual video of the message at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqxAECs5ORI
You can check out the Bible Project video about the book of Job at: https://thebibleproject.com/product/read-scripture-job-video/
Church On The Hill, Salem, Oregon
Pastor Bruce Stefanik & Pastor Jason Treadwell