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~ Day One ~
No Other Name
The Book of Job ~ Chapter One
"Then Job arose, tore his robe,
and shaved his head;
and he fell to the ground and worshiped.
And he said: "Naked I came from my mother's womb,
and naked shall I return there.
The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away;
blessed be the name of the LORD."
(Job 1:20, 21)
Our Sovereign LORD

As we embark on our journey through the book of Job these next 45 days, the Lord would have us gain a new perspective on human suffering through the eyes of His servant who displayed extraordinary faith in the face of overwhelming tragedy and loss. Life is challenging, and the battles we face, particularly as Christians, are not easy. There is a very real enemy who roams around like a roaring lion seeking whom he can devour, who wants us to suffer and aims to destroy our faith in God (1 Peter 5:8). Our sovereign Lord knows the trials that lay ahead of us and our need for patient endurance as He grants permission and allows adversity for a season to accomplish His greater purposes in and through our lives. He puts a limit on our trials, just as He puts a limit on the enemy's reach into our lives; and He is not obligated to explain His actions. He purposes these dark nights of the soul to deepen our relationship with Him and bring us to the place of humility and trust in His sovereign grace and power. "Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord - that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful" (James 5:10).

"Therefore we also, since we are surrounded
by so great a cloud of witnesses,
let us lay aside every weight,
and the sin which so easily ensnares us,
and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
looking unto Jesus,
the author and finisher of our faith,
who for the joy that was set before Him
endured the cross, despising the shame,
and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself,
lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls."
(Hebrews 12:1-3)

While our Great High Priest ever lives to make intercession for us (Hebrews 7:25), our Adversary never halts his hostility toward us, and his accusations before the throne never cease. He strives to destroy the testimony of God's faithfulness, but throughout our journey this season we will learn that God is sovereign and the Adversary can only touch us if God permits it. Whenever the sovereign Lord permits the pressure of adversity it is never outside of His control. He allows pain for a purpose as He is perfecting us and making us more like Jesus Christ, so that the life of Christ will be manifested in our body (2 Corinthians 4:7-11). In this season, as we feast upon His Word and spend intimate time with the Lord in prayer, may we begin to see His hand more clearly at work in our lives accomplishing His purposes and fulfilling His divine will and plan. The Lord desires to restore our vision to the revelation of His Sovereign rule, as He did for His servant Job (Job 42:5), and bring us to the place of repentance, so that we can experience full restoration and power that we so desperately need to withstand the battles we face. A saint wrote: "When Christians stop looking for the solution in mere external things and instead aim to being bound together to the throne of God by unceasing devotion to Jesus Christ and in unceasing prayer for the power of God's Spirit, the Church will put on her beautiful garments, and put on her strength, and overcome the world!" May we take the time each morning to humble ourselves before the Lord as Job did and begin our day in praise, as we bless His holy name and yield more fully to His sovereign control in our lives. "Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together" (Psalm 34:3)

"Seeing then that we have a great High Priest
who has passed through the heavens,
Jesus the Son of God,
let us hold fast our confession.
For we do not have a High Priest
who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses,
but was in all points tempted as we are,
yet without sin.
Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy and find grace
to help in time of need."
(Hebrews 4:14-16)
Read: Job Chapter One

"There was a man" who lived during the time of the patriarchs; a man who was abundantly blessed with wealth, family, reputation, and health. He was "blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil" (v. 1). The first five verses of the book of Job paint him as a man of prosperity, purity, and prayer, but the pages that follow pen the sad story of the one whose name means "persecuted." Between the altar of sacrifice where Job regularly made offerings and intercession for his children and the throne room of heaven where his fragrant offerings were received by the Lord, "there was a day," when a conversation occurred that would forever change the course of Job's life, as the Lord praised His servant Job in the presence of the heavenly council, which was interrupted by the Adversary who couldn't bear to hear any other name be praised but his own.

"Then 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, one who fears God and shuns evil?"
(Job 1:8)

The angelic servants who do God's will report to Him, including Satan, who seeks to undo God's will. The Adversary is free to roam about the earth and still has access to the court of heaven, where he comes to accuse the saints on earth (Zechariah 3:1), until the day when he will be cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10). "Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side?" (vv. 9b, 10a). Satan stood in the courtroom of heaven and attempted to destroy the testimony of God's faithful servant by accusing Job of an ulterior motive. While Job worshiped and prayed on earth, he had no idea of the greater spiritual battle going on in the heavenly realm between the One who alone is worthy of worship and the evil one who wanted nothing more than to rob God of all the worship that is due His Mighty Name. "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Ephesians 6:12). The Lord knew His servant's heart, and so He gave Satan permission to touch all that Job had in order to prove the purity of his worship. And Satan wasted no time! "Now there was a day" (v.13) when Satan did all that he could to provoke Job to curse God, and in a single day Job was stripped of all his livestock, servants, and children! Blow after blow came, without warning, and without revelation of the private courtroom debate. In one day, Job was taken from the heights of prosperity to the abysmal depths of pain, but instead of wallowing in self-pity and cursing God, as Satan had predicted, Job fell on his face and worshiped! "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD" (v. 21). When all that he had was taken from him, Job clung tightly to the One who couldn't be taken from him. "Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:37-39). The enemy's plan to provoke Job to run from God backfired on him! The Lord permitted adversity in Job's life to fulfill His greater purpose - to bring glory to His holy name! Today as we consider our responses to our present circumstances and past trials, let us repent of those responses that dishonored Him and pray for deepening trust in the sovereign Lord who is always with us and using all things for our good and His glory!

"Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God,
that He may exalt you in due time,
casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Be sober, be vigilant;
because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion,
seeking whom he may devour.
Resist him, steadfast in the faith,
knowing that the same sufferings are experienced
by your brotherhood in the world.
But may the God of all grace,
who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus,
after you have suffered a while,
perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.
To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
(1 Peter 5:6-11)
"LORD, I know that You can do everything,
and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You."
(Job 42:2)

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A Blessing for Rosh Hashanah
The Feast of Trumpets

L'shanah tovah tikateivu v'teichateimu
(may you be inscribed and sealed (in the Book of Life) for a good year)

On Rosh Hashanah it is written. On Yom Kippur it is sealed.
May it be written and may it be sealed
as we inaugurate this new season that the year ahead
will be filled with greater joy and blessings
as we seek the Lord with all our hearts.
Read about 2020
The Year of Divine Government
IF My people will humble themselves
and PRAY
A Pandemic Prayer Proclamation
Read more HERE
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