As Job's children gather to celebrate, the bad news begins to flood in. First the oxen and the donkeys: all that would plow the fields and make it productive, his source of produce and nourishment gone. Next it is the sheep: for fleece and meat, his source of clothing and sustenance gone. Then the camels: his means of travel and trade of surplus goods, his source of income and wealth gone. Finally, his children: who would have been the heirs of his labor but after this tragedy perhaps they would have been the strength and help for rebuilding, but no, they too are gone, along with all of his servants.
Job has lost nearly everything. His earthly possessions, his source of income, and his very children. Surely Satan has won. How could God (especially a just and loving God) do this? Why should I worship a God who cannot keep me from tragedy such as this? But not Job. Naked I was born and naked I will die, blessed be the name of the Lord. Maybe there is hope for humanity's relationship with God. I don't just love him because I'm blessed with many treasures. At least I've got my health, I woke up and drew breath this morning, I'm glad to be alive.
I guess it's time for Satan part II. Organisms are designed to survive. Of course a righteous man can bear losing everything without cursing God, skin for skin, he's still just interested in saving himself, even in tragedy he wouldn't risk that by cursing God. But touch his body, take his health, take his comfort, and you will see. This man of yours is only yours because of what he gets in return.
Is it so? Maybe I can release my treasures, but deep inside, do I long for God out of a sense of self-preservation and survival instinct? Perhaps Job has an answer.
The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger."
Then Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.
One day when Job's sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house, a messenger came to Job and said, "The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby, and the Sabeans attacked and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, "The fire of God fell from the sky and burned up the sheep and the servants, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, "The Chaldeans formed three raiding parties and swept down on your camels and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, "Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house, when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four
corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said:
"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."
In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.
On another day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them to present
himself before him. And the LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?"
Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless
and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason."
"Skin for skin!" Satan replied. "A man will give all he has for his own life. But stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face."
The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life."