When I think things are rough, all I need to do is read the book of Job. This man was the greatest of all the men of the east, and he had it all together with seven sons, three daughters, and 11,000 sheep, camels, and oxen. (Job 1:3)
‘Sounds like his children were well off too: “And his sons went and feasted in their houses, every one his day.” (Job 1:4)
We all know the story: Job lost his children and all his livestock.
It was essential to have children — the more, the better, especially sons.
Job’s wife has been looked down on by many for several thousand years, but I believe she got a bad rap.
Have you ever wondered how she felt? She gave birth to all these children and her “social security” was taken away. Who will take care of them as they age? As well as their father’s seed dying, leaving no one to carry on the family name. If that isn’t bad enough, she watched her husband suffer, wishing he’d never been born. She said,“Dost thou still retain thine integrity? Curse God, and die.” (Job 2:9)
Before we jump on the bandwagon and attack Job’s wife, let’s look at the Hebrew word for “curse:” Barak [H1288] in Strong’s Concordance — “A primitive root; to kneel; by implication to bless God (as an act of adoration), and (vice-versa) man (as a benefit); also (by euphemism) to curse (God or the king, as treason)….”
She knows and agrees, Job has integrity with God. Let’s not forget, Job wished he had never been born. We don’t seem to hold that against him. Mrs. Job is struggling too. Maybe you have had a glimpse of what she is going through. You have seen someone you love struggle with health so badly, death would be welcomed. If she said, “Barak (Hebrew word for “bless God”) and die,” I can see where she is coming from. If you bless and worship God and die, it would be better than what you are facing right now. I don’t see that Job’s wife doubts his innocence; I feel she agrees with him and acknowledges it.
Yet his friends are saying he sinned because of what has happened to him.
If he would “barak” (bless) God and die,he would still be in good standing with God. However, if he would curse God and die, he would be guilty, and she would struggle, being a Hebrew whose husband had sinned. Leaving her a widow meant not getting the same benefits according to the laws. So, Job told her she spoke as a foolish woman. He knows God is just. Both are at the lowest points in their lives.
In the last chapter of Job, we read how God rebukes Job’s friends, but not his wife. I would think (dangerous!), he also did not divorce her, or he would not have received all his blessings and more children in the end. I don’t see where God blamed or accused Job’s wife of any wrongdoing. Strange how we don’t even know her name. God gave him seven more sons and three more daughters. He didn’t list his sons’ names, but this time, he named his daughters. He was also blessed with more than double what he had before.
“Thou shalt know also that thy seed shall be great, and thine offspring as the grass of the earth. Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age, like as a shock of corn cometh in in his season. Lo this, we have searched it, so it is; hear it, and know thou it for thy good.” (Job 5:25-27)
God will never leave you; he will see you through. Even if no one else knows your name, God does.