Thank God for the Hedge! – Pastor Stacey Shiflett

Thank God for the Hedge!

Job 1:10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.

Intro: This morning we are going to look at the middle of chapter 1. The word that we are going to examine today is mentioned only once in this entire book. But this word plays a major part in this story.

The word of the day is “hedge” in verse 10.

I. A Devilish Obsession – vs. 7 “From going to and fro in the earth and walking…”

  • I Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

The devil is busy searching for people to destroy.

He knows his time is short, and he’s working overtime.

He walks up and down throughout the earth.

He walks through our city, our town.

He walks through your neighborhood, your street.

He’s got one thing on his mind.

Your utter and complete destruction.

  • John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…

There’s not a moment of the day that Satan is not trying his best to destroy you.

He will use anything and everything he possibly can to do it.

He will use family members, friends, neighbors.

He will use your job, your finances, your fun time.

He will use your cellphone, your laptop, your computer, your TV.

He will use lost people, church people.

He doesn’t care about you or your happiness or your dreams.

All he cares about – all he is concerned about is one thing – destroying you.

  • If you are lost, he will do everything he can to get you to die in your sins and spend eternity in hell.
  • If you are saved, he will do everything he can to rob you of your joy, your testimony, your fellowship.

He will work 24/7 – non-stop, every hour of every day.

He will do everything within his power to wear you down, break you down, pull you down.

II. A Distinct Observation – vs. 8 “Hast thou considered my servant Job, there is none like him…”

There is a record of a clear fact – Job was under observation.

He was under intense scrutiny.

               A. A Delightful Observation – vs. 8

I love how God asked Satan if he had “considered” Job.

I’m glad to know that I have a God that considers me.

It is clear from verse 8 that God had been observing Job.

God was bragging on Job to Satan.

God was testifying about Job to Satan.

Notice God’s Delightful Observation:

  • God called him “my servant.” – this speaks of Job’s SERVICE.
  • God said, “there is none like him…” – this speaks of Job’s SUPERIORITY.
  • God said, “a perfect man” – this speaks of Job’s SOUNDNESS.
  • God said, “an upright man” – this speaks of Job’s SPIRITUALITY.
  • God said, “and escheweth evil.” – this speaks of Job’s SANCTIFICATION.

               B. A Disturbed Observation – vs. 9 “Doth Job fear God for nought?”

The devil knew him. By name.

Satan’s logic led to him to believe that Job feared God because of what God had done for him.

What a statement!

People that do not fear God are not people that do not have a reason to fear Him.

They simply either do not KNOW what He’s done for them, or they do not CARE.

  • Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
  • 1 John 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.
  • Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

The devil knew that Job feared God because of all that God had done for him.

Of course, the devil wouldn’t understand that.

He has never done anything FOR anyone.

The Devil has never blessed anyone, or loved anyone, or been good to anyone.

He doesn’t understand the relationship God has with man.

III. A Divine Obstruction – vs. 10 “Hast thou not made an hedge about him…”

               A. The Source of the Hedge – hast thou not made…

The hedge was not made by man.

The hedge was not made by his parents, or his spouse.

The hedge was not made by the pastor or the church.

The hedge was made by God.

               B. The Scope – about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou has blessed the work of his hands and his substance is increased in the land.

What an amazing verse.

Satan knew that God had put a hedge up around not only Job, but his family and all that he had.

Satan knew that it was God’s hedge of protection that had allowed Job to be blessed and successful.

               C. The Success of the Hedge

Satan admitted something vital in this passage.

He acknowledged that he could do nothing to Job as long as that hedge was there.

With all his experience and all his tactics, he was powerless to do anything to Job as long as that hedge was there.

The Bible is clear – 1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

Conclusion: God lifted the hedge in this chapter to accomplish several things.

               A. To Prove Job’s Faithfulness – 1:12; 2:6

Satan told God that Job would curse Him to his face.

God told Satan that Job wouldn’t.

There was only one way to find out.

Lift the hedge and allow Job to be tested to prove Job’s faithfulness.

The lifting of the hedge proved Job’s faithfulness to God, to Satan, to Job’s wife and Job’s friends.

               B. To Purify Job’s Faith – 23:10 But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.

Job knew that even gold can be purified. Silver can be purified.

Though he was perfect and upright, feared God and eschewed evil, there was room for improvement.

Job had enough confidence in God to know that the trial he was facing would reap benefits.

He believed that no matter how bad it was, he would “come forth.” He would survive. He would make it.

               C. To Promote Job – 42:12 “So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning…”

God had already blessed the work of Job’s hands and his substance was increased 1:10.

But God wanted to do more for Job.

He wanted to bless Job more than he’d ever been blessed.

So God lifted the hedge.

But it was only temporary. It was only for a short time.

Thank God for the hedge!