He was the ideal man—
and so concerned with holiness that he made sacrifices for sins that might have been committed by other people (i.e., his children, cf., Job 1:1-2, 5).
No wonder God was especially pleased with Job, twice saying that no one else on earth was like him (1:8; 2:3). Consequently, God supremely blessed what Job did. But not everyone was convinced of Job’s piety.
One day the angels gathered in God’s presence. The Accuser (or Adversary)—whom some identify as Satan—also appeared as a kind of prosecutor. When God pointed out righteous Job, the Accuser asked a question:
“Does Job fear God for nothing?” (1:9)
That’s the key question for the whole book. Why did Job fear God? What was his motivation?
The Accuser thought Job was serving God for the earthly blessings:
“Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land” (Job 1:10).
It was fake, all fake. Of course Job was pious—God had made him phenomenally wealthy!
So the Accuser proposed a test: take away Job’s stuff, and see what happens:
But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” (Job 1:11).
So God accepted the bet and allowed the Accuser to take away all of Job’s blessings in a nightmarish fashion. His animals, servants, children, homes, and even his health were all taken away, leaving Job with nothing but his wife, his life, and a body covered in boils. But did Job curse God? No.
“In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong” (1:22; cf. 2:10).
Job did fear God for nothing. His faith and devotion to God did not depend on the blessings He received from God. In other words, Job loved God for God’s own sake. It was a “disinterested” love.
God won the bet!
What about you? The question asked about Job’s faith, could be asked of yours: do you fear God “for nothing?” Do you love God for God’s own sake? Do you worship Him because of Who He is, or merely because of what He can do for you?
Is He the goal of your earthly life, or merely the means for you to have a comfortable life on earth?
Put another way: do you have a God or a genie?