"His wife said to him, 'Are you still holding on to your integrity? Curse God and die!' He replied, 'You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?' In all this, Job did not sin in what he said." - Job 2:9-10

Encourage Others. Who, Me?

Something that simply cannot be emphasized enough is that one of Satan’s great tools is discouragement. For if the devil can get us discouraged, we will often turn on God. We can see this happening in the book of Job; the devil is attacking Job with catastrophe after catastrophe, and there seems to be no hope of any relief. So what advice did he get from those who loved him the most? Look at his wife’s response, “Do you still hold fast [to] your integrity? Curse God and die!”

Now before you judge Job’s wife too harshly, understand this: the toughest temptations we face in life will sometimes come through people who love us the most. That’s because these people have genuine concern for us and don’t want us to hurt. So, oftentimes, they urge us to take the easy way out – man’s way. The devil knows this and enjoys using those who love us to lead us into temptation and out of the will of God. Jesus certainly experienced this when Peter urged Him not to talk about going to the cross. Jesus knew the source of Peter’s thinking and responded angrily, “Get out of here, Satan!”

That’s why Christian spouses and friends have an incredibly important responsibility. When we see a brother or sister in Christ facing a crisis or temptation, we must avoid inadvertently becoming a pawn of the evil one. We must realize that we must help the loved one fight the temptation to take the easy way out, or to give up, or to give in. Become your loved one’s partner in his or her difficult struggle and patiently encourage them to do things the Lord’s way – even when it’s the hard way – because His way is always the best.

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