“by the God (El) of your father who will help you, by the Almighty (Shaddai) who will bless you with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that crouches beneath blessings of the breasts and of the womb.” Genesis 49:25
The passage above is the blessing that Jacob was giving to his son Joseph while on his deathbed. We know that Joseph and Benjamin were the sons that Jacob loved the most because they were sons he shared with Rachel whom he loved more deeply. That love was possibly more compounded in Jacob because Joseph was the son he thought he had lost. He wanted Joseph to know the strength, the blessings and the sufficiency of El Shaddai.
Shaddai is mentioned in the Bible 48 times. Seven times it is mentioned as El Shaddai with five of those being in the book of Genesis. Then in the book of Job Shaddai is mentioned 31 times. You know the book of Job has always seemed to me to be about the pain and suffering of Job. For years I almost couldn’t read it at all because of the sadness and the pain of it. But the more I have read it and studied it, the more I have come to realize the book is more about the sovereignty of God than it is the suffering of Job.
In the book of Job Shaddai is used in many references.
He is the God who chastens men. (Job 5:17; 6:4; 23:16; 27:2)
He is a just God. (Job 8:3; 34:10).
God hears prayer. (Job 8:5; 22:26; 27:10)
His power cannot be resisted. (Job 15:25)
He is the God who punishes the wicked. (Job 21:20; 27:13)
And the God who rewards and protects those who trust Him. (Job 22:23, 25; 29:5)
The God of providence. (Job 22:17, 23; 27:11)
And the God of foreknowledge. (Job 24:1)
He gives to men understanding. (Job 32:8)
And life. (Job 33:4)
He is excellent in power, in judgment, in justice and we cannot fully know Him. (Job 11;7; 37:23)
The book of Job can tend to be a hard read. As Christians we tend to think if God loved me so much why does he allow suffering in our lives. Job was someone the God was proud of yet he allowed Satan to inflict much suffering on him. Job lost everything he had, his wealth, his children, his health, yet He still hung onto the only one he knew could see him through.
Friends we were never promised that if we followed Jesus that we would have rosy lives and that there would be no trouble. In fact Jesus said it in the book of John.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
He says it right there that there will be trouble and tribulation. We see in the book of Job sometimes it is brought about by nothing we did to cause it and we know that sometimes it is our own poor choices. But what we can always cling to no matter what is the sovereignty of God, and the peace that Jesus gives us to deal with the day to day junk of life. Our El Shaddai is sufficient! He is enough for us to walk whatever is in front of us.