A Devotional Journey
led by Dr. Gene Pearson
Thru the Bible in a Year
At this point in the story, even Eliphaz (who has been the most sympathetic) turns against Job. He charges Job with being longwinded
(15:2) but is later criticized for the very same thing by Job (16:3). Perhaps asserting his own importance, Eliphaz condemns Job for presuming to understand the workings of God’s court in heaven when in fact he is no better than any other elder or sage.
While this friend insists he and the others have merely shared words from God
it is clear he has made some cruel insinuations
(in chapter 5), and that his co-counselors have as well. The comfort which he asserts should be accepted by Job is hard to see.
Eliphaz’s key point
, however, is that the wicked are punished. In holding to this view the wicked do not prosper, he remains free to reject the more perplexing possibility: that the righteous suffer.
Job’s response summarizes a great deal: “You are all miserable comforters !”
His point is well taken: helpful advice is most often brief and encouraging, not longwinded
and judgmental! Job sees himself, for whatever reason, as God’s target
and despairs of ever living long enough to prove his case on earth, but, perhaps, in heaven he will finally have the chance. Throughout the argument, Job’s dominant desire is to stand before God and make his appeal – a position he could only take if he still had some degree of faith in God’s fairness. However that may be, Job ends up in a long description of the depression he feels.
Do you ever miss the wisdom someone else might provide
by presuming they are no better
than you and therefore unqualified to advise? Is wisdom only found from those with pedigrees? If we did not think of it ourselves, does that make it any less significant or valuable?
Do you ever find yourself insisting
on the way we have always done it
, and unwilling to consider a new idea or insight into how life should be lived? We have all missed some of the best advice and most helpful insights because we stubbornly insisted already knew
how things were and did not need any more insights than we had.
Today, decide you are going to look for wisdom in unexpected places.
Then pay attention and see how many and varied are the opportunities to learn and grow through the insights of other people. Pray that God will show you some aspect of your own thinking that needs an update
. Sometimes for us, as for Job, our closest friends are not necessarily our best advisors.
© A. Eugene Pearson 2010