Job 4:1 – 5:27
Eliphaz, friend number one, began to speak to Job.
👉 First, he confirmed what we have been told about Job – that he was a righteous man (v 4:3-4).
• you have instructed many
• you have strengthened the weak
• you upheld others with your words
• you made firm the feeble
👉 Then, Eliphaz seemed to question Job’s response to his trials (v 4:5).
• are you impatient
• are you dismayed
• where is your confidence
• where is your hope
👉 Eliphaz’s understanding of God seems to be (v 4:7-21):
• the innocent don’t perish
• the upright aren’t cut off
• reap what you sow
• man can’t be in the right before God
👉 Eliphaz did something that we often do – he equated pain with punishment (v 5:17).
We see this similar mindset in John 9 when, seeing a man blind from birth – the disciples asked Jesus, “Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
I love Jesus’ answer. “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
Pain is not always punishment. Sometimes, it is an opportunity to display the power of God. To show to a watching world that we believe the things we have said about God. To live out in our pain what we have preached to others in their pain.
👉 Eliphaz’s praises of God (v 5:9-16)
• does great and marvelous things
• waters the earth
• lifts the lowly
• frustrates the crafty
• saves the needy
• gives hope to the poor
👉 Eliphaz seemed to believe that, if Job would accept his current trials as punishment (v 5:20-26), he would:
• be redeemed from death
• not fear destruction
• experience peace
• have many offspring
• live to a ripe old age
Eliphaz said some good things. He recognized Job’s good deeds and listed some true things about God.
But, as one commentator said, “Eliphaz had no right to judge Job’s response because he had no understanding of his pain.” And, I would add, he certainly had no right to speak on God’s behalf regarding the “why” behind the pain.
This is a good “how not to comfort your friend” passage. 😉