Saturday, July 7, 2012

Job 4

Today's reading in our daily plan is Job 4. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • In this chapter Job’s friend, Eliphaz, finally speaks up.
  • It’s interesting that Eliphaz’s response sounds right compared to Job’s
  • “wrong” speech. Job’s talk was “wrong” because he wished the day he was born never happened. But we will see that Eliphaz’s response, while sounding right, has subtle flaws in it.
  • Eliphaz admits that Job was a righteous man but then hints that no man is ever really righteous and therefore his suffering must be attributed to some unseen sin Job had committed. This accusation of wrong on Job’s part is the flaw in Eliphaz’s response because remember Job was tested by Satan because he was righteous.
  • Furthermore, in verses 17-21, Eliphaz reveals what he believes about God. Eliphaz believes that God is uncaring; more specifically that God does not care about human beings any more than he would care about an insect. Eliphaz saw man as almost zero in God’s eyes. Eliphaz was not only arrogant in his words to Job but also ignorant of God. Eliphaz suggests that Job had in some way done something evil and he was being punished for it; a thought that surely Job had already been wrestling with. But since we have an outside view of the story we know this wasn’t true at all. And Eliphaz believes God doesn’t really care about humankind. He even suggests that to God the death of a flawed human (which we all are) would be of little or no consequence.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • Eliphaz's ideas about God couldn’t be further from the truth which God later demonstrates through Jesus’ death to provide an avenue to restore his relationship with humankind. Clearly, Eliphaz was wrong on these accounts but if we were honest we probably think the same things when we go through tough times. 

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • We think to ourselves maybe we’re being punished or worse God just doesn’t care at all about us. This couldn’t be further from the truth. No matter what you’re going through right now know that God loves you and wants to be there with you through your painful times.