“You say you can’t see him, but he will bring justice if you will only wait.”
From mouths of babes. You know, I’ve studied and read through Job a few times, and each time, I’ve been told that Elihu and Job’s others friends are not very good friends at all and that their words are the epitome of doubters by whom we often are surrounded today. But I’m seeing something different as I read through this on my own with the Holy Spirit guiding me: I’m seeing normalcy. I’m seeing a conversation between four friends that is totally believable, and perhaps more importantly, reasonable. And young Elihu points out some pretty good stuff, like the fact that God has His own timing, and justice will win because God always does. Elihu may sound to some like a young and dumb know-it-all, but to me, he sounds like a young man who has been listening and learning. Is he a little cocky? Yes. Will he need to learn a few hard lesson about diplomacy and respect for his elders down the line? Yes. Is he saying what the rest of us are thinking? Yes. And that last one is a good thing. He’s calling Job out for his shortcomings, and maybe Job needs to hear that. Maybe Job isn’t as righteous as he thinks he is. And maybe God chose him – not for his flawlessness – but for his deep-seated flaws that only his friends are brave enough to point out. Maybe that’s the whole point. Remember what God said to Satan way back in Chapter 1? “Have you considered my man, Job?” Because God chooses Job, we automatically think Job is blessed with some special quality that the rest of us don’t possess, and that is often the way the Book of Job is taught. But even if Job is perfect in every way and even if his heart is clear of any wrongdoing … HIS FRIENDS STILL DON’T SEE HIM THAT WAY! It doesn’t matter what he does or how he acts because he hangs out with other sinners, and that alone qualifies him as a sinner, too, in others’ eyes. But who are they to judge? And that is also what Elihu is saying here. He is saying everyone is a sinner – even Job, no matter what he says – and only God gets to say which sins are actually sins … because the only person who truly knows sin … is the ONE who’s glory is based on sin.
Elihu doesn’t know Job’s sin anymore than Job knows his own sin … and vice-versa … to infinity.
Writing prompt: flawless
Do you believe in flawlessness?