Sunday, January 8. Job 14 – 17

    The second round of conversations begins as the first, with Eliphaz.  He has nothing new to add, so he just speaks louder – or at least with greater indignation.  He accuses Job of being full of hot air, arguing with useless words and causing, with His speech, lesser men to lose faith.  That’s what he means with “you undermine piety and hinder devotion to God” (15:4).

    Again, no one is listening.  Job says: “I know as much as you” (13:2) and Eliphaz says “What do you know that we do not know (15:9).

    When Eliphaz first spoke, he claimed his words were “revealed” to him.  Bildad followed up by saying “everybody knows what we are saying is true.”  Eliphaz now claims the authority of the scholars, “what wise men have received from their fathers” and he insists that evil men cannot escape the punishment of God.  His implication is that Job is an evil man, as evidenced by his suffering.

    You just want to shake everybody and say “no, no, no, none of you know what’s going on.  You don’t know the full story!”

    And there is a lesson for us all.  Some things cannot be explained – or at least, the truth is simply beyond us.  A louder voice doesn’t make us right.  Our ability to crush others doesn’t make us right.  Better to admit we don’t know the answers and be quiet.  Unfortunately, pride just prevents that from happening.