Job 11 – Zophar But Not So Good!
This chapter will mark “The End of Round One”, since Job and all three of Job’s friends will have spoken at least once, with the friends concluding that God alone knows that there must be some secret sin in Job’s life, and that if only he will repent everything will be bright and wonderful!
Unfortunately whilst Zophar does say some true things, he accused Job of stating, “My doctrine is pure and I am clean in Your eyes” (v.4), although there is no record of Job ever having claimed this. But we can learn from this that although it should be our aim to get our doctrine right, it is important that our lives reflect what we believe. This is why “Orthodoxy must lead to Orthopraxy!”
Zophar also hoped that God would speak. But isn’t that what a lot of people would like to claim – that God told them this or that, which then simply becomes a subjective feeling. Would you rather go on what you felt God said, or what someone told you God told them to tell you, or with something more solid, such as some divine word. By the way, the last words the Greek Philiospher Plato, said were, “All the wisdom of this world is but a tiny raft upon which we must set sail when we leave this earth. If only there was a firmer foundation upon which to sail, perhaps some divine word.” And yet here we believers are with God’s Word in our hands or on our phones or computers – if only we would believe it!
In the end, as we conclude Zophar’s counsel, though he does warn of judgement to come, he has misdiagnosed Job’s situation, since Job is not at fault (See Job 1:1; 2:3). But also he presents the wrong solution because he depicts turning to God in repentance as something that will result in the wonderful life saying, “…because you would forget your misery…your life would be brighter than noonday” etc.
In reality, Jesus died on the cross to forgive our sins and give us His righteousness, and promised that there would be great things in store for us “with persecutions” (See Mk.10:26-31). So hopefully the story of Job can prepare us for all the ups and downs of the Christian life!
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