Miserable comforters?

Scripture reading for May 22: Job 15-17

Isn’t it amazing how we can see the faults of another person and feel that we know the answer to their problems and the cause!  Theologians and students of the Bible can get proud about what they know and forget that they are studying God’s heart and His way.   Job’s friends again attack his character and accuse him of a lack of understanding of God.  (Job 15:3-5)  Job was told that his sin has caused his mouth to be crafty and deceitful.  He was accused of being impure and therefore under God’s wrath. (Job 15:30) They were ‘miserable comforters’ and took the role of ‘accuser’ of their brother!

Job’s response to these new accusations was to label his friends “miserable comforters”.  (Job 16:2)  Job needed encouragement and understanding.  He needed someone to pray with him and seek God’s help and answers.  Job was in despair over these latest accusations and the trouble he was experiencing.  He wondered why God had broken and crushed him.  He was depressed but in faith stated that his Advocate was also on high and his Witness was in heaven.  (Job 16:19)  Job seemed to know that although his physical body was broken, God still knew him, loved him, and would help him.

As I think on this passage, I realize that I have been the “miserable comforter” to some.  Sometimes it is easy to have glib answers and quote standard Bible texts.  God wants us to have His heart of compassion for the hurting and downcast.  We must listen to them and hear their heart.  Sometimes this alone is the best thing we can do.  We must seek to let the Holy Spirit speak through us and address the real needs.  What is on the surface is not always the real issue.  My prayer today is that I would be sensitive to each hurting person that I encounter and that God would use me to be a true friend!

James 1:19 “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God,”

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