Job 22 - Talk is Cheap
Job 22 1Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said, 2Can a man be profitable unto God, as he that is wise may be profitable unto himself? 3Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect? 4Will he reprove thee for fear of thee? will he enter with thee into judgment? 5Is not thy wickedness great? and thine iniquities infinite? 6For thou hast taken a pledge from thy brother for nought, and stripped the naked of their clothing. 7Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink, and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry. 8But as for the mighty man, he had the earth; and the honourable man dwelt in it. 9Thou hast sent widows away empty, and the arms of the fatherless have been broken. 10Therefore snares are round about thee, and sudden fear troubleth thee; 11Or darkness, that thou canst not see; and abundance of waters cover thee. 12Is not God in the height of heaven? and behold the height of the stars, how high they are! 13And thou sayest, How doth God know? can he judge through the dark cloud? 14Thick clouds are a covering to him, that he seeth not; and he walketh in the circuit of heaven. 15Hast thou marked the old way which wicked men have trodden? 16Which were cut down out of time, whose foundation was overflown with a flood: 17Which said unto God, Depart from us: and what can the Almighty do for them? 18Yet he filled their houses with good things: but the counsel of the wicked is far from me. 19The righteous see it, and are glad: and the innocent laugh them to scorn. 20Whereas our substance is not cut down, but the remnant of them the fire consumeth. 21Acquaint now thyself with him, and be at peace: thereby good shall come unto thee. 22Receive, I pray thee, the law from his mouth, and lay up his words in thine heart. 23If thou return to the Almighty, thou shalt be built up, thou shalt put away iniquity far from thy tabernacles. 24Then shalt thou lay up gold as dust, and the gold of Ophir as the stones of the brooks. 25Yea, the Almighty shall be thy defence, and thou shalt have plenty of silver. 26For then shalt thou have thy delight in the Almighty, and shalt lift up thy face unto God. 27Thou shalt make thy prayer unto him, and he shall hear thee, and thou shalt pay thy vows. 28Thou shalt also decree a thing, and it shall be established unto thee: and the light shall shine upon thy ways. 29When men are cast down, then thou shalt say, There is lifting up; and he shall save the humble person. 30He shall deliver the island of the innocent: and it is delivered by the pureness of thine hands.
Today's Scripture Meaning Eliphaz shows that a man's goodness profits not God. (1-4) Job accused of oppression. (5-14) The world before the flood. (15-20) Eliphaz exhorts Job to repentance. (21-30) Verses 1-4: Eliphaz considers that, because Job complained so much of his afflictions, he thought God was unjust in afflicting him; but Job was far from thinking so. What Eliphaz says, is unjustly applied to Job, but it is very true, that when God does us good it is not because he is indebted to us. Man's piety is no profit to God, no gain. The gains of religion to men are infinitely greater than the losses of it. God is a Sovereign, who gives no account of his conduct; but he is perfectly wise, just, faithful, good, and merciful. He approves the likeness of his own holiness, and delights in the fruits of his Spirit; he accepts the thankful services of the humble believer, while he rejects the proud claim of the self-confident. Verses 5-14: Eliphaz brought heavy charges against Job, without reason for his accusations, except that Job was visited as he supposed God always visited every wicked man. He charges him with oppression, and that he did harm with his wealth and power in the time of his prosperity. Verses 15-20: Eliphaz would have Job mark the old way that wicked men have trodden, and see what the end of their way was. It is good for us to mark it, that we may not walk therein. But if others are consumed, and we are not, instead of blaming them, and lifting up ourselves, as Eliphaz does here, we ought to be thankful to God, and take it for a warning. Verses 21-30: The answer of Eliphaz wrongly implied that Job had hitherto not known God, and that prosperity in this life would follow his sincere conversion. The counsel Eliphaz here gives is good, though, as to Job, it was built upon a false supposition that he was a stranger and enemy to God. Let us beware of slandering our brethren; and if it be our lot to suffer in this manner, let us remember how Job was treated; yea, how Jesus was reviled, that we may be patient. Let us examine whether there may not be some colour for the slander, and walk watchfully, so as to be clear of all appearances of evil.
Today's Scripture Application Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the Book of Job with Chapter 22. In our text today we see the third round of discussions as Eliphaz speaks but still doesn't listen to Job as he outlines repentance of which Job is not in need of. What catches my eye in all of this dialog is why wont his 3 friends help Job instead of giving advice. In making application we see that talk is cheap when a hand of help is needed. Yes, sin is sin and it is judged by God but our role is to restore the individual. If Job was truly suffering as a result of sin then his friends should of restored him first and preached to him later. How about you? Do you offer a hand first before you explain how they arrived in their position? Let us learn from our text today and the dialog of Job and His friends to remember that talk is cheap when a hand of help is needed.
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Sincerely, Dr. Dave Burnette Director, The United States Bible Society, Inc.