Job 22:1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said,
2 Can a man be profitable unto God, as he that is wise may be profitable unto himself?
3 Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect?
4 Will he reprove thee for fear of thee? will he enter with thee into judgment?
5 Is not thy wickedness great? and thine iniquities infinite?
6 For thou hast taken a pledge from thy brother for nought, and stripped the naked of their clothing.
7 Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink, and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry.
Job faced an onslaught of false accusations and false counsel. He is introduced to us as a wealthy man who walked in the fear of God. He was attacked by the devil in various ways until he was left with nothing and even his health was affected. Job did not understand what was happening to him and why. He blamed God but he still wanted to talk to God about what He was doing.
Job’s three friends acted as though they knew God, but they proved to be completely out of touch with the true God. This is quite typical of false teachers. We have many of them in our world today. They claim to know God and they will even quote Bible verses. Most of the time they are quoting from a perversion, which distorts the truth. Interestingly, unlike Job, most people fall for the lies of the false teachers. They like what they hear. They prove their spiritual blindness in accepting the lies as fact and rejecting the truth as lies.
Eliphaz began by asking whether God is profited by man. God does not need man and no man can teach God anything. Those who are saved have the privilege of serving God, but we can only serve God properly when we yield to His authority over us.
In verse 3 Eliphaz asked whether God, the Almighty, is pleased with righteous people. The fact is that God is pleased with righteous people.
Psalm 11:7 For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.
Proverbs 15:9 The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the LORD: but he loveth him that followeth after righteousness.
Righteousness comes from God. A righteous person is one who knows the true God and serves Him faithfully. Of course, God would be pleased with such a person. God created man to glorify Him. When a person is saved and walks in the fear of the Lord, they glorify God. He takes pleasure in that.
Job did not make himself perfect. He was nothing without God. It was his faith in God that made him a just man. He eschewed evil because he knew the true God and thus he hated evil.
In verse 4 Eliphaz continued his rhetorical questioning. Job never suggested that God should be afraid of him. Job also never suggested that God needed to become a partner with him in judgment. God did not need to consult with Job in what he did. Job had some concerns over what was happening to him. He wrongly assumed God was the cause of his troubles. He did not understand that the devil had the power to inflict pain and loss upon a God-fearing person. He did not understand God’s ways and needed to be humbled to accept God’s authority over all things. Eliphaz had no ability to help Job see things properly. God would intervene and show Job his need to humble himself before the Almighty.
In verse 5, Eliphaz began to accuse Job of what he assumed the problem was. Again, the problem was that Job was wicked. He was not just a little wicked, but his wickedness was great. His sins were never ending. According to Eliphaz, there was nothing good to be found in Job. Eliphaz claimed that Job had demanded a pledge from his brother for nothing. He assumed that Job had not sold anything to his brother or done anything for him, and yet he demanded some form of surety from him. He accused Job of extortion. He had no proof for that, but he and his friends had been grasping at straws all along, and I suppose they figured if they kept shooting at him, something would stick. They were wrong.
Eliphaz stated that Job had stripped the naked of their clothes. He accused Job of being without mercy and without any compassion. Again, no evidence to back this up, but it must be so.
In verse 7 he accused Job of not even being willing to give water to the weary. How low can a person go? Water was an inexpensive commodity. Anybody can give someone else water to drink. Yet according to Eliphaz, Job was withholding this from the weary. He would not give bread to the hungry. Job was certainly an evil man, according to Eliphaz. As Job had stated before, he might as well mock on.
It is sad when someone accuses another person of crimes without being able to substantiate anything that is said. We have apps now that people can download that can develop a false profile of a person, accusing them of things they never did.
We know that long before these types of apps were around, Jezebel was able to hire vain people to accuse Naboth of things he never did. She then had him killed so that her husband could have Naboth’s vineyard for free. That vineyard was anything but free. The cost of that vineyard was far beyond what Jezebel could pay. Her glory days were short lived.
Eliphaz and his friends would soon find out the high cost of their ranting. There are warnings here for those who want to make God into someone He is not. There are reminders to those who know the Lord, that there are wicked people all around us who love to make false statements in the name of God. We can also be encouraged to know that God does not miss out on anything. He will take care of it all in His time. We can trust Him fully.