Job 4:17 Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker?
18 Behold, he put no trust in his servants; and his angels he charged with folly:
19 How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth?
20 They are destroyed from morning to evening: they perish for ever without any regarding it.
21 Doth not their excellency which is in them go away? they die, even without wisdom.
It is very interesting to note how Eliphaz framed his argument. He was a hypocrite who acted as though he was in close association with God. In the previous verses he went so far as claiming he had received a vision from God. He may have had a vision, but he did not receive it from God.
He was trying to suggest that Job was guilty of secret sins and that he had tried to act in a self-righteous way.
The reality that we are given in the first two chapters of this book is that Job was a faithful and humble servant of God. He was not guilty of secret sin. He was not acting in self-righteousness. Job was the target of Satan. Satan wanted the opportunity to break Job. God had confidence in Job. Job was a child of God. God blesses His children. He does not make them robots. He enables them to follow Him and to be faithful in spite of the attacks of the devil.
In verse 17 we see that mortal man is not more just than God. Eliphaz made a true statement. What he failed at is that Job was not claiming to be more just than God. Eliphaz was claiming to be more just than God. He claimed to have an inside track to God that was in contradiction to what God had already said in the first two chapters of this book.
Job never claimed to be purer than his maker. Job was frustrated and in despair. His physical and emotional sufferings were wearing him down. He refused to curse God and die. He did wish he had never been born. However, he did not claim to be better than God. What Job needed was some friends who would pray with him and encourage him in the ways of God. That is why Jesus Christ established the true church in the New Testament. True local churches are places where saints can come together for fellowship and the preaching of God’s Word. True saints are also there to pray for one another.
Job did not have that benefit at this time. His friends were not godly. His children and his servants were all gone. His wife was not seeking to glorify God in her life.
In verse 18 Eliphaz claims that God put no trust in the angels. There were certain angels that fell with Satan. They are not trustworthy. However, God has many good angels that serve Him faithfully. The angel announced the birth of Jesus Christ. The angels joined in praising God when that announcement was made. Prior to that, the angel of the Lord had spoken to Mary about the birth of Jesus Christ. The angel of the Lord also spoke to Joseph about the birth of Jesus Christ and how he should respond to this matter. Obviously God trusted His servants to do His will.
He charged the fallen angels with folly, but not all the angels. Eliphaz conveniently changed the truth in order to fit his plan. Based on that fraudulent move, he then stated that God does not trust man either. However, God raised up many true prophets to give His Word to the people. God also appointed kings to rule over His people, Israel. Eliphaz was like many snake oil salesmen who stand in pulpits today. They spin a yarn that the gullible grasp at.
Job was not such a man. He knew some things about God. He did not fall for these lies. It is true that man is very fragile. The Bible tells us that we are like the flower of the grass.
I Peter 1:24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:
Man is dependent upon the Lord. I spoke with a man recently who wanted to argue that a Christian can lose their salvation. He used some of the old and warn out arguments to try to support his view. I asked him to show me from the Bible that what he believed was true and he could not do that. He could not do that because it is not true. He wanted me to believe his lie but he had no Biblical authority to support what he believed and what he wanted me to believe.
It is true that a true child of God will live for God. A person who claims to be saved and loves his liquor or his drugs or whatever sinful habit he or she may have, simply proves they are not saved. God delivers His children from the bondage and power of sin. Christians sin, but they do not live in habitual sin. The love of God indwells them and they are motivated to seek after God in truth.
The true child of God is held in the Father’s hand. He is not left floundering on his own. Job was not left to fight for himself. His possessions were gone and his health was challenged. However, his life was still in God’s hands. The devil would never be able to destroy that because Job was a child of God. God protects His child(ren).
Eliphaz continued his argument in a vacuum. He had this vision which did not come from God. He developed his philosophy from thin air. He believed it or at least he was trying to convince himself that what he was saying was true. He tried to convince Job that his lies were the truth.
It is true that many people die without wisdom. Eliphaz appears to be one of them. He chose to reject God’s wisdom. He chose to take counsel from his two friends and they came at Job with their own humanistic views. It is good to know that Job did not fall for their deception. He knew better. There were things that Job would need to learn about God, but he knew enough not to fall for the lies of these men.
Eliphaz was chosen to start the attack. God shows us the standard attacks of His enemies. The devil had Eliphaz and his two friends right where he wanted them. He could employ them for his evil work. He was not successful against a true child of God. God recorded their false views to help us to see the tactics of liars. We can know the truth once we are saved. We have a sure Word of God. We have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We do not know everything, but we can know enough to remain faithful and true to the God Who saved us. We can refute the lies of those who choose to serve the devil.
Today is the Lord’s Day. You have the opportunity to go to a true Bible-believing church to hear the Word of God preached. Don’t miss out on this important opportunity. If there is no Bible-believing church in your area, then drive to where there is one or move to where there is one. Don’t take the approach that Solomon described. Don’t argue that there is a “lion in the street”. It is true that good churches have gone bad in the past. There will be good churches that will go bad in the future as well. If God’s people would be faithful to Him in praying for their pastor and for their church, God could work to protect His Work. When God’s people become careless, things fall apart. A true church is built upon the Lord Jesus Christ. A true church is maintained by continuing to build upon the Lord Jesus Christ. If a church turns away from the Lord Jesus Christ, it cannot stand.
The apostle Paul asked the saints to pray for him. He asked them to pray that he would be bold for the truth. The apostle Paul finished strong. He encouraged Timothy to do the same.
In the book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ, Jesus addressed the needs of seven local churches in Asia. He pointed out what the need was and what the solution was. He directed His Words to the pastor of each church. They were responsible, under Christ, for the sound direction of the local church. Jesus Christ does not command us to do things that are not possible. They are possible in Christ.
For those that are saved, as a child of God, do your part according to God’s Word. Trust God to do the work needed to keep the local church true to Him. Exalt Him and rejoice in His blessings.