Job 8:1 Then answered Bildad the Shuhite, and said,
2 How long wilt thou speak these things? and how long shall the words of thy mouth be like a strong wind?
3 Doth God pervert judgment? or doth the Almighty pervert justice?
4 If thy children have sinned against him, and he have cast them away for their transgression;
5 If thou wouldest seek unto God betimes, and make thy supplication to the Almighty;
6 If thou wert pure and upright; surely now he would awake for thee, and make the habitation of thy righteousness prosperous.
7 Though thy beginning was small, yet thy latter end should greatly increase.
8 For enquire, I pray thee, of the former age, and prepare thyself to the search of their fathers:
9 (For we are but of yesterday, and know nothing, because our days upon earth are a shadow:)
10 Shall not they teach thee, and tell thee, and utter words out of their heart?
In chapter 8 we meet with the second false theologian who is against Job. Bildad did not like what Job was saying. He could not tolerate Job’s words any longer. He too used the analogy of the wind in verse 2. He accused Job of being like a strong wind. Job was having an impact on these men and they did not like it. A strong wind moves things around. It dries things up. It can stir up the dust. It rustles the leaves in the trees.
In verse 3 Bildad asked a rhetorical question. God does not pervert judgment. He does not pervert justice. There was no perverted justice taking place here. There was a perverted theology being promoted by these three friends. They assumed they knew God better than Job did. God had already declared that Job was a man who was upright and feared God. Job had a true relationship with God. These men assumed that they knew God. They assumed that they could get Job out of his current situation very quickly, if he would just do as they said.
In verse 4 they accused his children of sinning against God and thus they were gone. They assumed they were killed as a judgment from God. They did not know what his children were doing. This is rather obvious from their assumptions about him. They were long-distance friends. They did not have enough to do and took it upon themselves to be the “peacemakers” of the region. They had heard of Job’s troubles and decided to come and tell him how to fix the problem. They loved to meddle.
In verse 5 Bildad counselled Job to seek unto God. In his mind, Job needed to repent. The word translated as “betimes” speaks of “early”. Bildad declared that Job should have repented long ago and this would never have happened to him.
There are many accounts in the Bible of prophets that God sent to rebuke ungodly people. God is not against sending one of His servants to help sinners to turn to Him. The point here is that God did not send these three friends. They took it upon themselves to go and visit Job. They were shocked by what they saw as they drew near to him. They spent seven days in silence as they mulled around in their minds what they believed they needed to say to him.
Now they had their cannons loaded and they were going to hit Job from different angles, but always with the same message.
As we will continue to see in this book, it is important to know the Lord first of all. Then it is necessary to walk humbly with Him. These three friends did not know what that meant. Job revealed some faults as a result of this suffering. The suffering did not come due to his faults. It came as a result of Satan’s accusations against God.
In verse 7 Bildad stated that Job should have been increasing in wealth and material blessings over time. Due to his “sin” this was not happening. Again we see that in his mind God’s children will always do well in life.
In verse 8 Bildad suggested that Job should look back at history and he would see that Bildad was right. If a person puts on selective glasses and only looks at the part of history that suits him, then he will see what he wants to see. We have said before that Job could have been a contemporary of Abraham. He would have had some history he could look back upon. We are not given very much detail of that history. We know of the fall and of the development of the ungodly through Cain’s descendants. At the end of Genesis 4 we read that men began to seek the Lord at that time. This came after the birth of another son that God gave Adam and Eve after the death of Abel.
We have also seen the wickedness that filled the earth by the time of Noah. God destroyed all but eight people and many animals in a worldwide flood. The topography of the earth was changed and the climate was changed as a result of the flood.
We have seen that both Abraham and Lot were wealthy men. They both increased greatly in earthly possessions. God blessed Abraham in many ways, but Lot had children long before Abraham did. Lot made some bad choices and they cost him severely. Abraham had possessions and finally a son, but he never owned any land. He sojourned in the land of Canaan, but he died with a parcel for a burying ground.
Bildad chose selective memory to try to support his bad theology. He suggested that according to his view of history, the righteous are blessed of God and the ungodly are not. In verse 9 he reminded Job that life is so short. In our short lifetime, we really do not learn much. However, Bildad suggested that if we look at history we can learn much.
It is true that we can learn much from history. God gives us true history that we can learn from if we trust in the Lord. The sad reality is that Bildad and his friends had not learned anything of value in their short lifetime, nor in their view of history.
In verse 10 he assured Job that history does not lie. It will teach the truth. It certainly does when we look at it from God’s perspective. We have been reminded several times of God’s view of history during Job’s lifetime. He saw a much different picture of Job than these three men did.
There are many theologians who develop their theories based on what Job’s three friends had to say. They come up with a completely false theology but they are able to convince many people to believe them. The only hope is for a person to believe what God says. Don’t let smooth talkers and gainsayers deceive you into believing a lie. Take a close look at what God has to say. Of course this will require you to know the true God. If you scoff at His word you will not find the truth. If you are willing to listen to the truth, then you can be helped.
Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.
God gives us much food for thought in the book of Job. He contrasted the thinking of fallible man with that of the righteous and just God. Job was fallible, but he was not off course as his three friends were. They were completely off base. It is important to keep that in mind as we look at this book. As we go through life, we need to seek to know God and humbly submit to His will and allow Him to teach us the truth. His Word is truth.