Thursday, April 26, 2018

Year 8, Day 116: Job 22

Theological Commentary: Click Here

Once more we get to see an example of human wisdom at work.  Don’t get me wrong.  Human wisdom can have some good points.  Human wisdom, however, doesn’t equal divine wisdom.  Human wisdom cannot have the same universal applicability as divine wisdom.

For example, look at what Eliphaz says in Job 21:22.  “Agree with God and be at peace, thereby good will come to you.”  At first, it sounds like a great quote.  Agree with God and be at peace.  When we are aligning ourselves with God, we are going to be at peace with God.  That portion is absolutely true.  That’s why the wisdom sounds great.

The problem is that it isn’t universally applicable.  Am I at peace when I agree with God?  At peace with God, absolutely.  Am I at peace with the world?  Actually, the more I agree with God, the more likely I will feel like sandpaper to the world!  Of course, peace with God is greater than peace with the world.  Eliphaz’s advice is still good in that perspective.  Agreeing with God is generally a good thing, so long as we understand that we will be at odds with the world.

There’s another problem with this piece of advice.  If it was just about peace, it would be conditionally good advice.  The problem is that it uses something that sounds good to draw an even bigger conclusion.  Peace isn’t the issue for Eliphaz.  What Eliphaz’s advice truly is about is the reward.  What Eliphaz is saying is that if we agree with God, we’ll be at peace because we’ll get what we want.  That’s the issue with this advice.  It’s prosperity gospel.  It’s about getting.  The primary goal isn’t peace with God.  That’s the bait to make us feel like the advice is good.  This advice is about equally relationship with God to living the life we want to live.