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Job 22:1-2



1 Then Eliphaz ['Eliyphaz] the Temanite [Teymaniy] answered [`anah] and said ['amar],

2 Can a man [geber] be profitable [cakan] unto God ['el], as [kiy] he that is wise [sakal] may be profitable [cakan] unto himself? KJV-Interlinear



1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite responded, 2 'Can a vigorous man be of use to God, Or a wise man be useful to himself? NASB



This will be Eliphaz's final say in the discussion. Eliphaz was the first of the three friends. His name means 'God is fine gold,' or 'God of strength,' with emphasis on the earthly nature of these meanings. Eliphaz is the most prominent of the three friends. His speeches demonstrate greater weight and originality. He is a Temanite, which means southerner. His arguments represent the best wisdom of the world. His wisdom is described as the result of ages of thought and experience, Job 15:17-19, of long and ripened study, 5:27, and he claimed the ability of revelation earlier in the book.


Despite his claim to wisdom, Eliphaz did not listen to Jobs words. And of the words he heard Job say, Eliphaz heard only what he wanted to hear. Thus the nature of his wisdom and interpretation of truth in the world.


And thus we will eventually discover that the wisdom of this world is just that, an acceptance of whatever is convenient or acceptable to the way we want things to be, rather than to how things really are.


Job has stated that his friends opinions, that the good people of the world are blessed and that the wicked are cursed for all to see, is not the way life is. That good people often times live a life of suffering, and that bad people will live a life of prosperity, even all the way to the grave.


And if you have any sense at all, then you know that this is a true statement.


Eliphaz, rather than listening to Jobs opinion, which is true by the way, does not look at any facts that Job could offer, but instead misinterprets Jobs comments with even further truths, which will be true, but will be distorted because Eliphaz is going to make wrong conclusions.


'What? Does God have a use for vigorous men? Does God make a deal with the wicked because He needs them? And therefore, does God in these deals, not punish them?'


And more than that. 'Does a wise man, one who is wise in the things of this world, make his own way through life? Does a worldly wise man, figure out how to live and coexist with God, to his own advantage?'


All of these rhetorical questions command a response of, 'No.' And so Eliphaz in his response, uses truths again, but he uses them in ridicule or mockery of Jobs comments.


Eccl. 10:10-11

10 If the axe is dull and he does not sharpen its edge, then he must exert more strength. Wisdom has the advantage of giving success. NASB


1 Tim. 4:8

8 for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. NASB


In this world, there are two types of wisdom. The first is academic wisdom, or it can even be called street smart. But whether from books or world experience, being smart can either get you ahead in life, or help you avoid problems. Crooks use this approach to get ahead by means of shortcuts and at the expense of others.


Non-crooks, or otherwise normal people, can use world wisdom to help them function in life, get an education, get a job, get ahead and so forth. Some people do this very well and some do not. World wisdom is good only for this world.


Then there is spiritual wisdom, which includes the opening up of ones eyes to the wisdom of the world as well as the wisdom of God. Spiritual wisdom is good for both now and forever.


In either case, does God need wise men? No. Can God function without wise men? Yes. Does God need either you or me? No.


Some people seem to do very well in life because they seem very smart or witty or they hustle in life. But for every man who is successful in life, you can go out and find a million that are not. Remember that there are only about ten-million millionaires in this world and seven billion that are not. That should tell you something.


But world wisdom, though it has its purpose, is nothing when compared to spiritual wisdom.


Eliphaz is still of the mind that the wicked, or the worldly wise, cannot have escaped suffering because of their making a deal with God, or that God has any need of them.


And in this, Eliphaz is correct in saying that God makes no deals, and that God has no need of people. But where he is wrong, is that just because a person lives their life apart from God, in this life, they will not automatically fall prey to His judgment, in this life.


Every person will die, and to some there will be a second death, and to others there will be an evaluation. God has his priorities and His plan. In the long run, no one gets away with anything. But just by being evil or street smart or academically smart now, does not means an automatic sentence of suffering in this life. Our study of Pharaoh should have made that clear.


Prov. 9:11-15

11 For by me your days will be multiplied, And years of life will be added to you. 12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself, And if you scoff, you alone will bear it. 13 The woman of folly is boisterous, She is naive, and knows nothing. 14 And she sits at the doorway of her house, On a seat by the high places of the city, 15 Calling to those who pass by, Who are making their paths straight: NASB


There will be those who will receive promotion from God, because of Gods word in them. Whatever you are, whatever you have, it all came courtesy of God.


Likewise, there will be those who seek to promote themselves by means of their own attitudes and beliefs (the boisterous female). In rejecting God, they over emphasize their own importance.


In either case, whether a person is for or against God in their life, all they are and all they have comes courtesy of God.


Humanity cannot drive history through his own ingenuity, talent, or ability. Humanity cannot control his own future. God does it all.


God does not depend on the mechanisms of humanity in order to accomplish His plans.

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End Of Lesson

Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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