Job 1:1 There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job, and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil.
Job 1:22 In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
Job 2:11-13 Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that had come upon him, they came each from his own place, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. They made an appointment together to come to show him sympathy and comfort him. (12) And when they saw him from a distance, they did not recognize him. And they raised their voices and wept, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads toward heaven. (13) And they sat with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word to him, for they saw that his suffering was very great.
Job’s friends seem to have gotten off to a good start. They had concern about him and came to him. They kept their mouths shut for a week and it appears that they had genuine compassion for him.
But then they spoke….
Job 4:3-8 Behold, you have instructed many, and you have strengthened the weak hands. (4) Your words have upheld him who was stumbling, and you have made firm the feeble knees. (5) But now it has come to you, and you are impatient; it touches you, and you are dismayed. (6) Is not your fear of God your confidence, and the integrity of your ways your hope? (7) “Remember: who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off? (8) As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same.
Essentially their philosophy was much like the current day nouthetic counselors – “Job, it all comes back to your own sin.” They also threw in a large portion of health, wealth, and prosperity theology. You do good and God blesses you. You sin, and God punishes you. Simple as that.
John Calvin in his sermons on Job cuts these “friends” no slack. He says that the devil starts it all and then sends his emissaries to continue the attacks. Accusing, blaming, shaming, all with false doctrine which is disguised as “thus saith the Lord.”
People really need to keep their mouths closed much more than they do. In arrogance, they insist that they know it all – even though they have no idea what a RASN has put the victim through. Their ignorance and ill-treatment of the victim is detestable to the Lord. And more, it is sin against God Himself because they are falsely representing Him.
Beware, then, of people who come to you and have an answer to just about anything. They come claiming they care, they understand…but inevitably the “advice phase” begins. Counsel given out of arrogant ignorance is just plain dangerous and damaging. The church today is plagued with legions of these kind – “The Church of Job’s Friends.”
Don’t go there.