We tread in dangerous waters when we act like Elihu and his friends, who decide to judge Job’s situation for themselves. Elihu tells the truth about God, that He is just and perfect in all of His ways. But how, then, does Elihu come to the wrong conclusion about the reason for Job’s suffering? The tragic mistake Elihu makes is interpreting the work of Satan as the work of God.
As we gather with God’s people to support, help, teach, and correct each other, we must seek the Spirit and Wisdom of God in doing so. Otherwise, we end up misunderstanding where God is working, and where He isn’t. While Job is suffering because of Satan, Elihu is so sure that God is punishing Job for an unknown transgression. How ironic! Elihu says that God’s justice is perfect, but decides to judge things for himself instead of seeking God. Even though he knows of God’s righteousness, Elihu does not know all the details of Job’s situation.
Have we ever been like Elihu? Have we ever wrongly judged a person or wrongly assessed a circumstance thinking we were so sure about what was going on? While there is room for forgiveness for our mistakes, there is also damage that can be inflicted when we do what is right in our own eyes. For Job, Elihu’s words only add to the suffering that he is experiencing. Among God’s people, this should not be. We are only doers of His Will when we remain unsatisfied by our own inclinations. We are only Christ-like supporters, helpers, teachers, and correctors when we allow ourselves to be first supported, helped, taught, and corrected by Him.