Zophar speaks a second time to Job. He joins his friend Bildad in labeling Job wicked and describes in detail the wicked’s portion.
Zophar isn’t as spot on in labeling the miseries that have befallen Job as Bildad was. He stays with more of an overall picture of what becomes of a wicked man. In short, he is wiped from history. I’m here to tell you, that’s not quite true. Genghis Kahn, Napoleon, Hitler, and even Cain are all famous for their acts of wickedness. There are many more but these ones stick out in my mind.
Something that caught my attention was that Zophar said he had to speak out in haste. In truth, that is what he was doing. He wasn’t taking the time to consider that maybe Job had a point. He was so certain HE knew the answer that he couldn’t wait to share it with Job. And his answer was, “Job, you are a wicked man who is being punished by God for his sins. EVERYONE knows that this is how things work. It has ALWAYS been this way: the reign of the wicked is short and ‘the joy of the godless but for a moment’ (verse 5b).”
In his statement he called Job both wicked and godless. This put him in agreement with Bildad who said Job had known not God. So he too was saying that he had been fooled the whole time he knew Job. For he came rushing to Job’s side because Job was a good friend and a righteous man.
When Zophar describes the wicked he spends a lot of time on what the man ‘consumes’. The man he is describing is one whose spirit is hungry and can’t be satisfied. The wicked man is looking in the wrong places for his ‘food’. The wicked man is filling himself with greed and hungering for power. The more he gets the more he wants. He is never satisfied. Those things turn to poison within him. Nothing is good enough or lasts very long. And this IS how it is, even today.
The wicked may prosper for a while and look like they have everything anyone could ever want, but there WILL be a cost for their actions. Zophar is right in saying that God has decreed disaster for the wicked. He may not see it on this side of the grave but you can be CERTAIN he will see it on the other. “Utter darkness is laid up for his treasures; a fire not famed will devour him” (verse 26a). Eternal judgment and separation await the wicked. If you have any doubts, read the story of the rich man and Lazarus again.
Zophar thinks Job’s condition confirms this law. But he is acting in haste and judging on what he sees at this point in time alone. He is discounting all Job’s previous actions and calling them a scam. If it were so, Job would REALLY be wicked.
Wait for it Zophar. The big reveal is on the way! You will see how your “haste” has led you astray.
So, what things should we be ‘consuming’ instead? First on that list is God’s word. There is no evil in it, other than what the characters in some of the stories display. God’s word is truth and food for the soul. God wants us to hunger and thirst for His word. Funny how both the godly and wicked are both hungry. But while the wicked’s choice of ‘food’ to stave off his hunger leaves him empty, our hunger when fed by God’s word brings strength to our bones. We are satisfied by out ‘meal’ and look forward to the next one with anticipation.
The second thing on the list is fellowship with God. This is through prayer and spending time with Him, in just being in His presence. Songs of praise and worship bring me there better than ANYTHING else. I used to play praise songs on my flute and be transported right into His presence. I can’t play anymore but singing and signing the songs bring me there just as fully.
After these two critical ‘foods’ comes ‘dining’ on the things around you that glorify Him. Choosing friends who also love the Lord. Attending a church that follows His truths, INCLUDING the fact that Jesus is the ONLY way to salvation. Looking for uplifting books, movies, television shows. Even a good jigsaw puzzle that glorifies one of his stories is good for me.
One last but crucial ‘food’ is putting feet to your faith. Loving, helping, giving, sharing, teaching, and doing the things that Jesus would do if He were still walking this earth. Being God’s hands and feet to a hurting world is MORE filling than winning the lottery. MORE rewarding than ANY accolade man can bestow. And will survive into eternity where it will be counted by God for you.
Father God, help me ‘feast’ on the right things. I enjoy television shows that are not spiritual. I like a lot of the crime dramas that focus on catching the bad guys. I like reading mysteries too. I DON’T like the ones that use foul language or use explicit scenes. Our world has even started twisting some of the shows I used to enjoy to where they are calling good bad and bad good. Help me have the strength to weed those ones out of my life permanently.
Thank You for making me hungry for Your word. It used to be a struggle to come every day, but now it is harder NOT to come sit with You. I feel empty or incomplete if I don’t get to spend time reading and writing each day. Thank You for making it a joy. Thank You for always meeting me here and helping me find something for my life today too in Your word. Thanks for making it real. I’m looking forward to tomorrow! I’m REALLY looking forward to Job’s ‘ah-ha’ moment.