“You are miserable comforters” (v. 2). In essence, Job said, “You are unaware of how you are presenting yourselves . . . you don’t understand yourselves.” Hence the sarcastic term Job’s Comforter (J.C.) has come down to us as one who means well, but makes matters worse by authoritatively talking about what he does not understand (I Timothy 1:7). A J.C. is orthodox but unloving …his “truth” a hammer, not a balm. He smiles while swinging his club . . . preaches hot Hell while seeing himself as loving and imagining himself to be God’s gift to the sufferer. EliBilPhar did not realize this about themselves.
Here’s a checklist to prevent us from becoming Job’s Comforters:
1. Has the person I am itching to instruct been honestly confronted in a humble manner? Did the person understand what was said to him such that a re-statement would be an unwelcomed re-run?
2. Am I genuinely listening to his explanation?
3. Since we all practice “selective hearing / memory,” does this person need a reminder of what was said to him weeks (months) ago? Scripture allows for going back an amazing 7th time on the same day, to the same offending person (Luke 17:4, II Peter 1:12-15).
4. Am I stretching for support? That is, do I find myself reasoning like this: “Others share my opinion, but they do not have the strength and will to tell this offending person to his face, so the dirty work is up to me.” Also, ask yourself, “Am I in danger of becoming a messenger boy for someone else’s gossip?”
5. Have I prayed for six weeks about this?
6. Am I trusting God to teach this person on His timetable, or am I trusting my logic, force of personality and determination to bludgeon the offender into conformity now?
7. Have I reached the point that I believe the person who angers me is “undermining piety” (15:4) and that he is “wicked,” meaning unredeemed (15:20), as Eliphaz had concluded?
8. Do I equate my words and thoughts as God’s (15:11)? Am I starting to view myself as God’s best or only remedy?
If the above characterizes what I am thinking, I am well along in the application process to become a Job’s Comforter.