Today’s Reading:Job 31:1-33:33(additional reading: Psalm 43:1-5 and Proverbs 22:8-9)
Elihu had kept silent for quite a long time because Job’s friends – “were years older than he” and he wanted to give them the respect that age deserved in dealing with the situation. He respected the age of the others involved in the debate. He allowed those with more experience to speak first. He stood back listened and watched the whole encounter. But then he could hold back no more.
Elihu now says that he will do his part. He lets everyone know that he is full of words. He is so full of words that his belly is ready to burst like just like a wine skin that new wind has been placed into and stretches as it ferments. He can hold it back no longer – he must let it out.
Have you ever heard someone say, “I just say what’s on my mind.” As if they are proud of it. This was Elihu. But what if there mind is in the gutter? What if there is not much on their mind? What if what they’re thinking is mean and nasty? It is better to say nothing than to say something stupid, rude or crude. The Bible tells us in Ephesians: “Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word (is) a gift.” Ephesians 4:29 (MSG)
Elihu becomes very angry at the whole situation – so much so that the he speaks for six chapters. Notice that four times in this section it is mentioned that Elihu responds with “wrath”. It is not that he was just angry – he was furious. You can tell a lot about the character of a person by how they get angry.
How would you like to be known as a person of anger? Maybe you are! Maybe some of those you know tell others to stay away from you because, “you have a hot temper.” You get angry because the leaves fall from the trees in the fall – so now you have to rake them up. You get angry because the wind offers a gentle breeze to cool you – yet it messes up your hair. You get angry because on your day off it rains and ruins your plans – even though you have been in drought and it has not rained in weeks. Remember the verse in Ephesians – Each word is a gift! Use your words for good and not for harm.
Do you watch what you say?
What does is mean to be an angry person?
Father, Thank You that You gift us with so many things. Help us to guard our words and to use them not for harm but for the building of Your kingdom here on earth. In Jesus’ name, Amen