And so it was, after the LORD had spoken these words to Job, that the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is aroused against you and your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has. Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and My servant Job shall pray for you. For I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.” So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did as the LORD commanded them; for the LORD had accepted Job. And the LORD restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before. (Job 42:7-10)
When He Prayed For His Friends
The more you read the book of Job the more you are amazed at the character of this man. There is great worth in what Jehovah said about His humble servant: “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” Job was the most amazing of people. He honored God in his days of goodness and trusted in Him in the nights of darkness. The tragedies that befell him challenged his faith in ways few can even imagine. He struggled. He fought hard to understand. But a large part of his suffering came not from his body but his three ‘friends’ who sought to give him counsel. With friends like that who needs enemies.
When it was all over and Jehovah spoke to Job out of the whirlwind this humble man repented of his words and thoughts. Then the remarkable continues to happen. The Lord demands Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar to make sacrifices as Job prays for them. As the three make penance for their actions the man who suffered the most is praying for them.
What a life lesson for me today. I need to pray for those that frustrate me and even anger me. It is easy to strike out at people like that but Job shows a humble heart of prayer. His friends could not be blamed. They were trying to help but did not know how. I have tried to help others and struggled to know how. I hope people pray for my failings.
Jesus is the Master example of praying for everyone. He taught us to pray for our enemies but sometimes we need to pray for our friends who are trying but probably not doing a great job. As with Job we will receive a greater blessing when we have a heart of humility in prayer. That is one of the most wonderful feelings of talking to God. Thank you Father for letting me speak to you about my friends.
Our motive for prayer must be the divine will, not our own. (D. Laurence Scupoli, The Spiritual Combat, 1843)