Eliphaz in the room: Aren’t you Eliphaz in someone’s suffering?

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy. – James 3:17

When someone is suffering, it’s common to want to try to comfort that person with phrases like, “this too shall pass” or “it was for the best.” Have you ever been grieving and had someone tell you that you probably did something to deserve it?

Job’s friend Eliphaz did just that when Job was suffering. Using the argument that no man is so good that they don’t deserve the bad that happens to them. That did not help Job; instead, they heaped judgments on their friend.

Nothing of what was said about God was technically wrong, but the application is where they went astray. They repeatedly ignored Job’s pleas that he did nothing wrong and discounted his relationship with God. At the end of the book, the Lord rebukes Job’s three friends and repays Job twice over.

Don’t be the Eliphaz in the room when someone is suffering or grieving. Lend your ear, your time, or your prayers, but not judgment or unwarranted advice