Good Friends

In the story of Job, God allows Satan to strip a holy and blameless man of everything he has: his wealth, his family, even his health.  In the end, Job is found faithful and God restores to him everything he lost, and then some.

Like Job, most Christians have two or three good friends that give advice during difficult times.  While Job is lying in the dirt, scraping his sores, and wondering why God would do this to him, his friends come along and offer their counsel. Their message is basically that Job must have messed up considerably for God to punish him. Job defends himself by insisting that he is righteous and he had not failed God.

Let  me make this clear, Job’s friends are godly men, and each have a good understanding of theology. Their names were, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite. Each explained God’s vengeance on sin and their understanding of  God’s will. The three had good intentions but their counsel was flawed. Just because God had been known to punish sin, doesn’t mean that every bad event is a punishment.

Likewise, many seek financial advice from friends, while their friends have good intentions, their advice is often flawed. Often even Christian friends don’t give wise counsel. Finances can seem to be very complex and many give worldly advice by offering a secular world view of money. Even Christian friends can give secular worldly advice. So how do you tell the difference? Does the friend’s advice line up with God’s word?  God’s ways are always greater than our ways. His counsel is always perfect.  God’s financial principles are inverted as compared to the secular world’s approach to finance and possessions. Isaiah 55:8-9 tells us “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

The next time you receive and take advice from a friend, make sure the counsel is biblical and it lines up with God’s word.

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