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An Appointment Together

Job 2:11 (ESV) — Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that had come upon him, they came each from his own place, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. They made an appointment together to come to show him sympathy and comfort him.

Do you have friends you can go to if everything in your life collapses? Or an even better question is: do you have friends who will come to you when everything in your life collapses? We need community in a desperate way. We are not made to live out the Christian life on our own strength or without help.

Our passage today shows what the posture and attitude of true community should be. Notice that when Job’s friends learn of his misfortunes and tragedy, they each left their homes and went to Job. They sought him out. And the text says they made an appointment together to come show him sympathy and comfort him. Now, before I unpack that sentence, I’ll note that we often give Job’s friends a hard time because their advice and counsel to him wasn’t always correct or the right timing. But I want to highlight the positive aspect of the fact that they came to him. That is what true community looks like. 

They made an appointment together. These guys consulted with one another to visit their friend Job. We need a tight-knit community that has that kind of relationship together. When one in the group is down, the others in the group can rally together to provide for them. Their aim was to go show him sympathy and comfort him. They wanted him to know they cared about him. They wanted to show their friend their sympathies. It is important to know that others care about our lives. It encourages us to know that people grieve and mourn with us in our pains. Not only did they want him to know that, but they wanted to tangibly provide him some kind of comfort. Most of the comfort they sought to give him was advice and counsel. That is certainly one way we can comfort others. We need folks to remind us of the truths of God when we are overwhelmed with burdens. We can also meet physical needs for them to help lift other burdens in their lives. Do you have this kind of community? Are you this for any other people?

Reflection & Journal:
- What are some things about Job’s friends that are commendable about their response?
- Why do most Christians not have these kind of people in their lives?
- What are ways that we can comfort the hurting around us? What practical helps can we offer?

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