God Uses People Warts and All
So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did what the Lord had told them, and the Lord accepted Job's prayer. And the Lord restored the fortunes of Job, when he had prayed for his friends. And the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. Job 42:9-10
Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus, but Paul chose Silas and departed, having been commended by the brothers to the grace of the Lord. And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches. Acts 15:39-41
The focus of the book of Job has been on his experience of tremendous affliction as evidence to Satan of how a redeemed man serves God whether he prospers or suffers. Job stood the test and we can all cheer at the end when God reveals Himself to that poor beleaguered man. God is vindicated by Job whose mouth is shut in humility. Job has been in our focus, but the three friends of Job were also under God’s watchful eye. They were in line for some discipline. They had spoken foolishly and ignorantly. Job was exonerated, and they were rebuked. God told Eliphaz to make an offering for their sin and promised to hear Job’s prayer on their behalf. Eliphaz obeyed and he, Zophar, and Bildad were restored to the Lord.
Paul and Barnabas left Jerusalem unified. They preached and taught the congregation in Antioch. Everything was going smoothly, but then they had a disagreement about taking John Mark on a second missionary journey. They split up going in different directions. How did they do? Both seemed to have fruitful ministries. Paul, we learn later, had a change of heart about John Mark (Colossians 4:10; Philemon 24; 2 Timothy 4:11). Indeed, Peter later would refer to Mark as “his son” (1 Peter 5:13).
Think about it
God works through human instruments. He used Job, Paul, Barnabas, and Mark despite their imperfections. Others, named and unnamed, were blessed by their prayers, preaching, teaching and other service for God’s glory. Can God use you? Yes, indeed. He uses all of His people for small and great purposes. Be alert to the service He has for you today.
© 2017 John A Carroll Used by permission