Your words have supported those who stumbled;
you have strengthened faltering knees.
But now trouble comes to you, and you are discouraged;
it strikes you, and you are dismayed.
“Who guards the guardians?” This question was asked by supposedly Juvenal the Roman Poet. It has since then been used to refer to marital and political issues among other applicable places. This seems to be what is on Eliphaz’s mind as he addresses his friend Job.
Our text, today contains the words of Eliphaz the Temanite. Eliphaz is addressing Job who has lost all wealth, health, and family. Eliphaz reminds Job that he encouraged many to go through difficult times and now he should apply that wisdom to himself. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
This passage reveals to us that Job was a counselor and encourager. When people ran into trouble, Job was available to help them overcome their distress, stress, and frustration. Job may have even been a preacher of encouragement. Messages of encouragement are important. Job encouraged people in their crisis. Now Job was facing a personal crisis and he was almost getting overwhelmed. Eliphaz felt incompetent to encourage Job, so he just resorted to reminding him to encourage himself. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
Those who preach need preachers too but when preachers fail they must preach to themselves. Those who counsel need counseling too but when counselors don’t shop us they must counsel themselves. Those who lead need to be led but when leaders do not rise to the occasion they must lead themselves. Always be available to encourage others but when you need encouragement be encouraged by others or encourage yourself. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
you, then, who teach others, do you not teach yourself? You who preach against stealing, do you steal?
You who say that people should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples?
You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law?
What we teach we must teach ourselves. What we preach we must preach to ourselves too. What we say we must say to ourselves. What we boast about we must uphold. This is what Paul tells the Jews in the Roman Church. This is true even to us today. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
1 Corinthians 9:27
No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
Many benefit from us but we must strive that we also benefit from ourselves. After preaching to prepare others for eternal life, Apostle Paul prays and expressed concern that he wouldn’t want to miss what he has prepared others to get. If we teach family issues we should apply the same to our lives and families. If we teach health we must live a healthy life. Do not fail to get what you have enabled others to receive. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
Mark 12:31 tells us that we should love our neighbor as ourselves. Let us love ourselves too. As you take care of the children and families of others, take care of your own too. As you sympathize with others, sympathize with yourself too. As you condemn others condemn yourself too. After encouraging others encourage yourself!
Dear God if we ever get to a point where we have served others and no one is at hand to serve us, may we find power from you to satisfactorily serve ourselves, in Jesus’ name, Amen!
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