God is not a deal maker. We can't tell God, "I will listen to my parents if you help me pass this test." Or any other difficult things that pop up in our lives. God ALWAYS does the right thing, and as followers of Jesus, we should do the right thing, not because we want some favor from God, but because we love Jesus and it's the right thing to do.
Job answers Bildad. "What you say is not true, and even if it was, who am I to bargain with God. Everything was created by God and for God (Col 1:16).... including me." Then Job cried out to God again.
When Job stopped to catch his breath, Zophar chimed in. "Just because you say you are righteous, doesn't make it so, Job. You talk a good game, but you are not so innocent or this would have never happened. I think it is time for you to repent and quit talking about how you didn't do anything to deserve this."
Job responded to Zophar. "You act all high and mighty, but you are no better than I am. If your logic is true, this could have easily happened to you. My fate could be your fate!" Then Job cried out to God again pleading God to free him from his agony.
The three men continue to attack Job's character for the next 17 chapters, and Job continues to defend his character for the next 17 chapters. Finally in chapter 32 another man shows up. He had been there listening all the while. His name is Elihu. He scolds Job's friends for putting God in a box and trying to explain the ways of our Heavenly Father. Then he tells Job that the more he defends himself, the more arrogant he sounds. Elihu tells Job.... and his friends, "Cry out to God. Not with explanations or justifications, but praise God for who He is. Don't try to make deals with God, but trust Him. God cares. God is understanding. God is just. And God is all powerful." Job and his friends grew very quiet and pondered what Elihu said. Then in chapter 38, the Lord challenges Job.
Elihu's advice for Job and his friends is great advice for us. Simply put: Praise God, pray, and trust God because He loves us, He is good and all- powerful. We will wrap up the Book of Job next time with God's challenge, Job's response and how it all works out.