Then the Almighty will be your gold and choice silver to you. Job 22:25
Then – It’s about the money! For most of us, it’s always about the money. In Job’s day, it was about the gold and the silver. I suppose that a lot of us wish we have gold and silver instead of the promise on paper we carry in our wallets and purses. But the concerns haven’t changed if even the commodity of exchange has. What Eliphaz says here has a direct bearing on our struggles with money, and in particular, with our temptations toward greed.
Actually, there isn’t any Hebrew word justifying the translation “then” in this verse. The first word of the verse is hayah – “will be.” The temporal conditional “then” is added in order to draw a connection between the first action that Eliphaz suggests to Job and the subsequent result Job will experience. Eliphaz suggests that Job treat his gold as dust and his silver as if it were common riverbed stones. Then something will happen. Job will see that his real wealth is found in El Shaddai, the Almighty.
We probably agree with Eliphaz. It’s good advice. We acknowledge that the Almighty really is the source of whatever prosperity we enjoy. He is our true silver and gold. But acknowledging the truth of Eliphaz’s statement isn’t quite the same as doing something about it, is it? It’s hard to think of our wealth as nothing more than dust and river rock. Jacque Ellul made the point that money – and the greed that usually accompanies it – must be desacrementalized. We must turn the power of money upside down. We must remove its pull from our consciousness. How do we do that? By demonstrating our declarations in concrete action. If we say that our true gold is God, then we must actually treat our wealth as if it had no more power, and was of no more concern, than dust. We demonstrate the truth of the Almighty’s sovereignty over our borrowed wealth by showing the world that it has no attachment to us. We give it away!
“We see than that wealth is a down payment; it is the first part of the fulfillment. God has promised grace, and he begins to fulfill this promise by acting in this material way [by granting us wealth].”
“In our world, we solve our problems all alone with our technology, our science, our money, our political parties; God does not answer because we do not call him. The poor do not call on him, and those who call him are the rich. . . . The Bible calls anyone who has no real need of God’s help rich. . . . The church cannot be an assembly of the rich; it is made for poor outsiders.” We should be deeply distressed when we enter a church that is not filled to the brim with those who are in need. A comfortable ease found in most sanctuaries is only a symptom that we are indeed among the rich, the ones who really no longer depend on El Shaddai for their status in life. As the church accommodates itself to the symbols of success, it turns its back on the least of these, and on the Lord of the least of these.
Yeshua spoke more about money than any other subject. He knew how much we value that dust and those river rocks. He knew that concrete actions to remove the false and idolatrous holiness of money require enormous faith. The world will offer no consolation. To find our wealth in the Father is to shun the wealth-accumulating frenzy of the world. What will you do today to affirm that you know gold is nothing but dust?
Topical Index: then, gold, dust, money, Job 22:25, Jacques Ellul
 Jacques Ellul, Money & Power, p. 64.
 Ellul, pp. 153, 152, 150.