One, he had just survived a shipwreck.. made it to the island’s shore with other survivors.
They were wet and cold so they made a fire.
Two, he gathered sticks to put in the fire and out came a snake and fastened to his hand.
The locals pieced together these events.. “aahh, this man is certainly a murderer. He was lucky to have survived the shipwreck but Fate will not let him go scot-free.” They were decided about their opinion of Paul since 2 + 2 was always meant to give 4.
So they waited and watched for him to swell up and die. According to Dake, the snake’s venom was the type that would cause rapid blood coagulation in the vessels and then widespread inflammation. In not long a time, the victim should be dead.
They observed till after Paul was meant to be dead. He wasn’t. So, quickly, they formed another opinion. “He is a god.” Fickle humans.
Job was so righteous God pointed him out to the Devil “Did you notice my servant Job? There is no one on earth as faithful and good as he is. He worships me and is careful not to do anything evil.” In the devil’s opinion, Job was only faithful to God because God blessed Job richly. To prove his point, the devil took and got God’s permission to test Job.
Satan went real hard on Job. Soon, Job lost his children, his property, his health.. think of every good thing he had – even his respect and dignity . He was reduced by the devil to next-to-nothingness. Job did not denounce God in all of these.
He could not understand why all the trouble came on him, but he remained sure about one thing: his integrity.
Public opinion held that for such a calamity to come upon anyone, he certainly was a quality sinner. Job’s three friends came to visit him. The visit which perhaps was meant for the purpose of comforting and consoling Job, turned out to make his existence even more miserable. His friends took turns painting Job all shades of black. They played God’s advocate to their own guilt, for God denounced their actions later.
When Job’s three friends could not make Job agree with their opinion of him, a little guy who had been watching the conversation took the baton. He continued to speak of Job and his character in the most demeaning of terms, since the elders were not up to it.
All four of them felt sure of their opinions as they were sure that 2 and 2 makes 4.
If God himself did not step in to prove them wrong, Job’s friends would probably never have changed their opinion.
They just correlated events wrongly.