Notes: Job 19-20

English Bible Study Guide for January 15, 2008

Job 19

Job answers (again).

2: Job laments that his friends will not stop accusing him.

This continuing barrage against Job’s character is like Chinese water torture.

Proverbs 27:15  A continual dropping in a very rainy day and a contentious woman are alike.

3: 10 times. Job’s friends have spoken heretofore only 5 times. With Job’s responses, this would be the 10th discourse; but this manner of reckoning for 10 doesn’t satisfy. Perhaps the number 10 is used figuratively to express a large number.

Genesis 31:7  “And your father hath deceived me, and changed my wages ten times; but God suffered him not to hurt me.”

With our inflated everything, we might say, “If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a hundred times…”; ten doesn’t get anyone’s attention any more.

6-13: Job is certain that these calamities are the act of God. You may argue that the devil has brought these troubles; but you must acknowledge that the devil does so with the express permission and encouragement of God.

14-19: Like a leper, Job is an outcast, forsaken by family, friends, and neighbors. If Job had sinned and brought these things upon himself, we might understand why others would have nothing to do with him. But why would they avoid a good man who was having a bad time?

20: “I am escaped with the skin of my teeth.” That’s not much to have at the end of the day.

21: As we have noticed before, Job state plainly: You persecute me as God. His friends have taken it upon themselves to be the judge of Job’s character and conduct. If ever there were an example of why Jesus warned against presuming to be judges of others (Matthew 7:1-5), these friends are it. Job’s response, realizing that his friends have no clue to what God is doing, seems in keeping with Matthew 7:6,

Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

23-24: Job’s wish has been granted; these things have been written in a book.

25-27: Is there a clearer statement of Job’s doctrine of salvation, eschatology and resurrection than this?

  • My redeemer lives
  • He shall stand on earth at the latter day
  • I shall see Him for myself
  • Even though this old flesh may decay and be eaten of worms, I’ll see God

Note that Job’s Redeemer is his God! Christians agree completely with Job.

Titus 2:13  Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14  Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

Job 20

Zophar speaks again.

1-2: I must speak.

3: Since the beginning of Man’s sojourn on earth, this is how it has been.

4-29: If the wicked prosper in this life, it is but for a short time; the judgment of the wicked is sure to come.

There is little in Zophar’s speech with which to disagree. The problem, as usual, is that his argument is non-sequitur, it does not apply to Job’s condition or question.

To be sure, the opposite is true.

28: Zophar would have Job believe that his vast wealth and large family were just temporary accidents that accompanied Job’s wicked life; and that now the truth is known about Job’s secret sins, and Job has lost both wealth and family as a consequence.

29: And God has done it (as Job has said); but not without reason. God has done these things because of Job’s wickedness.

Now read this section again and see how Zophar has slandered Job.

  • 11: Sins of the youth remain
  • 12: Hypocrisy hides the real, sinful soul
  • 14, 16: The poison of asps is within him (compare Romans 3:13)
  • 15: Greed and gluttony
  • 19: Without compassion or mercy, violent foreclosures

Do you not weep with Job?