Job 10-12

job10.jpgGreetings!  Job is speaking again and responding to his friends.  He is deeply depressed and accusing God of toying with him for no reason.  He concedes that he has sins and faults and is properly mortified by them, but he doesn’t see where he has sinned in this case.

10     “I loathe my very life;

therefore I will give free rein to my complaint

and speak out in the bitterness of my soul.

2 I will say to God: Do not condemn me,

but tell me what charges you have against me.

3 Does it please you to oppress me,

to spurn the work of your hands,

while you smile on the schemes of the wicked?

4 Do you have eyes of flesh?

Do you see as a mortal sees?

5 Are your days like those of a mortal

or your years like those of a man,

6 that you must search out my faults

and probe after my sin—

7 though you know that I am not guilty

and that no one can rescue me from your hand?

8 “Your hands shaped me and made me.

Will you now turn and destroy me?

9 Remember that you molded me like clay.

Will you now turn me to dust again?

10 Did you not pour me out like milk

and curdle me like cheese,

11 clothe me with skin and flesh

and knit me together with bones and sinews?

12 You gave me life and showed me kindness,

and in your providence watched over my spirit.

13 “But this is what you concealed in your heart,

and I know that this was in your mind:

14 If I sinned, you would be watching me

and would not let my offense go unpunished.

15 If I am guilty—woe to me!

Even if I am innocent, I cannot lift my head,

for I am full of shame

and drowned in my affliction.

16 If I hold my head high, you stalk me like a lion

and again display your awesome power against me.

17 You bring new witnesses against me

and increase your anger toward me;

your forces come against me wave upon wave.

18 “Why then did you bring me out of the womb?

I wish I had died before any eye saw me.

19 If only I had never come into being,

or had been carried straight from the womb to the grave!

20 Are not my few days almost over?

Turn away from me so I can have a moment’s joy

21 before I go to the place of no return,

to the land of gloom and deep shadow,

22 to the land of deepest night,

of deep shadow and disorder,

where even the light is like darkness.”


11     Then Zophar the Naamathite replied:

2 “Are all these words to go unanswered?

Is this talker to be vindicated?

3 Will your idle talk reduce men to silence?

Will no one rebuke you when you mock?

4 You say to God, ‘My beliefs are flawless

and I am pure in your sight.’

5 Oh, how I wish that God would speak,

that he would open his lips against you

6 and disclose to you the secrets of wisdom,

for true wisdom has two sides.

Know this: God has even forgotten some of your sin.

7 “Can you fathom the mysteries of God?

Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?

8 They are higher than the heavens—what can you do?

They are deeper than the depths of the grave—what can you know?

9 Their measure is longer than the earth

and wider than the sea.

10 “If he comes along and confines you in prison

and convenes a court, who can oppose him?

11 Surely he recognizes deceitful men;

and when he sees evil, does he not take note?

12 But a witless man can no more become wise

than a wild donkey’s colt can be born a man.

13 “Yet if you devote your heart to him

and stretch out your hands to him,

14 if you put away the sin that is in your hand

and allow no evil to dwell in your tent,

15 then you will lift up your face without shame;

you will stand firm and without fear.

16 You will surely forget your trouble,

recalling it only as waters gone by.

17 Life will be brighter than noonday,

and darkness will become like morning.

18 You will be secure, because there is hope;

you will look about you and take your rest in safety.

19 You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid,

and many will court your favor.

20 But the eyes of the wicked will fail,

and escape will elude them;

their hope will become a dying gasp.” 

 Once again Job’s friends make some true claims about God but misapply them to Job’s situation.


12     Then Job replied:

2 “Doubtless you are the people,

and wisdom will die with you!

I love sarcasm in the Bible.

3 But I have a mind as well as you;

I am not inferior to you.

Who does not know all these things?

4 “I have become a laughingstock to my friends,

though I called upon God and he answered—

a mere laughingstock, though righteous and blameless!

5 Men at ease have contempt for misfortune

as the fate of those whose feet are slipping.

6 The tents of marauders are undisturbed,

and those who provoke God are secure—

those who carry their god in their hands.

7 “But ask the animals, and they will teach you,

or the birds of the air, and they will tell you;

8 or speak to the earth, and it will teach you,

or let the fish of the sea inform you.

9 Which of all these does not know

that the hand of the Lord has done this?

That is a stinging rebuke to the atheists who insist that they just can’t see any evidence for God.

10 In his hand is the life of every creature

and the breath of all mankind.

11 Does not the ear test words

as the tongue tastes food?

12 Is not wisdom found among the aged?

Does not long life bring understanding?

13 “To God belong wisdom and power;

counsel and understanding are his.

14 What he tears down cannot be rebuilt;

the man he imprisons cannot be released.

15 If he holds back the waters, there is drought;

if he lets them loose, they devastate the land.

16 To him belong strength and victory;

both deceived and deceiver are his.

17 He leads counselors away stripped

and makes fools of judges.

18 He takes off the shackles put on by kings

and ties a loincloth around their waist.

19 He leads priests away stripped

and overthrows men long established.

20 He silences the lips of trusted advisers

and takes away the discernment of elders.

21 He pours contempt on nobles

and disarms the mighty.

22 He reveals the deep things of darkness

and brings deep shadows into the light.

23 He makes nations great, and destroys them;

he enlarges nations, and disperses them.

24 He deprives the leaders of the earth of their reason;

he sends them wandering through a trackless waste.

25 They grope in darkness with no light;

he makes them stagger like drunkards.

 The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Job notes how God is sovereign over all things.  This foreshadows a lot of what God does with the Israelites and their enemies.


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