Job 19: Job (6): Woes and faith
Comments: This chapter in some ways reads like a psalm
in that it lays out the woes of the writer but ends with major
faith declarations. Bildad has just piled negatives on him in
the previous chapter and so his first words are those of defence
[v.1-7]. Perhaps as part of that he expresses what he feels Gpd
has done to him [v.8-12] and takes that on into how his family
is now against him as well [v.13-19]. At the end of it he just
feels a bag of bones with nothing left to give [v.20-22] and,
perhaps feeling on the edge of death, wishes he could save his
words for posterity [v.23,24] [?perhaps for the truth to be seen
one day.] But then comes the most amazing faith statement of the
whole book, that he has a redeemer which means one day he will
see God [v.25-27]. So sure of this is he that he gives a warning
to his detractors that if they come after him, God will come after
them [v.28,29]. A truly remarkable ending to the chapter.]
Job asserts that any guilt he may have is between him and God
long will you torment me and crush me with words?
times now you have reproached me; shamelessly you attack me.
it is true that I have gone astray, my error remains my concern
indeed you would exalt yourselves above me and use my humiliation
know that God has wronged me and drawn his net around me.
I cry, ‘Violence!' I get no response; though I call for help,
there is no justice.
He lists what he feels God has done
has blocked my way so I cannot pass; he has
shrouded my paths in darkness.
has stripped me of my honour and removed the crown from
tears me down on every side till I am gone; he
uproots my hope like a tree.
anger burns against me; he counts
me among his enemies.
troops advance in force; they build a siege ramp against
me and encamp around my tent.
He takes that list on to include how his family feels about him
has alienated my family from me; my acquaintances are completely
estranged from me.
relatives have gone away; my closest friends have forgotten me.
guests and my female servants count me a foreigner; they look
on me as on a stranger.
summon my servant, but he does not answer, though I beg him with
my own mouth.
breath is offensive to my wife; I am loathsome to my own family.
the little boys scorn me; when I appear, they ridicule me.
my intimate friends detest me; those I love have turned against
He is just aware of his awful physical state
am nothing but skin and bones; I have escaped only by the skin
of my teeth.
pity on me, my friends, have pity, for the hand of God has struck
do you pursue me as God does? Will you never get enough of my
He would like to leave a record of what he has been saying
that my words were recorded, that they were written on a scroll,
they were inscribed with an iron tool on lead, or engraved
in rock forever!
An Amazing Faith Statement
know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will
stand on the earth.
after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I
will see God;
myself will see him with my own eyes — I, and not another.
How my heart yearns within me!
If you people come after me, watch out, God is for me
you say, ‘How we will hound him, since the root of the trouble
lies in him, '
should fear the sword yourselves; for wrath will bring punishment
by the sword, and then you will know that there is judgment.
Comments: As commented at the beginning, a chapter that
starts with woes but ends with faith!
has Job said in this chapter? He
rebukes the ‘friends'
for having failed him [v.1-7],
that has happened to God [v.8-12],
speaks of how
his household have rejected him [v.13-19],
appeals to them
from bis broken state [v.20-22],
desires to record
for posterity what has happened [v.23-24]
knows there is
One in heaven who will come, who he will see [v.25-27]
and warns the
others that to be against him will be to be against God [v.28-29]
chapter of realism – of his rejection by friends & family,
of his terrible physical state, and YET one with an amazing statement