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Because the final speech of Job covers six chapters, we provide the following structure to help the reader follow it:

26. Job (9) Part 1: Attack - Rebuke of the ‘friends' - only God knows the truth

27. Job (9) Part 2: Defence - Job's Personal Integrity & the fate of his enemies

28. Job (9) Part 3: Interlude: Where Wisdom is Found

29. Job (9) Part 4: The Past - Job looks back almost nostalgically

30. Job (9) Part 5: The Present - Roles Reversed & a Resultant Wreck

31. Job (9) Part 6: Final Defence - Job's Final Words of Self-Vindication


FRAMEWORKS: Job 26: Job (9) Part 1: Rebuke of the 'friends' - only God knows the truth.


[Preliminary Comments: This is the start of Job's last, ninth and easily longest speech [going on to chapter 31 although not all of it might be Job's]. He starts out by verbally chastising [v.1-3] either Bildad who has just spoken, or all three ‘friends'. Where has their wisdom come from, is it from those from the past, the dead who now know nothing? [v.4,5] Although the dead are in no position to advise these ‘comforters' the all-powerful Creator God sees everything and knows everything [implied v.6-14]



v.1-3 Job's irony implying they have not helped him at all


v.1  Then Job replied

v.2  “How you have helped the powerless! How you have saved the arm that is feeble! 

v.3 What advice you have offered to one without wisdom! And what great insight you have displayed! 


v.4,5 He queries where they have got their ‘wisdom' from, the long passed dead?


v.4 Who has helped you utter these words? And whose spirit spoke from your mouth? 

v.5  “The dead are in deep anguish, those beneath the waters and all that live in them. 


v.6-14 But God the Creator is mysterious and beyond our understanding


v.6 The realm of the dead is naked before God; Destruction lies uncovered. 

v.7 He spreads out the northern skies over empty space; he suspends the earth over nothing. 

v.8 He wraps up the waters in his clouds, yet the clouds do not burst under their weight. 

v.9  He covers the face of the full moon, spreading his clouds over it. 

v.10  He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness. 

v.11 The pillars of the heavens quake, aghast at his rebuke. 

v.12 By his power he churned up the sea; by his wisdom he cut Rahab to pieces. 

v.13 By his breath the skies became fair; his hand pierced the gliding serpent. 

v.14 And these are but the outer fringe of his works; how faint the whisper we hear of him! Who then can understand the thunder of his power?”



[Concluding Comments: This fairly short chapter put the ‘friends' in their place [v.1-5] and essentially extols the Lord for His greatness in Creation which implies as Creator He knows all things, things even unknown to us. This greatness means He is way beyond our understanding.]

So, to sum up, what has Job been saying in this chapter? He

•  he implies the friends have not helped him at all [v.1-3]

•  he wonders where they have got their so-called ‘wisdom' from [v.4-5],

•  he extols the greatness of the Creator who sees all things [v.6-14]

It is clearly a preparatory chapter opening the way for the rest of the speech that continues over six chapters. His starting place? The friends don't know the truth, only God does!]



Continue to Chapter 27