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Bible Commentaries

Bridgeway Bible Commentary

Job 28

Verses 1-28

The search for true wisdom (28:1-28)

At this point there is a pause in the story while the writer inserts a poem on the pricelessness of true wisdom. The poem does not state who composed it, though it could have been spoken by Job during the period of quiet that followed the last of the friends’ speeches. The theme of the poem is that, though people go to much trouble to find the riches hidden in the earth, they are not able to find the far greater riches of true wisdom.
Mining is an occupation that shows people’s courage and inventiveness. While grain grows quietly above the earth, miners in dark underground tunnels dig out the minerals (28:1-6). Travellers, animals and birds move about in the world above, unaware that beneath them miners are changing the course of underground streams in search for precious metals (7-11). But people do not know how to find wisdom. They cannot dig it out of the earth, find it in the sea, or buy it with money. It is precious beyond value (12-19). Neither the living nor the dead can give wisdom (20-22).
God alone is the source of wisdom. He created everything, controls everything and knows everything (23-27). People will find wisdom only when they cease acting according to their sinful urges and act instead out of the humble desire to please God and do his will (28).

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Bibliographical Information
Flemming, Donald C. "Commentary on Job 28". "Fleming's Bridgeway Bible Commentary". 2005.