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Bible Commentaries
Job 13

Garner-Howes Baptist CommentaryGarner-Howes

Verses 1-28



Verses 1-28:

Verses 1, 2 related Job’s declaration that his eyes had seen and ears understood these acts of providence, that had been recounted by the platitudes of traditional wisdom of the aged, on which these three pious friends from afar had based charges of wicked guilt and covered sin in his life. Job told them, in no uncertain terms, that what they knew he knew about Divine providence, and that he was in no way inferior in knowledge to them, Job 12:3; Paul took a similar attitude when unjustly assailed, 2 Corinthians 11:4-6; 2 Corinthians 11:21-24; 2 Corinthians 12:6-11.

Verses 3-5 contrast the attitude of Job and his three advising friends from another land. V. 3 asserts that he would desire to communicate with the Almighty God, rather than with them, reasoning with Him directly regarding his afflictions.

But v. 4 charges, "ye are forgers of lies ...physicians of no value," charlatans, hypocrites, deceivers, and false prophets, like that of the woman recounted Mr 5:26. He then advised them that the highest order of wisdom they could show would be to "shut up," "hold their peace," or "be silent!" Rather than plead, He had rather confer with the Almighty God than with them, Job 9:34-35; He was convinced that they were characters of no value, formalist traditionalists with empty words at the best, Job 16:2. Blessed is he who keeps his mouth shut, when he has nothing to say, as repeatedly expressed, Proverbs 17:28; Ecclesiastes 5:3; Amos 5:13; James 1:19.

Verses 6-8 are an appeal of Job to his three accusers, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar to just listen for a moment for the scolding reproof he had to lay on them from his liPs He chided them for speaking wickedly and deceitfully, claiming that what they said was from God and that God had judged him to be a very wicked man, else his sufferings and afflictions would not be so great, Job 17:5; John 16:2; 2 Corinthians 4:2.

Verse eight inquires if they will accept the person of the Lord God and contend for him, with partiality, fallacies, and preconceived opinions of guilt against him, Exodus 23:23; Proverbs 24:23; Job 32:21; Job 34:19; Malachi 2:9; Judges 6:31. They knew not that God had turned him to Satan to inflict afflictions on him to demonstrate what a perfect or (mature) child of God could endure without turning away from Him, Job 2:6-10; 1 Corinthians 10:13.

Verse 9 inquires of these three advisors whether or not they will be found pure and disinterested in motives when God searches them out, tries them for their idle accusations of guilt against him. Can they deceive God, as they deceive men, or mock God in bringing false accusations against Job, Matthew 12:36; Galatians 6:7.

Verses 10,11 recount Job’s direct assertion to his three accusers that God would surely judge them for impractical judgment, even if they did it secretly, away from the general public, as they had v. 8; Psalms 82:1-2. God can do His own judgment without invalid and fallacious arguments of men, Job assures them. Rhetorically he inquires if God’s excellency or majesty is not enough to cause them to fear and dread having claimed to speak for Him, when what they said was false, a spouting of sophistry, Jeremiah 10:7; Jeremiah 10:10.

Verse 12 asserts that the memorized platitudes they had quoted to indict Job of guilt would come to be like ashes of no value, Isaiah 44:20. They would one day be judged for their false and unjust accusations against Job, in the hour of judgment, and fall like bodies of clay, in contrast to bodies of stone, Ecclesiastes 12:13-14.

Verse 13 is a direct appeal from Job to his three recently come foreign friends to silence their abuse charges of sinful guilt against him, to increase his anguish; He desired rather to endure his afflictions alone, before God, and let come what would, 1 Corinthians 10:13; Hebrews 13:5.

Verse 14 adds that Job had rather take his flesh in his own teeth, a picture of a wild beast that carries its young to safety in its mouth, in times of storm and floods. He would prefer to put his life in his own hand rather than entrust it to the judgment of these "do-gooders," who had come like buzzards to their roost, to advise him on how to prolong his life and be free from afflictions, Judges 12:3; 1 Samuel 19:5; 1 Samuel 28:21; Psalms 119:109. He did not fear to ask God to intervene, Exodus 33:20.

Verse 15 is an outcry of Job’s trust; fidelity to God, that though God should slay him, or permit him to be slain, he would keep on trusting in Him, hoping in God, rather than deny Him, as Satan said he would, or curse God and die, as his wife advised him to do, Job 2:5-6; Job 2:9; Job 1 Kg 8:35; 17:1; Psalms 23:4; Proverbs 3:5; Proverbs 14:32. He held faithfully to his integrity, Proverbs 27:5.

Verse 16 witnesses Job’s testimony that God would be, become his salvation (deliverance) from his vile and afflicted state. For an hypocrite would not wish or could not stand before Him as he would, Psalms 1:4-6; Romans 14:11-12; Isaiah 12:1-2.

Verses 17, 18 appeal to these three accusers to listen earnestly to what Job has to say to them. He is not afraid to justify himself immediately, in the very presence of God, against what he considers blasphemously false charges of guilt of sin that had caused his afflictions, as asserted by these three praters of platitudes against his character. He states that he had "ordered" his cause, chosen moral and ethical conduct, and knew he would be vindicated as innocent of their charges, when face to face with God; Like Paul, he "knew whom he had believed" and had fixed faith in His Divine care over him, 2 Timothy 1:12.

Verse 19 is Job’s challenge just who would contend with him and provide sustaining evidence that he was false, a lying hypocrite, a concealer of grave sins in his own life. He said, prove it and I will have no more to say, fight no more to live, but quietly lay down and die, Job 19:5; Job 33:6; Isaiah 50:8; Romans 8:33.

Verses 20•22 recount Job’s request that God do not two things to him: 1) first, that He not hide Himself or hold back from removing his stroke of affliction or disease any longer, Psalms 39:10; Psalms 39:2) second, that God will not overwhelm him with His very presence, causing him to shrink in fear. In verse 22 he calls on God to lay any charges he has against him and simply let him be free to answer them. He was willing to give account to the Lord, face to face, even as Paul was, 2 Corinthians 4:7-8.

Verse 23 is a plea from Job for the Lord to disclose how many sins, iniquities, and transgressions, were held against him, to cause such afflictions as he endured, as charged ignorantly by his three accusers, John 9:2-3; John 11:4.

Verse 24 is an inquiry of Job to the Lord, just why God hid His face from him, put a cloud between him and the Lord, as if he were an enemy of the Lord, to be robbed of his power as it appeared to men, Leviticus 26:36; Psalms 1:4, as also expressed at length Deuteronomy 30:20; Job 10:2; Job 20:2-3; Psalms 10:1; Psalms 13:1; Psalms 77:6-9; Psalms 88:14; 1 Samuel 28:16; Job 16:9; Job 19:11; Job 30:21; La 2:5.

Verse 25 inquires whether or not the Lord will break him like a fallen leaf, blown about in a storm; Would the Lord continue to cause him to shake and tremble with terror? Even the Lord did not break a bruised reed, Isaiah 42:3; Matthew 12:18-21; 1 Samuel 21:14; Leviticus 26:36; Psalms 1:4.

Verse 26 recounts Job’s bitter complaint that, in the eyes of his so-called friends, God had legally recorded guilt charges against him, sins he had committed from his youth, for which he was now suffering. And it is later recounted in the law that men may suffer for such, but it was not so with Job, Exodus 20:4-5; Psalms 25:7. His suffering was for the glory of God, an example for us, John 9:2-3; John 11:4; 1 Corinthians 10:11-13.

Verse 27 adds that the Lord had put Job’s feet in stocks, like a criminal, taking away his freedom among men, until the time of his execution, Jeremiah 20:2; Job 3:23; Job 19:8. He. was held and watched, fenced in by his afflictions, so that men judged him to be an unclean rebel against God, Job 23:11.

Verse 28 concluded that "he" (Job), third person, the one in such a condition, as a rotten, putrefied thing, or a moth-eaten garment, continually consumed away toward death, to which all men must one day come, Ecclesiastes 9:5. But he pleas for a justified relief from his disease, Job 14:1; Psalms 39:11; Hosea 5:12.

Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Job 13". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/job-13.html. 1985.
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