Class 6, Chapters 20-23

Chapter 20, Zophar

20:2—maybe Zophar is being sarcastic toward Job because of what was said in 19:29

20:3—I have understanding; it’s what motivates me to speak

20:4-5—it is (and has been for a long time) self-evident that the joy of the wicked is short and quickly cut off.

20:6-7—however great you become in this life, your end is like dung. Nobody will care or remember you

20:8-9—he will quickly depart and people who saw him will no longer. His home won’t see him either.

20:10—His children are brought low and have to appeal to the poor for a favor. Zophar says his hands will give back his wealth, implying he didn’t rightfully own it anyway

20:11—he is cut off before his time, before living a “full life”

20:12-15—the wicked man holds onto evil with his words and greedily swallows riches. They don’t belong to him so God causes him to vomit them up.

20:16—he might die from a snake. Zophar would see it fitting since he accused Job of hiding evil under his tongue, which is the venom of cobras.

20:17—he won’t see the wonderful things God made

20:18—he will hand over what he has made because…

20:19—he stole it anyway and oppressed the poor!

20:20—you are never happy with what you have and indulge every impulsive desire to feed your appetites

20:21—you greedily consumed all of what you had. None was left for anyone else. You are on a downward spiral; this isn’t sustainable.

20:22—everyone will come after you in your peak

20:23—God will satisfy your appetite—by raining his burning anger into your body.

Maybe Zophar is implying Job’s sores to be a fulfillment of this statement.

20:24-26—he will die a nasty death and be devoured. His riches will have no future

20:27—heaven and earth will be witnesses and pursuers of him

20:28—some of Job’s possessions WERE carried away

20:29—Zophar declares his speech to have God’s endorsement behind it.

Chapter 21, Job

***Most of Job’s friends' points in the second cycle of conversation (Chapters 13-21) use points Job makes and uses them against him. In the first cycle, they each made their own points which they had probably concluded on in their own thoughts and their talks with each other on their way to meet Job. They have shifted to remembering things he says throughout his speeches to use against him when they speak.***

21:2-3—Just listen and then you can make fun of me when I’m done.

21:4—it’s not toward a human that I have an issue. ***If it were at least I could talk to them about it and maybe come to an agreement.***

21:5-6—when you look at me with that appalling look it reminds me of my miserable state

21:7—Psalm 73, Asaph’s complaint

21:8—at odds with what Job said in 14:21-22—although it’s talking about the wicked

21:9-13—the wicked have it easy and seem to receive special treatment. God doesn’t punish them.

21:14-15—The wicked’s attitude toward God

***Prideful idolaters***

21:16—It’s up to them to prosper and they do; God doesn’t hold them back

21:17-18—do the wicked EVER have to pay for their ways?? How often do they suffer for their choices??

21:19-20—I’m not seeing the proof of your claim that God repays the wicked. Let’s see it!

21:21—the wicked are as apathetic as they are anything else. They don’t care about their families (compare to how Job made sacrifices for his children after feasts in case they had a wrong THOUGHT about God)

21:22—I’m not sure of the meaning of the verse in relation to its placement in the speech

21:23-27—No matter what everyone dies alike; it all seems to be the same

21:27-28—I know what you’re thinking, saying “But oh what happened to the house of the prince?”

21:29-30—Haven’t you guys heard? What are people saying out there on roads you travel? News flash, the wicked get off easy!!

21:31—who will even tell him what is plainly obvious? Who repays him?

21:32-33—Even in death he is favored

21:34—You guys couldn’t tell the truth to save your lives. You only tell lies; that’s all you have left.

Chapter 22, Eliphaz

22:2—what can a man do for God? How can he benefit from a mere man? You can help yourself (the things man finds profitable differ from what God does)

22:3—is it any pleasure to the Almighty if you are in the right? (Obviously, with how highly God spoke of Job he DID have joy because of him). Whatever God gains from the interaction with him and satan, probably glory

22:4—it IS Job’s fear of God although it isn’t God’s reproof nor has God entered into judgment with Job.

22:5—Eliphaz is sure of Job’s evil from this rhetorical question followed by his statement in the second half of the verse

22:6—You have extorted your family and took what little the needy had; the accusation is that Job is a swindler

22:7—you failed to provide the most basic necessities despite your vast resources. Job is greedy and selfish, uncaring for the needy.

***Isn’t this a common accusation toward the wealthy, that they hate and rob the poor? The accusers who believe this rhetoric are usually only using the poor as pawns in their ongoing feud against “the rich”, who they also automatically label “the oppressors”.***

22:8—The mighty owned the land and the favored live in it

***This accusation is nauseatingly similar to the arguments declaring the good fortune and success of some people to be a result of “privilege”. This is simply too short-sighted and agenda-driven to objectively examine where a person’s success comes from. It’s usually easier for malcontents to condemn someone in a group they call the “privileged” than examine their narrative and acknowledge it may be flawed.***

22:9—you wouldn’t help the broken-hearted in tough situations. Job, you are heartless.

22:10-11—All of this is why you are in the situation you’re in, Job

22:12-14—God is high and mighty, but you seem to think he can’t see all the way down to earth from his lofty abode.

22:15—are you going to follow the well-worn often traveled path of evildoers?

22:16—sometimes used as a possible timeline indicator for the events of Job. Some who study the book say this could allude to these events taking place after the flood.

22:17—see 21:14; same as Job’s point in the previous chapter

22:18—God blessed you in spite of your wickedness and you declare the counsel of the wicked is far from you??

22:19-20—righteous people are glad at the wicked’s troubles—it’s about time! Nothing of what they had will be left!

22:21-23—don’t be at odds with God anymore. This is the way for your life to be good again. Go back to his instructions and meditate on them. Remove injustice.

22:24-25—Give up your vain riches and then God will be what you value.

***Chapter 1 doesn’t mention Job losing any gold. It might be the only wealth he has left and Eliphaz thinks Job cares about it more than God.***

22:26-27—you will delight in God and he will hear you again

22:28—you will have control over your own life again and you will act in an upright way

22:29—if someone is brought low you say it’s their own fault (Job’s friends are excluded, apparently). Eliphaz is accusing Job of the thing which he, Bildad and Zophar have been doing for most of the conversation.

22:30—God even saves sinners—ones just like you, Job

Chapter 23, Job

23:2—may indicate another day has passed. It could be the morning and Job begins to speak.

23:3-4—now Job doesn’t even want an intercessor to speak to God on his behalf (16:21). He wants to go personally to God’s throne and present his case directly to God himself. This is quite a leap from 9:3 and 9:12

23:5—I can comprehend the wisdom of God.

***9:10-11—Job couldn’t understand what God was up to but now he has no doubts he can understand it all.***

23:6-7—he wouldn’t fight against me. I have confidence that anyone upright could argue their case before him and I would be acquitted if I were to do this.

23:8-9—but here on earth I just can’t understand what God is doing. He is active and moving but how would I know anything about what he’s doing?

23:10—God knows all about my ways. I’ll be fine and come out on the other side of this trial.

23:11-12—I’ve been walking according to his will and haven’t turned aside. His words are better for me than food.

23:13—what God wants, God gets. What he plans, he does.

23:14—whatever this is, God will complete his whole plan for me. God is thinking of me and the plans he has for me. In 10:13 Job feels that God’s purpose for this situation was to judge him guilty.

23:15-16—see 9:34—despite Job’s brief stint of confidence he admits he is terrified of God.

23:17—I won’t be silent because of this awful situation. I can’t understand my way.

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