by Jarrod M. Jacobs
Job chapter nine records one of the speeches Job made when defending himself against Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar. This speech in chapter nine is somewhat different from the others. Job does not spend much of his speech responding directly to Bildad and what he said in chapter eight. In chapter nine, Job devotes his attention to God and His greatness. The questions Job asks in this chapter get to the heart of the matter of sin.
In Job 9:1-10, Job declares God’s greatness. He asks the question in Job 9:2, “how should man be just with God?” He is asking, “How can a man maintain that he is in the right and be in opposition to God?” Job says, “If he will contend with him, he cannot answer him one of a thousand” (Job 9:3). Near the end of this chapter, Job pleads for a “daysman.” He says, “For He (God) is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him, and we should come together in judgment. Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both” (Job 9:32-33).
Job’s point was that he had not sinned in such a way as to warrant what he was enduring. At the same time, how could he, a mere man, talk with God and plead his case? If he tried, he could not “answer him one of a thousand.” He would not have a chance in the presence of Almighty God! Let us consider Job’s statements and the answers he needs. Thankfully, because we live on this side of the cross, we know that Job’s plea for a “daysman” was answered. Who is it? We shall soon see.
How Can a Sinful Man Stand Before a Just and Righteous God?
How can this be done? Put simply, it cannot happen! God, who “is light, and in him is no darkness at all” (I John 1:5), cannot have fellowship with sin and evil. This is why Isaiah says, “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear” (Isaiah 59:1-2). Our sin that we have committed separates us from God. In the New Testament, Paul said that all people have sinned (Romans 3:23). Thus, you and I, because we have sinned, cannot stand before the Just and Righteous God of Heaven.
He Cannot Answer God One Of A Thousand
All Job was saying in Job 9:3 was that man, because he has sinned in God’s sight, has no chance of standing before God to give an account of himself. He cannot answer God “one of a thousand.” He cannot stand on an equal plane with God and contend for himself. It is an utter impossibility! He cannot answer one of a thousand questions! Incidentally, this is seen in Job 38-40 when Job was asked not a thousand questions, but many questions by Almighty God, and Job stood speechless!
The Plea for a Daysman
As the speech in chapter nine continues, Job declares the power of God (Job 9:4-16). Job was like Paul and Daniel, who made it clear that God’s power was beyond our comprehension (Ephesians 3:20; Romans 11:33; Daniel 2:20; 4:34-37). Job could not believe that God would condescend to such a one as him.
Toward the end of chapter nine, Job considers how far away he is from God (Job 9:32-35). Job knew that God “is not a man as I am.” No, He is not! God is a spirit (John 4:24)! God is in Heaven. Solomon said. “Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few” (Ecclesiastes 5:2). God dwells in a place where flesh and blood cannot dwell (I Corinthians 15:50). God is the Holy and Just One who provided a plan for man’s salvation (John 3:16). God made all things, visible and invisible, through Jesus Christ (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17).
Realizing God’s greatness and power, Job wishes for a “daysman.” What is a daysman? A daysman is an arbitrator, an umpire, or a mediator between two parties. This is one who settles disputes between people. It is one who can identify with the feelings and needs on both sides of a conflict. Perhaps you have heard of an arbitrator being called to settle a dispute between “labor” and “management” in a company. These parties needed one familiar with both sides of the conflict to resolve the dispute.
Why is this so significant that Job wanted a daysman? It is because he knew there was a conflict between him and God. Seeing that it was not possible for Job to answer for himself (Job 9:3), he needed an arbitrator, a mediator, to “lay his hand upon us both.”
Is there such a thing as a “daysman” today? Yes! This “daysman” is the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible says, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Timothy 1:5). He is our “go-between” between God and us. He is the one to “lay his hand upon us both” because He knows both God and man. “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15). He came to this world and took on flesh to die on the cross at Calvary (John 1:14; 18:37; Hebrews 10:5; Philippians 2:5-8; John 3:13-16).
How wonderful it is that we have that mediator between God and us! Was Job asking specifically for Christ in that passage? Probably not. However, his need was just as real! He knew that someone had to stand and appeal to God. Today, Christ does this for us! He is our “great high priest” (Hebrews 4:14). He “ever liveth to make intercession” for us (Hebrews 7:25).
Hebrews 7:25 says that the only ones Christ makes intercession for are those “that come to God by him,” i.e., Christians! Seeing that this is true, only Christians have that right to the mediator, the daysman, between us a God. Are you a Christian? If not, why not? To have someone plead your case before God is one of the greatest spiritual blessings there is! Why not become a Christian now (II Corinthians 6:2)?