Job 9:12

 

Job continues with his reply to Bildad and Job says in Job 9:12-21, “Behold, he taketh away, who can hinder him? who will say unto him, What doest thou?[13] If God will not withdraw his anger, the proud helpers do stoop under him.[14] How much less shall I answer him, and choose out my words to reason with him?[15] Whom, though I were righteous, yet would I not answer, but I would make supplication to my judge.[16] If I had called, and he had answered me; yet would I not believe that he had hearkened unto my voice.[17] For he breaketh me with a tempest, and multiplieth my wounds without cause.[18] He will not suffer me to take my breath, but filleth me with bitterness.[19] If I speak of strength, lo, he is strong: and if of judgment, who shall set me a time to plead?[20] If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect, it shall also prove me perverse.[21] Though I were perfect, yet would I not know my soul: I would despise my life.” What Job is saying inverses twelve through fifteen is that God does what He wants to do. No human being can keep God from doing what the Lord has chosen to do. God decided to bring these judgments into Job’s life. Job had nothing to do with it. It was God’s decision absolutely independent of anything that Job said or did. That is true with all of us. That is the point that Job is making here. As Job said in verse 12, “Behold, he taketh away, who can hinder him? who will say unto him, What doest thou?”

 

In verses 16 and 17 Job is saying that even if it could be absolutely proved that Job got through to God, it sure did not seem like it because of all the bad things that happened to Job. That is why Job said in verse 16, “If I had called, and he had answered me; yet would I not believe that he had hearkened unto my voice.” When things go badly for us, there will always be a temptation to think the way Job did that God did not hear or answer our prayer, but we have the advantage of knowing all the promises of God in the New Testament. For example, Romans 8:28, “For we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” And Jesus said in Matthew 28:20, “lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world 

 

What Job said in Job 9:20 is very true for everyone: “If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect, it shall also prove me perverse.” Even if Job was to say that he knows he did not deserve what happened to him because Job never did anything wrong, no one can say that. We are all sinners, and no one has arrived at sinless perfection. Job is correct: it would not take much to determine that Job was not perfect, just like none of us are perfect. All that it will take is to listen to someone talk for just a little while, and their own words will condemn them. You do not have to see what they actually do in secrecy, just listen to them talk. As it says in James 3:6, “The tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity...”

 

Job makes an interesting statement in Job 9:21, “Though I were perfect, yet would I not know my soul: I would despise my life.” Even if Job did not commit any sins, he still would not know everything. And that was the real situation. Job did not know and neither did his friends know why God allowed all these sufferings in Job’s life. We know because we have the first few chapters of the book of Job. The same is true of each of our lives. We do not know why God allows what He allows, but we know He has a good reason for it. God knows best and we must trust Him.

 

Job is also correct in what he says in Job 9:22-23, “This is one thing, therefore I said it, He destroyeth the perfect and the wicked.[23] If the scourge slay suddenly, he will laugh at the trial of the innocent.” In verse 22 Job said, “He destroyeth the perfect and the wicked.” God also blesses believers and unbelievers. When it is a beautiful day, it is a beautiful day for the just and the unjust. When God brings rain, it rains on both. Life has its ups and downs for the saved and the unsaved. That is the nature of life: we are all going to experience the things that life brings. There is a time to win, but also a time to lose. We all live, but we also all die. God is in charge of all these great events, and if God decides it is time to bring sorrows into my life, who am I to question God?  

 

Job says in Job 9:24-29, “The earth is given into the hand of the wicked: he covereth the faces of the judges thereof; if not, where, and who is he?[25] Now my days are swifter than a post: they flee away, they see no good.[26] They are passed away as the swift ships: as the eagle that hasteth to the prey.[27] If I say, I will forget my complaint, I will leave off my heaviness, and comfort myself:[28] I am afraid of all my sorrows, I know that thou wilt not hold me innocent.[29] If I be wicked, why then labour I in vain?” The statement that Job made in verse 24 is true: “The earth is given into the hand of the wicked…” Most people on the earth do not know the Lord. Most of the rich and powerful do not know the Lord. The devil is called “the god of this world” because of the control and authority that the devil has been given in this world. When the devil tempted Christ, the Bible says in Matthew 4:8-9, “Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;[9] And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.” That was not an idle boast made by the devil of what he could have given to Christ. Of course, what the devil gives is only temporary. It will all be taken away at the coming of Christ. But until that day comes, many of the people who are rich and powerful in this world have sold themselves with deceit, and dishonesty, and cruelty, and violence to get riches and power. And so Job is saying that the fact that he lost everything is proof that he is not one of the wicked. Even though the devil has certain authority to give out such wealth and power, the devil is still under the authority of God. Ultimately God uses the devil to glorify the name of Christ. That is how powerful God is. No matter what the devil does, God changes it and somehow uses it to lead into the will of God. The greatest example of this is the death of Jesus on the cross. Wicked men arrested Jesus and crucified Him, but God used it to purchase salvation so that anyone could be saved and go to heaven.  

 

In Job chapter 9 and verses 25, 26, 27, and 28 Job is recounting once again how much he is suffering. And then what Job states in verse in verse 29 is a reference to what was said in verse 24. If Job was wicked, then he probably would be prospering and not suffering. “If I be wicked, why then labour I in vain?” In this life the wicked usually prosper temporarily anyway. Job’s sufferings were so great that it helped prove that Job was not being punished for his sins.  

 

Job said in Job 9:30-35, “If I wash myself with snow water, and make my hands never so clean;[31] Yet shalt thou plunge me in the ditch, and mine own clothes shall abhor me.[32] For he is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him, and we should come together in judgment.[33] Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both.[34] Let him take his rod away from me, and let not his fear terrify me:[35] Then would I speak, and not fear him; but it is not so with me.” If you are guilty before God, there is nothing that you can do to fix that problem. That is what Job meant when he said in verses 30-31, “If I wash myself with snow water, and make my hands never so clean;[31] Yet shalt thou plunge me in the ditch, and mine own clothes shall abhor me.” That is true from a human standpoint, and is why you need a Savior. Jesus can do for you what you cannot do for yourself. Jesus can take away all your sins and make you whiter than snow. In verse 32 Job is saying that he cannot justify himself before God: “For he is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him, and we should come together in judgment.” In verse 33 Job is recognizing that he has no mediator on the earth that could possibly speak to God in his favor either. Job said, ”Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both.” Thankfully, we have Jesus. Jesus forever stands in the gap for us to declare that He is our Savior and He has forgiven us of all of our sins. It says in First Timothy 2:5, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;[6] Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.”

 

In verses 34 and 35 of Job chapter 9 Job is saying that he realizes that it is all up to God. There is nothing that Job can do to fix all the sufferings that came upon him. Job knew that it is all in God’s hands. Every believer needs to know that. We all have things that we can do nothing about, and it is in God’s hands. That is all. And so we have to wait and see what God will do.

 

Job said in Job 10:1-10, “My soul is weary of my life; I will leave my complaint upon myself; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.[2] I will say unto God, Do not condemn me; shew me wherefore thou contendest with me.[3] Is it good unto thee that thou shouldest oppress, that thou shouldest despise the work of thine hands, and shine upon the counsel of the wicked?[4] Hast thou eyes of flesh? or seest thou as man seeth?[5] Are thy days as the days of man? are thy years as man's days,[6] That thou inquirest after mine iniquity, and searchest after my sin?[7] Thou knowest that I am not wicked; and there is none that can deliver out of thine hand.[8] Thine hands have made me and fashioned me together round about; yet thou dost destroy me.[9] Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast made me as the clay; and wilt thou bring me into dust again?[10] Hast thou not poured me out as milk, and curdled me like cheese?” Job continues to try and reason why God has allowed such sufferings to come into Job’s life. Job is weary. He is speaking in the bitterness of his soul. And Job says to God, “Do not condemn me.” One thing that every Christian can be sure of: the Lord will never condemn us. Once you are saved through faith in Christ, you have passed from condemnation unto life. It says in Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus…”

 

In verse 3 Job says that it as though God is despising Job and God is oppressing Job. But Job knows that he has not done anything to deserve the sufferings that have come his way. The human “friends” of Job have concluded that Job must deserve what has happened to him, but Job says to God in verses 4, 5, and 6 that Job realizes that God is not like man. Man looks at the appearance, but God knows what is really going on. If God knows what is the real truth about Job, then God knows what Job knows: Job as done nothing to deserve the sufferings. Job said to God in verse 7, “Thou knowest that I am not wicked.”

 

In verses 8, 9, 10 Job is stating that he knows that God made him and gave him life. And now it appears as though God is destroying him, and Job wonders why his life has become like this. We know the answer because we know what was said in chapters one and two. As Job said in his first response to what had happened to him in Job 1:21, “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” God knows what He is doing, even when we do not. At least we can always say, “The Lord knows.” God is good, and holy, and true. He knows what He is doing, and why He is doing it. And another benefit of being a Christian: Romans 8:28. There will be a good result when all is said and done. As we will see at the end of the book of Job, that was true with his life also. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose

 

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Copyright; 2018 by Charles F. (Rick) Creech
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