Job 22

Listen to Job 22

Eliphaz Speaks: Job's Wickedness Is Great

1 Then 1Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said:
2 2"Can a man be profitable to God? Surely he who is wise is profitable to himself.
3 Is it any pleasure to the Almighty if you are in the right, or is it gain to him if you 3make your ways blameless?
4 Is it for your fear of him that he reproves you and 4enters into judgment with you?
5 Is not your evil abundant? There is no end to your iniquities.
6 For you have 5exacted pledges of your brothers for nothing 6and stripped the naked of their clothing.
7 You have given no water to the weary to drink, and you have 7withheld bread from the hungry.
8 8The man with power possessed the land, and 9the favored man lived in it.
9 You have 10sent widows away empty, and 11the arms of 12the fatherless were crushed.
10 Therefore 13snares are all around you, and sudden terror overwhelms you,
11 or 14darkness, so that you cannot see, and a 15flood of 16water covers you.
12 "Is not God high in the heavens? See 17the highest stars, how lofty they are!
13 But you say, 18'What does God know? Can he judge through 19the deep darkness?
14 20Thick clouds veil him, so that he does not see, and he walks on the vault of heaven.'
15 Will you keep to the old way that wicked men have trod?
16 They were snatched away 21before their time; their foundation was washed away.
17 They said to God, 22'Depart from us,' and 23'What can the Almighty do to us?'[a]
18 Yet he filled their houses with good things-- but 24the counsel of the wicked is far from me.
19 25The righteous see it and are glad; the innocent one 26mocks at them,
20 saying, 'Surely our adversaries are cut off, and what they left 27the fire has consumed.'
21 28"Agree with God, and 29be at peace; thereby good will come to you.
22 Receive instruction from 30his mouth, and 31lay up his words in your heart.
23 If you 32return to the Almighty you will be 33built up; if you 34remove injustice far from your tents,
24 if you lay gold in 35the dust, and gold of 36Ophir among the stones of the torrent-bed,
25 then the Almighty will be your gold and your precious silver.
26 For then you 37will delight yourself in the Almighty and 38lift up your face to God.
27 You will 39make your prayer to him, and he will hear you, and you will 40pay your vows.
28 You will decide on a matter, and it will be established for you, and 41light will shine on your ways.
29 For when they are humbled you say, 'It is because of pride';[b] but he saves 42the lowly.
30 He 43delivers even the one who is not innocent,[c] who will be delivered through 44the cleanness of your hands."

Job 22 Commentary

Chapter 22

Eliphaz shows that a man's goodness profits not God. (1-4) Job accused of oppression. (5-14) The world before the flood. (15-20) Eliphaz exhorts Job to repentance. (21-30)

Verses 1-4 Eliphaz considers that, because Job complained so much of his afflictions, he thought God was unjust in afflicting him; but Job was far from thinking so. What Eliphaz says, is unjustly applied to Job, but it is very true, that when God does us good it is not because he is indebted to us. Man's piety is no profit to God, no gain. The gains of religion to men are infinitely greater than the losses of it. God is a Sovereign, who gives no account of his conduct; but he is perfectly wise, just, faithful, good, and merciful. He approves the likeness of his own holiness, and delights in the fruits of his Spirit; he accepts the thankful services of the humble believer, while he rejects the proud claim of the self-confident.

Verses 5-14 Eliphaz brought heavy charges against Job, without reason for his accusations, except that Job was visited as he supposed God always visited every wicked man. He charges him with oppression, and that he did harm with his wealth and power in the time of his prosperity.

Verses 15-20 Eliphaz would have Job mark the old way that wicked men have trodden, and see what the end of their way was. It is good for us to mark it, that we may not walk therein. But if others are consumed, and we are not, instead of blaming them, and lifting up ourselves, as Eliphaz does here, we ought to be thankful to God, and take it for a warning.

Verses 21-30 The answer of Eliphaz wrongly implied that Job had hitherto not known God, and that prosperity in this life would follow his sincere conversion. The counsel Eliphaz here gives is good, though, as to Job, it was built upon a false supposition that he was a stranger and enemy to God. Let us beware of slandering our brethren; and if it be our lot to suffer in this manner, let us remember how Job was treated; yea, how Jesus was reviled, that we may be patient. Let us examine whether there may not be some colour for the slander, and walk watchfully, so as to be clear of all appearances of evil.

Cross References 44

  • 1. Job 2:11
  • 2. See Job 35:7
  • 3. See Psalms 18:32
  • 4. Job 14:3; [Psalms 143:2]
  • 5. Job 24:3, 9; Exodus 22:26; Deuteronomy 24:6, 17; Ezekiel 18:12, 16
  • 6. [Job 31:16]
  • 7. [Job 31:17; Isaiah 58:7; Ezekiel 18:7, 16; Matthew 25:42]
  • 8. [Job 35:9]
  • 9. 2 Kings 5:1; Isaiah 9:15
  • 10. [Luke 1:53]
  • 11. [Job 38:15]
  • 12. Job 31:21; Isaiah 10:2; Ezekiel 22:7
  • 13. Job 18:8-10
  • 14. [Exodus 10:22, 23]
  • 15. Job 38:34
  • 16. [Job 27:20; Ps. 69:1, 2, 14, 15; Psalms 124:5; Lamentations 3:54; Jonah 2:3, 5]
  • 17. [Job 11:8]
  • 18. Psalms 73:11; [Psalms 10:11; Psalms 59:7; Psalms 64:5; Psalms 94:7; Isaiah 29:15; Ezekiel 8:12; Ezekiel 9:9]
  • 19. Job 38:9
  • 20. [Psalms 139:11, 12]; [Proverbs 8:27; Isaiah 40:22]
  • 21. See Job 15:32
  • 22. Job 21:14
  • 23. [Psalms 4:6]
  • 24. Job 21:16
  • 25. Psalms 52:6; Psalms 58:10; Psalms 107:42; [Psalms 64:10]
  • 26. Psalms 2:4
  • 27. Job 1:16
  • 28. See Psalms 119:45
  • 29. [Proverbs 3:2]
  • 30. Proverbs 2:6; [Malachi 2:7]
  • 31. Psalms 119:11
  • 32. [Job 8:5, 6; Job 11:13, 14; Malachi 3:7]
  • 33. Jeremiah 24:6; Jeremiah 33:7
  • 34. Job 11:14
  • 35. Job 20:11; Job 21:26
  • 36. See 1 Kings 9:28
  • 37. Job 27:10; Psalms 37:4; Isaiah 58:14
  • 38. See Job 11:15
  • 39. Job 33:26; Psalms 50:14, 15; Isaiah 58:9
  • 40. Psalms 50:14
  • 41. Proverbs 4:18
  • 42. Psalms 138:6; Proverbs 3:34; Proverbs 29:23; Matthew 23:12; Luke 1:52; James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5
  • 43. [Genesis 18:26]
  • 44. Job 17:9; Psalms 18:20, 24; Psalms 24:4; Psalms 26:6; [Job 9:30]

Footnotes 3

  • [a]. Hebrew them
  • [b]. Or you say, 'It is exaltation'
  • [c]. Septuagint, Syriac, Vulgate; Hebrew him that is not innocent

Chapter Summary


This chapter contains the third and last reply of Eliphaz to Job, in which he charges him with having too high an opinion of himself, of his holiness and righteousness, as if God was profited by it, and laid thereby under obligation to him, whereas he was not, Job 22:1-3; and as if he reproved and chastised him, because of his fear of him, whereas it was because of his sins, Job 22:4,5; an enumeration of which he gives, as of injustice, oppression, cruelty to the poor, and even of atheism and infidelity, for which snares and fears were around him, and various calamities, Job 22:6-14; and compares his way and course of life to that of the men of the old world, and the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah, and suggests that his end would be like theirs, unless he repented, Job 22:15-20; and then concludes with an exhortation to him to return to God by repentance, and to reform, when he should see happy times again, and enjoy much outward and inward prosperity, and be an instrument of doing much good to many, Job 22:21-30.

Job 22 Commentaries

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.