Job 18


1 Then Bildad the Shuhite replied:
2 “When will you end these speeches? Be sensible, and then we can talk.
3 Why are we regarded as cattle and considered stupid in your sight?
4 You who tear yourself to pieces in your anger, is the earth to be abandoned for your sake? Or must the rocks be moved from their place?
5 “The lamp of a wicked man is snuffed out; the flame of his fire stops burning.
6 The light in his tent becomes dark; the lamp beside him goes out.
7 The vigor of his step is weakened; his own schemes throw him down.
8 His feet thrust him into a net; he wanders into its mesh.
9 A trap seizes him by the heel; a snare holds him fast.
10 A noose is hidden for him on the ground; a trap lies in his path.
11 Terrors startle him on every side and dog his every step.
12 Calamity is hungry for him; disaster is ready for him when he falls.
13 It eats away parts of his skin; death’s firstborn devours his limbs.
14 He is torn from the security of his tent and marched off to the king of terrors.
15 Fire resides[a] in his tent; burning sulfur is scattered over his dwelling.
16 His roots dry up below and his branches wither above.
17 The memory of him perishes from the earth; he has no name in the land.
18 He is driven from light into the realm of darkness and is banished from the world.
19 He has no offspring or descendants among his people, no survivor where once he lived.
20 People of the west are appalled at his fate; those of the east are seized with horror.
21 Surely such is the dwelling of an evil man; such is the place of one who does not know God.”

Job 18 Commentary

Chapter 18

Bildad reproves Job. (1-4) Ruin attends the wicked. (5-10) The ruin of the wicked. (11-21)

Verses 1-4 Bildad had before given Job good advice and encouragement; here he used nothing but rebukes, and declared his ruin. And he concluded that Job shut out the providence of God from the management of human affairs, because he would not admit himself to be wicked.

Verses 5-10 Bildad describes the miserable condition of a wicked man; in which there is much certain truth, if we consider that a sinful condition is a sad condition, and that sin will be men's ruin, if they do not repent. Though Bildad thought the application of it to Job was easy, yet it was not safe nor just. It is common for angry disputants to rank their opponents among God's enemies, and to draw wrong conclusions from important truths. The destruction of the wicked is foretold. That destruction is represented under the similitude of a beast or bird caught in a snare, or a malefactor taken into custody. Satan, as he was a murderer, so he was a robber, from the beginning. He, the tempter, lays snares for sinners wherever they go. If he makes them sinful like himself, he will make them miserable like himself. Satan hunts for the precious life. In the transgression of an evil man there is a snare for himself, and God is preparing for his destruction. See here how the sinner runs himself into the snare.

Verses 11-21 Bildad describes the destruction wicked people are kept for, in the other world, and which in some degree, often seizes them in this world. The way of sin is the way of fear, and leads to everlasting confusion, of which the present terrors of an impure conscience are earnests, as in Cain and Judas. Miserable indeed is a wicked man's death, how secure soever his life was. See him dying; all that he trusts to for his support shall be taken from him. How happy are the saints, and how indebted to the lord Jesus, by whom death is so far done away and changed, that this king of terrors is become a friend and a servant! See the wicked man's family sunk and cut off. His children shall perish, either with him or after him. Those who consult the true honour of their family, and its welfare, will be afraid of withering all by sin. The judgments of God follow the wicked man after death in this world, as a proof of the misery his soul is in after death, and as an earnest of that everlasting shame and contempt to which he shall rise in the great day. The memory of the just is blessed, but the name of the wicked shall rot, Pr. 10:7 . It would be well if this report of wicked men would cause any to flee from the wrath to come, from which their power, policy, and riches cannot deliver them. But Jesus ever liveth to deliver all who trust in him. Bear up then, suffering believers. Ye shall for a little time have sorrow, but your Beloved, your Saviour, will see you again; your hearts shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh away.

Cross References 54

  • 1. S Job 8:1
  • 2. S Job 8:2; S Job 16:3
  • 3. S Job 12:7
  • 4. Psalms 73:22
  • 5. Job 13:14
  • 6. S Job 16:9
  • 7. Job 14:18
  • 8. Job 21:17; Job 35:15; Proverbs 13:9; Proverbs 20:20; Proverbs 24:20; Jeremiah 25:10; Matthew 25:8; John 8:12
  • 9. S Job 5:14; Job 12:25; Job 24:17; Job 38:15
  • 10. S Job 8:22
  • 11. S Job 5:14
  • 12. S Job 11:17; S Job 12:25
  • 13. S Job 13:26
  • 14. Psalms 18:36; Proverbs 4:12
  • 15. S Job 5:13
  • 16. S Job 15:6
  • 17. Job 19:6; Job 22:10; Psalms 9:15; Psalms 10:9; Psalms 35:7; Psalms 57:6; Psalms 66:11; Psalms 140:5; Lamentations 1:13; Micah 7:2; Habakkuk 1:15
  • 18. Job 22:10; Job 30:12; Isaiah 24:18; Jeremiah 48:44; Amos 5:19
  • 19. Proverbs 5:22
  • 20. Proverbs 7:22; Isaiah 51:20
  • 21. S 1 Samuel 28:9
  • 22. Psalms 140:5
  • 23. ver 14; S Job 6:4; Job 20:25; Job 24:17; Psalms 55:4; Psalms 88:15; Isaiah 28:19; Jeremiah 15:8; Lamentations 2:22
  • 24. S Job 15:21; Psalms 31:13; Jeremiah 6:25; Jeremiah 20:3
  • 25. ver 18; Job 20:8; Isaiah 22:18
  • 26. Job 21:17
  • 27. Isaiah 8:21; Isaiah 9:20; Isaiah 65:13
  • 28. Job 31:3
  • 29. Job 15:23
  • 30. Numbers 12:12
  • 31. Zechariah 14:12
  • 32. S Job 8:22
  • 33. Job 15:24
  • 34. S ver 11
  • 35. ver 18; Job 20:26
  • 36. S Genesis 19:24; Psalms 11:6
  • 37. Isaiah 5:24; Hosea 5:12; Hosea 9:1-16; Amos 2:9
  • 38. S Genesis 27:28; S Job 8:12; S Job 15:30; Malachi 4:1
  • 39. S Deuteronomy 32:26
  • 40. Deuteronomy 9:14; Psalms 9:5; Psalms 69:28; Proverbs 10:7; Isaiah 14:22
  • 41. Job 24:20; Psalms 34:16; Proverbs 2:22; Proverbs 10:7; Isaiah 49:15
  • 42. S Job 5:14
  • 43. S ver 11
  • 44. S Job 11:20; Job 30:8
  • 45. Psalms 37:28; Isaiah 1:4; Isaiah 14:20; Jeremiah 22:30
  • 46. Psalms 21:10; Psalms 109:13; Isaiah 14:22
  • 47. S 2 Kings 10:11; S Ezekiel 17:8
  • 48. Job 27:14-15
  • 49. Psalms 22:6-7; Isaiah 52:14; Isaiah 53:2-3; Ezekiel 27:35
  • 50. Psalms 37:13; Jeremiah 46:21; Jeremiah 50:27,31; Ezekiel 7:7
  • 51. Job 21:28
  • 52. Isaiah 57:20
  • 53. S Job 7:10
  • 54. S Job 4:21; Jeremiah 9:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:5

Footnotes 1

  • [a]. Or "Nothing he had remains"

Chapter Summary


In this chapter is Bildad's second reply to Job, in which he falls with great fury upon him, very sharply inveighs against him, and very highly charges him; the charges he brings against him are talkativeness and inattention to what was said to him, Job 18:1,2; contempt of his friends, impatience under his affliction, and pride and arrogance, as if the whole world, the course of nature and providence, and God himself all must give way to him, Job 18:3,4; nevertheless, he is assured of the miserable state of a wicked man, sooner or later, which is described by the extinction of his light of prosperity, Job 18:5,6; by the defeat of his counsels, being ensnared in a net laid for him, Job 18:7-10; by the terrible judgments of the sword, famine, and pestilence, by one or the other of which he is brought to death, the king of terrors, Job 18:11-14; by the destruction of his habitation and of his posterity, so that he has none to hear his name, or perpetuate his memory, Job 18:15-17; by his being driven out of the world, leaving no issue behind him, to the astonishment of all that knew him, Job 18:18-20; and the chapter is closed with this observation, that this is the common case of wicked and irreligious persons, Job 18:21.

Job 18 Commentaries

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