Job 19

Job

1 Then Job replied:
2 “How long will you torment me and crush me with words?
3 Ten times now you have reproached me; shamelessly you attack me.
4 If it is true that I have gone astray, my error remains my concern alone.
5 If indeed you would exalt yourselves above me and use my humiliation against me,
6 then know that God has wronged me and drawn his net around me.
7 “Though I cry, ‘Violence!’ I get no response; though I call for help, there is no justice.
8 He has blocked my way so I cannot pass; he has shrouded my paths in darkness.
9 He has stripped me of my honor and removed the crown from my head.
10 He tears me down on every side till I am gone; he uproots my hope like a tree.
11 His anger burns against me; he counts me among his enemies.
12 His troops advance in force; they build a siege ramp against me and encamp around my tent.
13 “He has alienated my family from me; my acquaintances are completely estranged from me.
14 My relatives have gone away; my closest friends have forgotten me.
15 My guests and my female servants count me a foreigner; they look on me as on a stranger.
16 I summon my servant, but he does not answer, though I beg him with my own mouth.
17 My breath is offensive to my wife; I am loathsome to my own family.
18 Even the little boys scorn me; when I appear, they ridicule me.
19 All my intimate friends detest me; those I love have turned against me.
20 I am nothing but skin and bones; I have escaped only by the skin of my teeth.[a]
21 “Have pity on me, my friends, have pity, for the hand of God has struck me.
22 Why do you pursue me as God does? Will you never get enough of my flesh?
23 “Oh, that my words were recorded, that they were written on a scroll,
24 that they were inscribed with an iron tool on[b] lead, or engraved in rock forever!
25 I know that my redeemer[c] lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.[d]
26 And after my skin has been destroyed, yet[e] in[f] my flesh I will see God;
27 I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!
28 “If you say, ‘How we will hound him, since the root of the trouble lies in him,[g]
29 you should fear the sword yourselves; for wrath will bring punishment by the sword, and then you will know that there is judgment.[h]

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Job 19 Commentary

Chapter 19

Job complains of unkind usage. (1-7) God was the Author of his afflictions. (8-22) Job's belief in the resurrection. (23-29)

Verses 1-7 Job's friends blamed him as a wicked man, because he was so afflicted; here he describes their unkindness, showing that what they condemned was capable of excuse. Harsh language from friends, greatly adds to the weight of afflictions: yet it is best not to lay it to heart, lest we harbour resentment. Rather let us look to Him who endured the contradiction of sinners against himself, and was treated with far more cruelty than Job was, or we can be.

Verses 8-22 How doleful are Job's complaints! What is the fire of hell but the wrath of God! Seared consciences will feel it hereafter, but do not fear it now: enlightened consciences fear it now, but shall not feel it hereafter. It is a very common mistake to think that those whom God afflicts he treats as his enemies. Every creature is that to us which God makes it to be; yet this does not excuse Job's relations and friends. How uncertain is the friendship of men! but if God be our Friend, he will not fail us in time of need. What little reason we have to indulge the body, which, after all our care, is consumed by diseases it has in itself. Job recommends himself to the compassion of his friends, and justly blames their harshness. It is very distressing to one who loves God, to be bereaved at once of outward comfort and of inward consolation; yet if this, and more, come upon a believer, it does not weaken the proof of his being a child of God and heir of glory.

Verses 23-29 The Spirit of God, at this time, seems to have powerfully wrought on the mind of Job. Here he witnessed a good confession; declared the soundness of his faith, and the assurance of his hope. Here is much of Christ and heaven; and he that said such things are these, declared plainly that he sought the better country, that is, the heavenly. Job was taught of God to believe in a living Redeemer; to look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come; he comforted himself with the expectation of these. Job was assured, that this Redeemer of sinners from the yoke of Satan and the condemnation of sin, was his Redeemer, and expected salvation through him; and that he was a living Redeemer, though not yet come in the flesh; and that at the last day he would appear as the Judge of the world, to raise the dead, and complete the redemption of his people. With what pleasure holy Job enlarges upon this! May these faithful sayings be engraved by the Holy Spirit upon our hearts. We are all concerned to see that the root of the matter be in us. A living, quickening, commanding principle of grace in the heart, is the root of the matter; as necessary to our religion as the root of the tree, to which it owes both its fixedness and its fruitfulness. Job and his friends differed concerning the methods of Providence, but they agreed in the root of the matter, the belief of another world.

Cross References 53

  • 1. Job 13:25
  • 2. Job 6:9
  • 3. S Genesis 31:7
  • 4. Job 20:3
  • 5. Job 6:24
  • 6. Psalms 35:26; Psalms 38:16; Psalms 55:12
  • 7. S Job 6:29; Job 27:2
  • 8. S Job 18:8
  • 9. S Job 10:3
  • 10. Job 30:20; Psalms 22:2
  • 11. Job 30:24,28; Job 31:35; Psalms 5:2
  • 12. S Job 9:24; Habakkuk 1:2-4
  • 13. Job 3:23; Lamentations 3:7; Hosea 2:6
  • 14. Job 3:26; Job 23:17; Job 30:26; Ecclesiastes 6:4; Isaiah 59:9; Jeremiah 8:15; Jeremiah 14:19; Lamentations 3:2
  • 15. S Job 12:17
  • 16. Genesis 43:28; Exodus 12:42; Psalms 15:4; Psalms 50:23; Proverbs 14:31
  • 17. S Job 2:8; Job 29:14; Psalms 89:39,44; Lamentations 5:16
  • 18. S Job 12:14
  • 19. S Job 7:6
  • 20. S Job 14:7; Job 24:20
  • 21. Job 16:9
  • 22. S Job 13:24
  • 23. S Job 16:13
  • 24. S Job 16:10; Job 30:12
  • 25. S Job 3:23
  • 26. Psalms 69:8
  • 27. ver 19; Job 16:7; Job 42:11; Psalms 31:11; Psalms 38:11; Psalms 88:8
  • 28. ver 19; S 2 Samuel 15:12; Job 12:4; Job 16:20; Psalms 88:18; Jeremiah 20:10; Jeremiah 38:22
  • 29. Genesis 14:14
  • 30. Ecclesiastes 2:7
  • 31. Psalms 38:5
  • 32. S 2 Kings 2:23
  • 33. S Job 16:10
  • 34. S ver 14; S Job 6:14; Psalms 55:12-13
  • 35. Job 30:10; Psalms 38:11
  • 36. S ver 13; John 13:18
  • 37. S Job 2:5; Job 33:21; Psalms 102:5
  • 38. S Job 6:14
  • 39. S Judges 2:15; S Job 4:5; S Job 10:3; Lamentations 3:1
  • 40. S Job 13:25; Job 16:11
  • 41. ver 6
  • 42. S 2 Chronicles 28:9; Psalms 14:4; Psalms 27:2; Psalms 69:26; Proverbs 30:14; Isaiah 53:4
  • 43. S Exodus 17:14; S Psalms 40:7; S Isaiah 8:1; Isaiah 30:8
  • 44. Jeremiah 17:1
  • 45. S Job 16:18
  • 46. S Exodus 6:6; S Leviticus 25:25; Psalms 68:5; Psalms 78:35; Proverbs 23:11; Isaiah 41:14; Isaiah 43:14; Isaiah 44:6,24; Isaiah 47:4; Isaiah 48:17; Isaiah 49:26; Isaiah 54:5; Isaiah 59:20; Isaiah 60:16; Jeremiah 50:34
  • 47. S 1 Samuel 14:39; Job 16:19
  • 48. S Numbers 12:8; Psalms 17:15; S Matthew 5:8; 1 Corinthians 13:12; 1 John 3:2
  • 49. Luke 2:30
  • 50. Psalms 42:1; Psalms 63:1; Psalms 84:2; Psalms 73:26
  • 51. S Job 13:25
  • 52. Job 15:22
  • 53. Job 22:4; Job 27:13-23; Psalms 1:5; Psalms 9:7; Psalms 58:11; Ecclesiastes 3:17; Ecclesiastes 11:9; Ecclesiastes 12:14

Footnotes 8

  • [a]. Or "only by my gums"
  • [b]. Or "and"
  • [c]. Or "vindicator"
  • [d]. Or "on my grave"
  • [e]. Or "And after I awake," / "though this body has been destroyed," / "then"
  • [f]. Or "destroyed," / "apart from"
  • [g]. Many Hebrew manuscripts, Septuagint and Vulgate; most Hebrew manuscripts "me"
  • [h]. Or "sword," / "that you may come to know the Almighty"

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO JOB 19

This chapter contains Job's reply to Bildad's second speech, in which he complains of the ill usage of his friends, of their continuing to vex him, and to beat, and bruise, and break him in pieces with their hard words, and to reproach him, and carry it strange to him, Job 19:1-3; which he thought was very cruel, since, if he was mistaken, the mistake lay with himself, Job 19:4; and if they were determined to go on at this rate, he would have them observe, that his afflictions were of God, and therefore should take care to what they imputed them, since he could not get the reasons of them, or his cause to be heard, though he vehemently and importunately sought it, Job 19:5-7; and then gives an enumeration of the several particulars of his distress, all which he ascribes to God, Job 19:8-12; and he enlarges upon that part of his unhappy case, respecting the alienation of his nearest relations, most intimate acquaintance and friends, from him, and their contempt of him, and the like treatment he met with from his servants, and even young children, Job 19:13-19; all which, with other troubles, had such an effect upon him as to reduce him to a mere skeleton, and which he mentions to move the pity of these his friends, now conversing with him, Job 19:20-22; and yet after all, and in the midst of it, and which was his great support under his trials, he expresses his strong faith in his living Redeemer, who should appear on the earth in the latter day, and be his Saviour, and in the resurrection of the dead through him, which he believed he should share in, and in all the happiness consequent on it; and he wishes this confession of his faith might be written and engraven, and be preserved on a rock for ever for the good of posterity, Job 19:23-27; and closes the chapter with an expostulation with his friends, dissuading them from persecuting him any longer, since there was no reason for it in himself, and it might be attended with bad consequences to them, Job 19:28,29.

Job 19 Commentaries