Job 9:33

33 If only there were someone to mediate between us, someone to bring us together,

Job 9:33 in Other Translations

33 Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that might lay his hand upon us both.
33 There is no arbiter between us, who might lay his hand on us both.
33 If only there were a mediator between us, someone who could bring us together.
33 How I wish we had an arbitrator to step in and let me get on with life -
33 There is no one to judge between us, to lay his hand on both of us.

Job 9:33 Meaning and Commentary

Job 9:33

Neither is there any daysman betwixt us
Or "one that reproves" F17; who upon hearing a cause reproves him that is found guilty, or is blameworthy, or has done injury to another; but there is no such person to be found, among angels or men, capable of this, supposing, as if Job should say, I should appear to be the injured person; or there is no "umpire" or "arbitrator" F18, to whom the case between us can be referred; for, as Bar Tzemach observes, he that stands in such a character between two parties must be both more wise and more mighty than they; but there is none among all beings wiser and mightier than God:

[that] might lay his hand upon us both;
and restrain them from using any violence to one another, as contending persons are apt to do; and compromise matters, settle and adjust things in difference between them, so as to do justice to both, and make both parties easy, and make peace between them. Herodotus F19 makes mention of a custom among the Arabians,

``when they enter into covenants and agreements with each other, another man stands in the midst of them both, and with a sharp stone cuts the inside of the hands of the covenanters near the larger fingers; and then takes a piece out of each of their garments, and anoints with the blood seven stones that lie between them; and while he is doing this calls upon a deity, and when finished the covenant maker goes with his friends to an host or citizen, if the affair is transacted with a citizen; and the friends reckon it a righteous thing to keep the covenant.''

To which, or some such custom, Job may be thought to allude. Now, whereas Christ is the daysman, umpire and mediator between God and men, who has interposed between them, and has undertaken to manage affairs relating to both; in things pertaining to God, the glory of his justice, and the honour of his law, and to made reconciliation for the sins of men, and to make peace for them with God by the blood of his cross; which he has completely done, being every way qualified for it, inasmuch as he partakes of both natures, and is God and man in one person, and so could put his hand on both, and make both one; or bring them who were at variance to an entire agreement with each other, upon such a bottom, as even the strict justice of God cannot object unto. Now, I say, Job must not be understood as if he was ignorant of this, for he had knowledge of Christ as a Redeemer and Saviour, and so as the Mediator and Peacemaker; the Septuagint version renders it as a wish, "O that there was a mediator between us!" and so it may be considered as a prayer for Christ's incarnation, and that he would appear and do the work of a mediator he was appointed to, which Job plainly saw there was great need of; or, as others F20, "there is no daysman yet"; there will be one, but as yet he is not come; in due time he will, which Job had faith in and full assurance of: but there is no need of such versions and glosses: Job is here not speaking of the affair of salvation, about which he had no doubt, he knew his state was safe, and he had an interest in the living Redeemer and blessed Mediator; but of the present dispensation of Providence, and of the clearing of that up to the satisfaction of his friends, so that he might appear to be an innocent person; and since God did not think fit to change the scene, there was none to interpose on his behalf, and it was in vain for him to contend with God.


F17 (xykwm) "arguens", Montanus, Bolducius, Drusius; "redarguens", Vatablus, Mercerus.
F18 "Arbiter", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Schultens.
F19 Thalia, sive, l. 3. c. 8.
F20 So some in Caryll.

Job 9:33 In-Context

31 you would plunge me into a slime pit so that even my clothes would detest me.
32 “He is not a mere mortal like me that I might answer him, that we might confront each other in court.
33 If only there were someone to mediate between us, someone to bring us together,
34 someone to remove God’s rod from me, so that his terror would frighten me no more.
35 Then I would speak up without fear of him, but as it now stands with me, I cannot.

Cross References 2

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