Job 26

Listen to Job 26
1 Then Job spoke again:
2 “How you have helped the powerless! How you have saved the weak!
3 How you have enlightened my stupidity! What wise advice you have offered!
4 Where have you gotten all these wise sayings? Whose spirit speaks through you?
5 “The dead tremble— those who live beneath the waters.
6 The underworld is naked in God’s presence. The place of destruction is uncovered.
7 God stretches the northern sky over empty space and hangs the earth on nothing.
8 He wraps the rain in his thick clouds, and the clouds don’t burst with the weight.
9 He covers the face of the moon, shrouding it with his clouds.
10 He created the horizon when he separated the waters; he set the boundary between day and night.
11 The foundations of heaven tremble; they shudder at his rebuke.
12 By his power the sea grew calm. By his skill he crushed the great sea monster.
13 His Spirit made the heavens beautiful, and his power pierced the gliding serpent.
14 These are just the beginning of all that he does, merely a whisper of his power. Who, then, can comprehend the thunder of his power?”

Job 26 Commentary

Chapter 26

Job reproves Bildad. (1-4) Job acknowledges the power of God. (5-14)

Verses 1-4 Job derided Bildad's answer; his words were a mixture of peevishness and self-preference. Bildad ought to have laid before Job the consolations, rather than the terrors of the Almighty. Christ knows how to speak what is proper for the weary, ( Isaiah 50:4 ) ; and his ministers should not grieve those whom God would not have made sad. We are often disappointed in our expectations from our friends who should comfort us; but the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, never mistakes, nor fails of his end.

Verses 5-14 Many striking instances are here given of the wisdom and power of God, in the creation and preservation of the world. If we look about us, to the earth and waters here below, we see his almighty power. If we consider hell beneath, though out of our sight, yet we may conceive the discoveries of God's power there. If we look up to heaven above, we see displays of God's almighty power. By his Spirit, the eternal Spirit that moved upon the face of the waters, the breath of his mouth, ( Psalms 33:6 ) , he has not only made the heavens, but beautified them. By redemption, all the other wonderful works of the Lord are eclipsed; and we may draw near, and taste his grace, learn to love him, and walk with delight in his ways. The ground of the controversy between Job and the other disputants was, that they unjustly thought from his afflictions that he must have been guilty of heinous crimes. They appear not to have duly considered the evil and just desert of original sin; nor did they take into account the gracious designs of God in purifying his people. Job also darkened counsel by words without knowledge. But his views were more distinct. He does not appear to have alleged his personal righteousness as the ground of his hope towards God. Yet what he admitted in a general view of his case, he in effect denied, while he complained of his sufferings as unmerited and severe; that very complaint proving the necessity for their being sent, in order to his being further humbled in the sight of God.

Footnotes 4

  • [a]. Hebrew Sheol.
  • [b]. Hebrew Abaddon.
  • [c]. Or covers his throne.
  • [d]. Hebrew Rahab, the name of a mythical sea monster that represents chaos in ancient literature.

Chapter Summary

INTRODUCTION TO JOB 26

In this chapter Job, in a very sarcastic manner, rallies Bildad on the weakness and impertinence of his reply, and sets it in a very ridiculous light; showing it to be quite foolish and stupid, and not at all to the purpose, and besides was none of his own, but what he had borrowed from another, Job 26:1-4; and if it was of any avail in the controversy to speak of the greatness and majesty of God, of his perfections and attributes, of his ways and works, he could say greater and more glorious things of God than he had done, and as he does, Job 26:5-13; beginning at the lower parts of the creation, and gradually ascending to the superior and celestial ones; and concludes with observing, that, after all, it was but little that was known of God and his ways, by himself, by Bildad, or by any mortal creature, Job 26:14.

Job 26 Commentaries