Welcome to our Job 9 summary, where we’ll study the Job, chapter 9, verses 24 through 35. If you’d like to study verses 1-11 read our Job 9 commentary and our Job 9 explained article for verses 12-23.
So, God laughs at the plight of the innocent. God also – supposedly – causes injustice in this world. Verse 24.
9:24 The earth is given into the hand of the wicked:
he covereth the faces of the judges thereof;
if not, [where/he], [and/then] who is he? [that covers the faces…]
So, Job is envisioning a time where wicked men have their way in this life and no one can stop them. At that very moment, God – allegedly – causes their judges to turn a blind eye to the wickedness.
And Job realizes this accusation is shocking – even to him. And that’s why he asks that rhetorical question – If it’s not God that’s doing this, then who is?
So, we saw Job assert that Bildad’s way of thinking – that good always prospers and evil always fails in this life – that this thinking just doesn’t add up with Job’s experiences or the experiences of so many others in this cruel world.
Job 9 Summary | Life
And so, now Job returns to considering his own life. Verse 25.
9:25 Now my days are swifter than a [post/runner]:
they flee away, they see no [good/happiness].
9:26 They [are passed away/slip by/glide by] as the [swift ships/reed boats]:
as the eagle that [hasteth/swoops down] to the prey.
So, Job’s life is flying by with absolutely no enjoyment.
Job 9 Summary | Can’t Pretend It’s OK
And Job would like to feign as though everything was fine – but it just won’t work because God – in his mind – is against him. Verse 27.
9:27 If I say, I will forget my complaint,
I will [leave off/change] my [heaviness/expression], and [comfort myself/be cheerful]:
9:28 I [am afraid of/dread] all my [sorrows/pains/sufferings],
I know that thou wilt not [hold me innocent/acquit me/hold me blameless].
So, even when Job tries to “look on the bright side” he feels as though God will not allow it because he apparently – in Job’s mind – wrongfully thinks that Job is guilty. Which of course we know to be false. God doesn’t think Job is guilty.
Job 9 Summary | Question
And then Job asks this question in verse 29.
9:29 If I be [accounted as…] [wicked/guilty],
why then [labour I/weary myself] in vain?
And I think here, Job might be expressing despair. If God is going to count him as wicked, then why even go on?
Job 9 Summary | Never Good Enough
Because, Job feels that whatever he does is not good enough for God. Verse 30.
9:30 If I wash myself with snow water, [which would be pretty difficult to find in the desert southeast of Israel – where Job was…]
and make my hands never so clean;
9:31 Yet shalt thou plunge me in the [ditch/pit/slimy pit],
and mine own clothes shall abhor me.
So, if Job tries his best to physically cleanse himself, God will just pick him up – as it were – and throw him into a mud pit where his clothes will get totally filthy.
And that’s just a picture of Job’s frustration over trying to be righteous and yet having God apparently ignore those attempts and instead respond to those attempts with acting as if Job were totally wicked.
So, it’s totally understandable that with all of this confusion, Job would want to confront God and explain his situation to him. Because apparently God is not quite aware of the whole situation – at least from Job’s perspective!
Job 9 Summary | No Court Date
And that’s why Job expresses some frustration with not being able to confront God in a court in order to get all of this settled and straightened out. Verse 32.
9:32 For he is not a man, as I am, that I should answer him,
and we should come together in judgment. [in a court…]
9:33 Neither is there any [daysman/umpire/arbiter] betwixt us,
that might lay his hand upon us both.
And because that’s the case – that he can’t get God in court to argue with him that what he’s doing in Job’s life isn’t right – Job just speaks out in a wishful way, begging for God to remove his punishing hand from him – and yet, realizing that this would never happen. Verse 34.
Tags: Old Testament Poetry Old Testament Wisdom
9:34 Let him take his rod away from me,
and let not his fear terrify me:
9:35 Then would I speak, and not fear him;
but it is not so with me.