Moreover Job continued his parable, and said,
2 As God liveth, who hath taken away my judgment; and the Almighty, who hath vexed my soul;
3 All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils;
4 My lips shall not speak wickedness, nor my tongue utter deceit.
5 God forbid that I should justify you: till I die I will not remove mine integrity from me.
6 My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go: my heart shall not reproach me so long as I live.
7 Let mine enemy be as the wicked, and he that riseth up against me as the unrighteous.
8 For what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he hath gained, when God taketh away his soul?
9 Will God hear his cry when trouble cometh upon him?
10 Will he delight himself in the Almighty? will he always call upon God?
11 I will teach you by the hand of God: that which is with the Almighty will I not conceal.
12 Behold, all ye yourselves have seen it; why then are ye thus altogether vain?
13 This is the portion of a wicked man with God, and the heritage of oppressors, which they shall receive of the Almighty.
14 If his children be multiplied, it is for the sword: and his offspring shall not be satisfied with bread.
15 Those that remain of him shall be buried in death: and his widows shall not weep.
16 Though he heap up silver as the dust, and prepare raiment as the clay;
17 He may prepare it, but the just shall put it on, and the innocent shall divide the silver.
18 He buildeth his house as a moth, and as a booth that the keeper maketh.
19 The rich man shall lie down, but he shall not be gathered: he openeth his eyes, and he is not.
20 Terrors take hold on him as waters, a tempest stealeth him away in the night.
21 The east wind carrieth him away, and he departeth: and as a storm hurleth him out of his place.
22 For God shall cast upon him, and not spare: he would fain flee out of his hand.
23 Men shall clap their hands at him, and shall hiss him out of his place.
“As God lives, as long as His breath is in my body, I will maintain my integrity: I will not agree with you! I will teach YOU about GOD!”
The brethren had spent a lot of breath trying to convince Job he was a great sinner and Job knew it wasn’t true. Later, he tries to convince them his life had really been quite noble: He had committed himself to virtue and generosity, he didn’t deserve all those tragedies. “If only I could take up my case with the Almighty! If only He would give me a hearing!”
Here, he seems to agree with his friends—bad things happen to bad people.
They do, but so do good things. God sends His rain on the just and the unjust, and makes His sun shine on the evil and the good. But there’s also supernatural evil—the “satan” [adversary]—who makes trouble in general, and harasses especially those who have chosen God. It’s too complicated to judge.
The point seems to be, don’t assess a person by what’s happening to them—and don’t envy the wicked their success: There’s always a bigger picture, always an afterward. Learn to wait.
Artist (designs and builds stain-glassed windows)
Spokane Valley Seventh-day Adventist Church, Washington USA