Job 23

* Job complains that God has withdrawn. (1-7) He asserts his own

integrity. (8-12) The Divine terrors. (13-17)

1-7 Job appeals from his friends to the just judgement of God.

He wants to have his cause tried quickly. Blessed be God, we may

know where to find him. He is in Christ, reconciling the world

unto himself; and upon a mercy-seat, waiting to be gracious.

Thither the sinner may go; and there the believer may order his

cause before Him, with arguments taken from his promises, his

covenant, and his glory. A patient waiting for death and

judgment is our wisdom and duty, and it cannot be without a holy

fear and trembling. A passionate wishing for death or judgement

is our sin and folly, and ill becomes us, as it did Job.
8-12 Job knew that the Lord was every where present; but his

mind was in such confusion, that he could get no fixed view of

God's merciful presence, so as to find comfort by spreading his

case before him. His views were all gloomy. God seemed to stand

at a distance, and frown upon him. Yet Job expressed his

assurance that he should be brought forth, tried, and approved,

for he had obeyed the precepts of God. He had relished and

delighted in the truths and commandments of God. Here we should

notice that Job justified himself rather than God, or in

opposition to him, ch. #32:2|. Job might feel that he was clear

from the charges of his friends, but boldly to assert that,

though visited by the hand of God, it was not a chastisement of

sin, was his error. And he is guilty of a second, when he denies

that there are dealings of Providence with men in this present

life, wherein the injured find redress, and the evil are visited

for their sins.
13-17 As Job does not once question but that his trials are

from the hand of God, and that there is no such thing as chance,

how does he account for them? The principle on which he views

them is, that the hope and reward of the faithful servants of

God are only laid up in another life; and he maintains that it

is plain to all, that the wicked are not treated according to

their deserts in this life, but often directly the reverse. But

though the obtaining of mercy, the first-fruits of the Spirit of

grace, pledges a God, who will certainly finish the work which

he has began; yet the afflicted believer is not to conclude that

all prayer and entreaty will be in vain, and that he should sink

into despair, and faint when he is reproved of Him. He cannot

tell but the intention of God in afflicting him may be to

produce penitence and prayer in his heart. May we learn to obey

and trust the Lord, even in tribulation; to live or die as he

pleases: we know not for what good ends our lives may be

shortened or prolonged.

Copyright information for MHCC