Job 20: Condemned by Another “Friend”

Yet he shall perish for ever like his own dung: they which have seen him shall say, Where is he? He shall fly away as a dream, and shall not be found: yea, he shall be chased away as a vision of the night. Job 20:7,8 KJV

Zophar Condemns Job

The appeal for pity falls on deaf ears. Zophar sternly tells Job to stop defending himself. He falls back on common knowledge about God and notes that while the wicked may prosper for a time, they suffer in the end. Again Zophar illustrates by naming events that have happened to Job. Zophar’s accusation is clear. All the years that prosperity seemed to indicate God’s blessing, there must have been some hidden wickedness in Job. Now the depth of Job’s suffering has revealed to all the extent of the hidden wickedness!

4  “Do you not know this of old, Since man was placed on earth, 5  That the triumphing of the wicked is short, And the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment?

20:4,5 Zophar confronts Job’s confident statement in 19:25 with a sarcastic rebuke. Since Job supposedly knew so much about his Redeemer, surely he knew the wisdom teaching that the wicked prosper only for a short time.

29  This is the portion from God for a wicked man, The heritage appointed to him by God.”

—  In this summary verdict, Zophar suggests that it is too late for Job to repent (contrast his previous words in 11:13-20). God would have no clemency for such a wicked person.

–> These are the words spoken by Job’s closest friends. How unreliable a human relationship is unless it is built on the foundation of faith. The friends condemn Job for being evil without knowing for sure whether that is truly the case.

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