Eliphaz Tells Job to Listen to His Great Wisdom

A man, who was known to like liquor, explained that he drank only to drown his troubles. “After you drown them, why do you continue to drink?” he was asked. “You don’t know my troubles,” he sighed. “My troubles are excellent swimmers. I try to drow … More


Eliphaz brings up as a reminder of the fate of the wicked (vv. 17-20). He points out how suffering is in store each day for those who sin. Eliphaz portrays the idea that Job was a tyrant who struck fear into other people. It seems that this friend hoped to force Job to repent, as he lists the terrible troubles that befall a sinner (vv. 21-35).

  1. Terrifying sounds are heard (v. 21). Job had certainly heard terrifying news (1:14-19).
  2. He will be attacked (v. 21). The Sabeans and Chaldeans did this to Job (1:15, 17).
  3. Darkness haunts him (v. 22). This is possibly a reference to the darkness of death.
  4. He is destined to be a victim of violence (v. 22).
  5. He wanders aimlessly, trying to escape his attackers (v. 23).
  6. Anguish hounds him (v. 24). Eliphaz points out that our own anguish destroys us.
These first six calamities (vv. 21-24) are followed by an explanation of the reasons for such punishment (vv. 25-27). Then Eliphaz continues with his list:
  1. He is forced to live in abandoned houses and crumbling residences (v 28).
  2. He Loses his wealth (v. 29).This certainly happened to Job (Job 1:13-17).
  3. Darkness overtakes him (v. 30).
  4. Fire destroys his crops (v. 30).
  5. He will vanish (v. 30).
  6. Though gaining nothing materially he will be paid with punishment for his sin (v. 31).
  7. Tents are burned (v. 34).
  8. They are parents of vicious lies, (v. 35).


Eliphaz did not have all of his facts straight, and his attempt to jolt Job into repentance failed. If I try to deal with people in my own wisdom, my efforts will also fail.

Job 15:17-35 (English Standard Version)

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