Job Complains to God

Someone has calculated how a typical life span of 70 years is spent. Here is the estimate: Sleep 23 YearsWork16 Years TV8 Years Eating6 YearsTravel6 YearsLeisure4.5 YearsIllness4 YearsDressing2 Years Religon0.5 YearsTOTAL70 Years &n … More


When people suffer so much that their “spirit is broken” they often lose their “fight’ and want life to end (vv. 1-2). It seems this may have been the way Job felt as he sensed that death may be very near. His friends were against him and would not go to court or “post bond” for him (vv. 3-5). People treated him as if he were the scum of the earth (v. 6). His body looked like a shadow of what it had been (v. 7). Job believed that the upright would be so appalled by this that they would go against the godless (v. 8). Even if all was not as it might have been, the righteous should hold on to “his way” because he would grow stronger and stronger for having done so (v. 9).

In a sarcastic way, Job challenges his three friends to try to find some wrongdoing in his life, but they could not because they were not wise (v. 10). His life was fading, his plans and desires were unfulfilled, and his hope of restoration was unrealistic (vv. 11-12). Job thought that the only way out was the grave where there was darkness (v. 13) and corruption by the worm (v. 14) which would be closer to him in the grave than his nearest relatives. As he had said on three previous occasions, he had no hope of ever recovering. Job had expressed hope that God would vindicate him even after death, but his hope was almost gone (v. 15). However, at no time did he ever consider taking his own life. Life is a sacred gift from God, and only God can give it and has the authority to take it away. His body, which is so weary and so sick, is ready to return to the dust (v. 16).


I must never evaluate life only in terms of this present world, because God promises a never ending, wonderful future for me, if I am faithful to Him.

Job 17:1-16 (English Standard Version)

"My spirit is broken; my days are extinct; the graveyard is ready for me. Surely there are mockers about me, and my eye dwells on their provocation. "Lay down a pledge for me with yourself; who is there who will put up security for me? Since you have closed their hearts to understanding, therefore you will not let them triumph. He who informs against his friends to get a share of their property-- the eyes of his children will fail. "He has made me a byword of the peoples, and I am one before whom men spit. My eye has grown dim from vexation, and all my members are like a shadow. The upright are appalled at this, and the innocent stirs himself up against the godless. Yet the righteous holds to his way, and he who has clean hands grows stronger and stronger. But you, come on again, all of you, and I shall not find a wise man among you. My days are past; my plans are broken off, the desires of my heart. They make night into day: 'The light,' they say, 'is near to the darkness.' If I hope for Sheol as my house, if I make my bed in darkness, if I say to the pit, 'You are my father,' and to the worm, 'My mother,' or 'My sister,' where then is my hope? Who will see my hope? Will it go down to the bars of Sheol? Shall we descend together into the dust?"

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