- Zophar charges Job with falsehood and pride, verse 1-4.
- Wishes that God would convince him of his wisdom, justice, and unsearchable perfections, verse 5-9.
- Of his sovereignty, power and the cognisance he takes of men, verse 10-12.
- He assures him, that on his repentance, God would restore him to prosperity, but that the wicked should perish, verse 13-20.
Then answered - How hard is it, to preserve calmness, in the heat of disputation! Eliphaz began modestly: Bildad was a little rougher: But Zophar falls upon Job without mercy. "Those that have a mind to fall out with their brethren, and to fall foul upon them, find it necessary, to put the worst colours they can upon them and their performances, and right or wrong to make them odious."
Answered - Truly, sometimes it should not. Silence is the best confutation of impertinence, and puts the greatest contempt upon it.
Lies - Both concerning thy own innocency, and concerning the counsels and ways of God. Mockest - Our friendly and faithful counsels, chap. 6:14,15,25,26.
Doctrine - Concerning God and his providence. Clean - I am innocent before God; I have not sinned either by my former actions, or by my present expressions. But Zophar perverts Job's words, for he did not deny that he was a sinner, but only that he was an hypocrite.
Speak - Plead with thee according to thy desire: he would soon put thee to silence. We are commonly ready with great assurance to interest God in our quarrels. But they are not always in the right, who are most forward, to appeal to his judgment, and prejudge it against their antagonists.
Secrets - The unsearchable depths of God's wisdom in dealing with his creatures. Double - That they are far greater (the word double being used indefinitely for manifold, or plentiful) than that which is manifested. The secret wisdom of God is infinitely greater than that which is revealed to us by his word or works: the greatest part of what is known of God, is the least part of those perfections that are in him. And therefore thou dost rashly in judging so harshly of his proceedings with thee, because thou dost not comprehend the reasons of them, and in judging thyself innocent, because thou dost not see thy sins; whereas the all-knowing God sees innumerable sins in thee, for which he may utterly destroy thee.
Find out - Discover all the depths of his wisdom, and the reasons of his actions?
Cut off - A person or family. Shut - Its a prison, or in the hands of an enemy. Gather - Whether it pleaseth God to scatter a family, or to gather them together from their dispersions. Hinder - Or, who can contradict him, charge him with injustice in such proceedings?
Knoweth - Though men know but little of God, yet God knows man exactly. He knoweth that every man in the world is guilty of much vanity and folly, and therefore seeth sufficient reason for his severity against the best men. Wickedness - He perceiveth the wickedness of evil men, though it be covered with the veil of religion. Consider - Shall he only see it as an idle spectator, and not observe it as a judge to punish it?
Man - That since the fall is void of all true wisdom, pretends to be wise, and able to pass a censure upon all God's ways and works. Colt - Ignorant, and dull, and stupid, as to divine things, and yet heady and untractable.
Heart - To seek God; turning thy bold contentions with God into humble supplications.
Lift up - Which denotes chearfulness, and holy boldness. Without spot - Having a clear and unspotted conscience. Steadfast - Shall have a strong and comfortable assurance of God's favour.
As waters - Thou shalt remember it no more, than men remember a land-flood, which as it comes, so it goes away suddenly.
Shine - Light in scripture commonly signifies prosperity and glory. Thy comfort, like the morning-light shall shine brighter and brighter, until the perfect day.
Secure - Thy mind shall be quiet and free from terrors, because thou shalt have a firm and well-grounded confidence in God. Dig - Either to fix thy tents, which after the manner of the Arabians were removed from place to place: or to plough the ground, as he had done, chap. 1:14, or to make a fence about thy dwelling.
Fail - Either with grief and tears for their sore calamities: or with long looking for what they shall never attain. Their hope - They shall never obtain deliverance out of their distresses, but shall perish in them. Ghost - Shall be as vain and desperate as the hope of life is in a man, when he is at the very point of death.