Study Notes

Job 42:1-17


In the book of Job, we have heard the behind-the-scenes conversations between God and satan regarding Job's blamelessness and the trials of testing he was about to be subjected to.

We also got all the detail of the conversations which happened between Job and his three friends, conversations in which Job lamented over his life, expressed his confusion and consternation over his circumstances, and asserted his blamelessness. His friends, however, insisted that he must certainly have a load of unconfessed sin, since they believed that righteous men do not suffer.

Then a young man named Elihu could keep silent no longer. In anger, he insisted that they were all out to lunch in their understanding, and he had the real scoop. He continued his tirade for six chapters until the Lord interrupted his speech with a mighty whirlwind.

God immediately challenged Job with questions which demonstrated God's superiority of power and plan, of knowledge and know-how. Job has been completely humbled.

Last week, we saw the Lord use the dinosaurs as a challenge to Job. "Job, look at these amazing beasts. You're afraid to confront them, but I am their Creator, and you dare to say you wished to confront me?"

Now, as we pick up in chapter 42, we encounter Job's reaction to God's challenge...

42:1-6 Job's Repentance

Job lets the Lord know he's been listening. In verses three and four, he repeats the words of the Lord and gives answers: Job is nothing, God is everything. Job retracts and repents completely.

Quoting The Scripture To God

One of the things that is important to notice about the great people of God in the Bible: they are often quoting the Word of the Lord when they are praying to the Lord. Daniel did this, Jesus did this, Paul and Peter did this.

Why would we want to quote the Scripture to the One Who wrote it in the first place? Doesn't He already know it? Yes, but it blesses His heart to hear that we know it. Plus, there is so much power contained in the Word.

When the disciples were intimidated by the violence and persecution being launched at them by the authorities, they prayed,


In that prayer, they quoted from Psalm 2, because it perfectly applied to their situation. They needed to be reminded that God was in control, and that righteous people had suffered similarly in the past and had endured. By praying the Scripture, they ministered to themselves while they ministered to the Lord!

We would do well to imitate those who set this example of quoting the Word of God when we're praying to God.

42:7 Anger For Misrepresentation

Once He received Job's repentance, God turned His attention to Eliphaz. The statement God makes here is crucial for interpreting the book of Job. You'll remember that as we've gone through the chapters, we have pointed out the errors found in the speeches of Eliphaz the TAY-mawn-ite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Nah-AM-a-thite.

Job was not rebuked for the things which he's spoken about God's character, only for daring to desire a face-to-face meeting to discuss his afflication. But his three friends had spoken things about God which were not true. This caused God's wrath to be kindled against them.

Another huge lesson in the book of Job: God gets angry when people misrepresent Him. That would seem like such an obvious thing, but many people do not seem to pay attention to it. I have heard so many things spoken by religious people on the news since the war started. "God never approves of war." "Allah of Islam and the God of Christians is the same God. People are just approaching Him differently." How does the God of the Bible feel about such statements which misrepresent Him grievously? His wrath is kindled against them.

The Bible says that,

Rom. 1:18 ...the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness

When the truth is suppressed by those who are unrighteous, it angers God. But even "righteous" and religious people often misrepresent the Lord. Paul described them as having...

Rom. 10:2 ...a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge.

Even people who are zealous for God, but misrepresent Him kindle His wrath.

Why Didn't God Rebuke Elihu?

One more thing on this verse: There are many commentators who use this verse to exalt Elihu's speech as being right on track. They say, "God did not rebuke Elihu, which shows that what he said was right on."

I'm sorry, but I cannot stretch my imagination that far. It was clear as we went through chapters 32-37 that Elihu was full of pride and arrogance, anger and fury. He repeated the others' false doctrine and multiplied against Job their false accusations.

Maybe his flowery words about God's power and glory justified him? I believe Paul can answer that:

1Cor. 13:2 If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.

So then, why didn't God rebuke him?

If you notice, God only named the leader of the pack, Eliphaz. His position was clearly superior to the others, and was undoubtedly the oldest, because he is always listed first, and was the first to speak. Bildad and Zophar were only addressed as "your two friends."

I believe that Elihu wasn't mentioned, though he was guilty of making a speech with the same false doctrine, not because of his speech, but because of his age.

It was made clear several times that Elihu was very youthful.

Job 32:4 ...Elihu had waited to speak to Job because they were years older than he.

Job 32:6 ..."I am young in years and you are old"

It is entirely possible that Elihu was under the age of twenty. Why would that make a difference? Because after people turn 20, God seems to put them in a different category of accountability.

- God only required those 20 years old and up to give offerings (Ex. 30:14)

- God only numbered people from 20 years old and up (Ex. 38:26, Num. 1:18)

- Only those from 20 years old and up went out to war (Num. 26:2)

- No one under 20 years old was judged for unbelief in the wilderness (Num. 32:11)

There were no doubt 17- and 19-year olds who were unbelieving and fearful in the desert, but God did not rebuke or chastise them. Job's oldest friend got it the worst, and the youngest one seemed to get mercy.

It seems that the longer you live, the more you're held accountable. Jesus said,

Luke 12:47-48 "And that slave who knew his master's will and did not get ready or act in accord with his will, will receive many lashes, but the one who did not know it, and committed deeds worthy of a flogging, will receive but few. From everyone who has been given much, much will be required; and to whom they entrusted much, of him they will ask all the more."

42:8-9 Burnt Offerings

God instructed them to offer burnt offerings. Years later, the Levitical priests were instructed in the details of burnt offerings, as we read in the first chapter of Leviticus. It is interesting to study that chapter and see how many ways the Burnt Offering is a prophetic picture of Jesus Christ.

You see, the purpose of the burnt offering was for a person to be accepted before the Lord, to have atonement - his sin covered.

• The sacrifice was to be a male without defect, as Jesus was.

2Cor. 5:21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf

1John 3:5 Him there is no sin.

• The worshipper was to lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering, transferring the guilt of their sin to the animal, making the death a substitute for their own. Jesus was delivered up for our transgressions (Rom 4:25).

Isa. 53:4-5 Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed.

1Pet. 3:18 For Christ also died for sins once for all, {the} just for the unjust...

• The animal was also to be killed by the worshipper himself. We are responsible for the Burnt Offering, for the death of Jesus Christ. He died for our sins.

• The killing of the offering was also to take place in a specific direction from the altar: north. Interesting that our Burnt Offering, Jesus Christ, was crucified on Mount Calvary - which lies north of Temple Mount.

• The head of the burnt offering was to be removed as well - the head being physically separated from the body. Christ is the head of the church (Eph. 5:23; Col. 1:18), and His crucifixion physically removed Him from the body of Christ, the church. That was also demonstrated in His tomb, when it was discovered that...

John 20:7 ...the face-cloth which had been on His head, not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself.

• Lastly, the burnt offerings were a soothing aroma to the Lord. The Bible tells us that Christ...

Eph. 5:2 ...gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

There are several more prophetic details about the Burnt Offering which we haven't had time to review tonight. For more detail, you can pick up the tape from Leviticus chapter one.

42:10 Restoration After Intercession

This is a great picture. Job's fortunes were restored when he prayed for his friends. You know, they hadn't been very good friends. They'd trashed his reputation, attacked his character, and invented sinful stories about him. But God's has said to us...

Luke 6:27-28 " your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you."

We think that some people deserve a letter bomb. But the only things we're supposed to be sending their way are blessings, forgiveness, and prayers of intercession.

You may have no idea how that obedience will bless you. Conversely, you may have no idea how failing to forgive will harm you. Jesus told the parable of a man who owed the king a lot of money, but was forgiven of the debt.

Matt. 18:28-35 "But that slave went out and found one of his fellow slaves who owed him a hundred denarii; and he seized him and began to choke him, saying, ‘Pay back what you owe.' So his fellow slave fell to the ground and began to plead with him, saying, ‘Have patience with me and I will repay you.' But he was unwilling and went and threw him in prison until he should pay back what was owed. So when his fellow slaves saw what had happened, they were deeply grieved and came and reported to their lord all that had happened. Then summoning him, his lord *said to him, ‘You wicked slave, I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. Should you not also have had mercy on your fellow slave, in the same way that I had mercy on you?' And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him. My heavenly Father will also do the same to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart."

Can you see from this parable that when you fail to forgive someone, it doesn't just cast them into a prison. You also are imprisoned by your own unforgiveness, and tortured by it.

On the other hand, you can be like Job:

Luke 6:37 ...pardon, and you will be pardoned.

42:11-17 Consoled And Comforted

Job's life was once again comfortable. Although he had wished for death earlier, he did end up "living happily ever after." His monetary fortune was larger than before. He had more children (including Yem-ee-MAW, Kets-ee-AW, and KEH-ren Hap-POOK).

And when Job did die, 140 years later, he was "an old man and full of days."

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