Job 19:28-21:34 Reading the Passage

Be Assured that There Will Be a Day of Final Judgment – Job 19:28-21:34

19 (28) If you say, “How will we prosecute him? Surely, the root of the trouble is in him!” (29) you yourselves should fear the sword; for what you are doing are iniquities worthy of punishment by the sword! Be aware that there is a day of judgment.

20 Then Zophar the Naamathite replied, (2) My troubled thoughts prompt me to answer because of the agitation I feel within me. (3) I have heard a rebuke that insults me, and my understanding inspires me to reply. (4) Surely you are aware of how it has been from of old, ever since man was placed on the earth; (5) namely, that the mirth of the wicked is brief, and the joy of the godless lasts for only a moment. (6) Though his success may reach the heavens and his head touch the clouds, (7) he will perish forever, like his own dung. Those who saw him will say, “Where is he?” (8) He will fly away like a dream, no more to be found; he will be chased away like a vision of the night. (9) The eye that saw him will not look at him again; his community will no longer see him.

(10) His children will be required to make amends to the poor—his hands must give back his wealth. (11) The youthful vigor that once filled his bones will lie with him in the dust. (12) Although evil tastes sweet in his mouth and he hides it under his tongue—(13) he relishes it, refusing to let it go, keeping it in his mouth—(14) his food will turn sour in his stomach; inside him it will become the venom of asps. (15) He swallowed riches, but will vomit them; God will make his belly vomit them up. (16) He sucks the poison of asps; the viper’s fangs will kill him. (17) He will not enjoy the streams of oil, the river flowing with honey and curds. (18) That for which he labored he will give back, uneaten; he will not enjoy the profit derived from his business transactions. (19) All this will happen to him because he oppressed the poor and left them destitute; he seized houses that he did not build. (20) Because his craving is never satisfied, he cannot escape from his greed. (21) No one has survived his devouring appetite; therefore his prosperity will not endure. (22) In the midst of his abundance, he will suffer distress; the hand of everyone whom he caused to suffer will be against him.

(23) When he has filled his belly, God will vent his burning anger against him and rain down his blows upon him. (24) Though he may flee from an iron weapon, a bronze-tipped arrow will pierce him. (25) He pulls the arrow out of his back, the gleaming tip out of his liver. Terrors will come upon him; (26) total darkness is reserved for his treasures. An unfanned fire will consume him and will devour whatever is left in his tent. (27) The heavens will expose his guilt; the earth will take its stand against him. (28) A flood will sweep away his house—torrents on the day of God’s wrath. (29) This is the wicked man’s portion from God; indeed, this is the “heritage” appointed for him by God.

21 Then Job replied, (2) Listen carefully to my words; let your attentiveness be the consolation you give me. (3) Bear with me while I speak, and after I have spoken, you may continue to mock. (4) Is my complaint against man? Why should I not be impatient? (5) Look at me and be appalled; clap your hand over your mouth. (6) When I ponder this, I am terrified; trembling seizes my body. (7) Why do the wicked continue to live, growing old and increasing in power? (8) They see their children established around them; their offspring are before their eyes. (9) Their homes are safe and free from fear; the rod of God is not upon them. (10) Their bulls never fail to breed; their cows bear calves and have no miscarriages. (11) They send out their children like a flock; their little ones go around dancing. (12) They sing to the music of the tambourine and harp; they dance to the sound of the flute. (13) They spend their days in prosperity, and in a moment they go down to Sheol. (14) They say to God, “Get away from us! We have no desire to know your ways. (15) Who is the Almighty, that we should serve him? What will we gain by praying to him?” (16) But, the fact is, their prosperity is not in their own hands. I stand far away from the thinking of the wicked!

(17) Yet, how often is the lamp of the wicked snuffed out? How often does calamity overtake them—the fate God allots in his anger? (18) How often do they become like straw before the wind, like chaff swept away by a gale? (19) You reply, “God stores up misery for that man’s children.” But I say, Let God repay the man himself, so that he may experience it! (20) Let his own eyes see his ruin; let him personally drink of the wrath of the Almighty—(21) for what does he care about the family he leaves behind when his allotted months have come to an end? (22) But can anyone teach God knowledge—he who is the one who judges the heavenly beings? (23) One man dies in full vigor, wholly at ease and content, (24) his body well-nourished and his bones rich with marrow. (25) Another man dies with bitterness of soul, never having tasted happiness. (26) They lie down together in the dust, and worms cover both of them.

(27) I know what you are thinking, the schemes by which you plot to wrong me. (28) You say, “Where is the great man’s house? Where among us does the wicked man reside?” (29) Have you never questioned those who are world travelers? Have you dismissed their testimony? (30) They testify that the evil man is spared in the day of calamity, that he is delivered in the day of wrath. (31) Who denounces his conduct to his face? Who repays him for what he has done? (32) He is carried to the cemetery; they take care of his tomb. (33) The clods of the valley are sweet to him. All men will follow after him, just as a countless number went to the grave before him. (34) So how can you console me with your nonsense? The answers you offer continue to be false.

Now proceed to the next section of this study, entitled, Exploring the Passage.