Job 16

Job’s Reply to Eliphaz   (16:1 – 17:16)

Job told his friends that they were the ones who were full of hot air and worthless advice. They had offered him no encouragement or solace. They had not helped to ease his pain. They were, in fact, “sorry comforters” (16:2).

Job graphically described his situation. He said his awful appearance testified that he was the object of God’s wrath (16:6-8). He likened himself to an animal hunted down and torn apart by God (16:9). He felt as though God had handed him over to a band of ruffians (16:10-11) and as though he was God’s target (16:12-14). As a result, Job was clothed in sackcloth and fallen to the ground (16:16), like a fallen bull whose horn is buried in the ground. And yet, Job insisted, he had done nothing to invite such calamity to visit him (16:17).

Job refused to be overcome by despair. He asked that somehow his cry might be heard and that he might have the opportunity to obtain a hearing before God before his death. Job tenaciously held on to the conviction that he was innocent. He asked that, if he died without being vindicated, his blood might cry out and declare his innocence.

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