Home
Search Bible
Click for Help   Click for QuickNav   Click for Advanced Search Options
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow

Search a pre-defined list


OR Select a range of biblical books

From:

To:


OR Custom Selection:

Use semicolons to separate groups:
'Gen;Jdg;Psa-Mal' or 'Rom 3-12;Mat 1:15;Mat 5:12-22'

Your Bible Version is the KJV
Version Selector Up Arrow
KJV King James Version
NKJV New King James Version
NLT New Living Translation
NIV New International Version
ESV English Standard Version
CSB Christian Standard Bible
NASB New American Standard Bible
NET New English Translation
RSV Revised Standard Version
ASV American Standard Version
YLT Young's Literal Translation
DBY Darby Translation
WEB Webster's Bible
HNV Hebrew Names Version
RVR60 Reina-Valera 1960
VUL Latin Vulgate
WLC Westminster Leningrad Codex
LXX Septuagint
Go to Top
Link to This PageCite This Page
Version Selector Up Arrow
Version Selector Up Arrow

Cite this page

MLA format Copy link to clipboard

Note: MLA no longer requires the URL as part of their citation standard. Individual instructors or editors may still require the use of URLs.

APA format Copy link to clipboard
Chicago format Copy link to clipboard
Close
Share this pageFollow the BLB
Version Selector Up Arrow

Share this page using one of these tools:

facebooktwitter

googlepluspinterest

reddittumblrlinkedin


Or email this page to a friend:

Version Selector Up Arrow

Follow the Blue Letter Bible on:

facebooktwitter

pinterestgoogle+


Or subscribe to our Newsletter:

Printable Page
 
 
Left Contextbar EdgeLeft Contextbar Edge BackgroundRight Contextbar Edge2Return to CommentariesReturn to Author BiographyRight Contextbar Edge2Right Contextbar Edge BackgroundRight Contextbar Edge1
Choose a new font size and typeface

Customize your font sizeIncrease your font sizeDecrease your font sizeReturn to default font size

Choose a Bible text color
Read the Bible in blackRead the Bible in dark blueRead the Bible in blue

Customize your text type
Arial font
Trebuchet MS font
Georgia font
Times New Roman font

Customize your Hebrew text type
SBL Hebrew font
Times New Roman font
Arial font

Customize your Greek text type
Gentium font
Times New Roman font
Arial font

Close font preferences
The Blue Letter Bible
BLB Searches
Search the Bible
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow
 [?]

Advanced Options

Search a pre-defined list


OR Select a range of biblical books

From:

To:


OR Custom Selection:

Use semicolons to separate groups: 'Gen;Jdg;Psa-Mal' or 'Rom 3-12;Mat 1:15;Mat 5:12-22'

LexiConc
 [?]
 

Advanced Options

Exact Match
Beginning of the Word
Any Part of the Word
Theological FAQs
 [?]
 
Multi-Verse Retrieval
x
Search KJV
KJVNKJVNLTNIVESVCSBNASB
Version Selector Up Arrow NETRSVASVYLTDBYWEBHNV
RVR60VULWLCLXXmGNTTR  
Version Selector Down Arrow

Line-By-Line Order:
Line-By-Line Verse-Reference  Verse-Reference
Line-By-Line Reference-Verse  Reference-Verse
Line-By-Line Separate Line  Separate Line
Line-By-Line Verse Only  Verse Only
Line-By-Line Reference Only  Reference Only
Reference Delimiters:
No Reference Delimiters  None — Jhn 1:1 KJV
Square Reference Delimiters  Square — [Jhn 1:1 KJV]
Curly Reference Delimiters  Curly — {Jhn 1:1 KJV}
Parenthesis Reference Delimiters  Parens — (Jhn 1:1 KJV)
Paragraph Order:
Paragraph Verse-Reference  Verse-Reference
Paragraph Reference-Verse  Reference-Verse
Paragraph Reference-Only  Reference-Only
Number Delimiters:*
No Verse Numbers  No Number
No Verse Delimeters  No Delimiter — 15
Square Verse Delimiters  Square — [15]
Curly Verse Delimiters  Curly — {15}
Parenthesis Verse Delimiters  Parens — (15)
Other Options:
Abbreviate Books  Abbreviate Books
Quotes Around Verses  Quotes around Verses
Remove Square Brackets  Remove Square Brackets
 
Sort Canonically  Sort Canonically

* 'Number Delimiters' only apply to 'Paragraph Order'

Let's Connect
x

Connect on Facebook Connect on Twitter Connect on Instagram Connect on Pinterest Connect on YouTube

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Daily Devotionals
x

Blue Letter Bible offers several daily devotional readings in order to help you refocus on Christ and the Gospel of His peace and righteousness.

Daily Bible Reading Plans
x

Recognizing the value of consistent reflection upon the Word of God in order to refocus one’s mind and heart upon Christ and His Gospel of peace, we provide several reading plans designed to cover the entire Bible in a year.

One-Year Plans

Two-Year Plan

David Guzik :: Study Guide for Job 12

toggle collapse

Job's Sarcastic Reply

A. Job complains about his friends.

1. (Job 12:1-3) Job sarcastically answers Zophar and his other friends.

Then Job answered and said:
"No doubt you are the people,
And wisdom will die with you!
But I have understanding as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
Indeed, who does not know such things as these?"

a. No doubt you are the people: It is easy to hear the sarcastic and bitter tone of voice in Job. That tone was appropriately taken, because Job's friends really had acted as if they were the people and if they had all wisdom.

b. I have understanding as well as you. . . . Indeed, who does not know such things as these? In rebuke to Zophar and his friends, Job made two points. First, that he also was a man of understanding. Second, that the theological principles presented by Zophar and the others were really widely known.

i. "All your boasted wisdom consists only in strings of proverbs which are in every person's mouth, and are no proof of wisdom and experience in them that use them." (Clarke)

ii. In response, Job will speak plainly about the wisdom and greatness of God. "I would we had another Job, to chastise the high-sounding language of modern theologians. There are starting up in our midst men, who if they are not heretics in doctrine, are aliens in speech." (Spurgeon)

2. (Job 12:4-6) Job's complaint: "My friends mock and misunderstand me."

"I am one mocked by his friends,
Who called on God, and He answered him,
The just and blameless who is ridiculed.
A lamp is despised in the thought of one who is at ease;
It is made ready for those whose feet slip.
The tents of robbers prosper,
And those who provoke God are secure;
In what God provides by His hand."

a. I am one mocked by his friends: Job complained that even though he was a godly man (one who called on God, and He answered), a man who was just and blameless - even so, he was mocked and ridiculed.

i. The way that innocent Job was mocked by others reminds us of what Jesus endured in His sufferings and on the cross, when He was mocked by the soldiers who beat Him (Matthew 27:29), was mocked by the chief priests as He hung on the cross (Matthew 27:41), and was ridiculed by others (Mark 15:27-31).

b. A lamp is despised in the thought of one who is at ease: Job remembers what his life used to be like. He used to call on God and receive an answer, and in those bright days he didn't feel like he needed a lamp, because his life was at ease. Now it is all different and his friends only mock and misunderstand him.

c. Those who provoke God are secure: Now, it seemed to Job that his life and prior understanding was upside-down. Before, everything seemed to make sense ? the righteous seemed to be blessed and the wicked seemed to be afflicted. Now it is all different.

i. Job did not give up on God, but he had to give up on his prior understanding of God. "Job's creed has crumbled into ruins, 'therefore', he says, 'I leave my creed, but I deny that I have left God.'" (Chambers)

B. Job explains his understanding of God's ways.

1. (Job 12:7-12) All creation knows the power of God.

"But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
And the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you;
And the fish of the sea will explain to you.
Who among all these does not know
That the hand of the LORD has done this,
In whose hand is the life of every living thing,
And the breath of all mankind?
Does not the ear test words
And the mouth taste its food?
Wisdom is with aged men,
And with length of days, understanding."

a. Now ask the beasts, and they will teach you: Job here expands on the idea first made in Job 9:3: Indeed, who does not know such things as these? The point is that what his friends say about God is so elementary that even the animals know it.

i. "If you want to know the ways of the Lord, says Job, just look around you. You can theologize all you want, but if your theories do not mesh with the nature of things as they are, then what good are such theories? Even a dog has more knowledge of God than you do!" (Mason)

ii. That the hand of the LORD has done this: "It is always pointed out that verse 9 is the only place in the poetry where the name Yahweh is used for God. For this reason its authenticity has been doubted by many. Its removal in the interests of a theory that this word distinguishes a prose original from poetic additions is a circle of reasoning. Viewed in a different light, the word acquired enormous importance because its rarity makes it so conspicuous." (Andersen)

b. Does not the ear test words: In these few verses Job recites a truisms; statements that are understood as obviously true. The idea is that as clearly as these things are true, so is the power and majesty of God also easily understood as true.

i. "There is no appeal from the verdict of our palate. We know in a moment whether a substance is sweet or bitter, palatable or disagreeable. Now what the taste is to articles of diet, that the ear is to words, whether of God or man." (Meyer)

2. (Job 12:13-25) Job describes the great power of God.

"With Him are wisdom and strength,
He has counsel and understanding.
If He breaks a thing down, it cannot be rebuilt;
If He imprisons a man, there can be no release.
If He withholds the waters, they dry up;
If He sends them out, they overwhelm the earth.
With Him are strength and prudence.
The deceived and the deceiver are His.
He leads counselors away plundered,
And makes fools of the judges.
He loosens the bonds of kings,
And binds their waist with a belt.
He leads princes away plundered,
And overthrows the mighty.
He deprives the trusted ones of speech,
And takes away the discernment of the elders.
He pours contempt on princes,
And disarms the mighty.
He uncovers deep things out of darkness,
And brings the shadow of death to light.
He makes nations great, and destroys them;
He enlarges nations, and guides them.
He takes away the understanding of the chiefs of the people of the earth,
And makes them wander in a pathless wilderness.
They grope in the dark without light,
And He makes them stagger like a drunken man."

a. With Him are wisdom and strength, He has counsel and understanding: In this section, Job rebuked the previous speech of Zophar (Job 11), especially where Zophar criticized Job for not knowing God and likened him to an empty-headed man (Job 11:7-12). Here Job showed that he did indeed know that God was great in wisdom and strength, and that He was mighty in counsel and understanding.

i. Job's message to his friends was clear: "I do know God and how great He is. Don't criticize me on this point any longer."

b. If He breaks a thing down, it cannot be rebuilt: With wonderful poetic beauty and repetition, Job described the power and majesty of God.

- He showed God's power over material things (If He breaks a thing down, it cannot be rebuilt). "He alone can create, and he alone can destroy. Nothing can be annihilated but by the same Power that created it. This is a most remarkable fact. No power, skill, or cunning of man can annihilate the smallest particle of matter. Man, by chemical agency, may change its form; but to reduce it to nothing belongs to God alone." (Clarke)
- He showed God's power over men (If He imprisons a man).
- He showed God's power over minds (The deceived and the deceiver are His).
- He showed God's power over the wise (He leads counselors away plundered, and makes fools of the judges).
- He showed God's power over rulers (He loosens the bonds of kings … He leads princes away plundered).
- He showed God's power over the eloquent (He deprives the trusted ones of speech).
- He showed God's power over the darkness (brings the shadow of death to light).
- He showed God's power over the nations (He makes nations great, and destroys them).

i. "This may be a mockery of the lopsidedness of Eliphaz's creedal hymn in Job 5:18-26, where everything good happens to the righteous. It is hardly a parody on God's wisdom since in the introduction to the poem (Job 12:13) Job ascribed wisdom to God in conjunction with his purpose and understanding." (Smick)

ii. Disarms the mighty is more literally in the Hebrew, loosens the belt of the mighty. "Which is the idiom for depriving of strength, because it disables the wearer for the contest by letting the garments fly loose, and thus hindering the necessary movement for the putting forth of strength." (Bullinger)

c. He takes away the understanding of the chiefs of the people of the earth: Here Job extended his description of the power of God to the idea of God's ability to take away the understanding of even great men. When He does this, they grope in the dark without light.

i. This shows how easy it is for God to make men wander in the pathless wilderness or stagger like a drunken man. All He must do is merely take away understanding, showing that the wisdom and understanding of man is dependent upon God.

ii. We sense that Job actually described himself, as this prominent man without understanding, a man wanderingin a pathless wilderness, a man groping in the dark without light, and who staggered like a drunken man.

© 2007 David Guzik - No distribution beyond personal use without permission

CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.

Search

Bible Search

Multiverse Retrieval

LexiConc Search

FAQ Search

Browse Dictionary Topics

Bible Reference

Encyclopedias / Dictionaries

Introductions to the Bible

Topical Indexes

Charts and Outlines

Timelines

Maps / Images

Bible Commentaries

Text Commentaries

Audio & Video Commentaries

Theological Resources

Articles / Books

Women's Resources

Don Stewart

BLB Theological

Creeds, Catechisms, and Confessions

Multimedia

Video

Music

Products

Digital Books

Mobile Apps for iPhone / iPad

Mobile blb.org

BLB Offline CDs

Free Web Tools

Devotionals

Email Devotional Sign-Up

BLB Daily Promises

Day by Day by Grace

Morning and Evening

Daily Bible Reading Plan

Help

Video Tutorials

Support

Theological Questions

Website Support

iApp Support

General Questions

Ministries

Sowing Circle

Co-Laboring Ministries

About

About the BLB

Statement of Faith

History

Newsletter

Partnerships

Ministry FAQs

Donate

Donation Information

Contact the BLB

Hotjar - Unlimited insights from your web and mobile sites


BLB Institute

BLB Blog

Email Newsletters

Facebook

Twitter


Blue Letter Bible study tools make reading, searching and studying the Bible easy and rewarding.

Blue Letter Bible is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization

©2017 Blue Letter Bible

Loading...

Interlinear
Bibles
Cross-Refs
Commentaries
Dictionaries
Miscellaneous
Verse Tools Arrow
Login

Email / username or password was incorrect!

Check your email for password retrieval

Enter Your
Email or Username

Password

 [?]

 

Did you forget your password?


Register a new BLB account

Why won't my login from the old site work?

Complete the form below to register  [?]

Error: That Email is already registered

Error: Please provide a valid Email

Error: Passwords should have at least 6 characters

Error: Passwords do not match

Error: Please provide a valid first name

Error: That username is already taken

Error: Usernames should only contain letters, numbers, dots, dashes, or underscores

Enter Your EmailUsername

First Name

PasswordRe-enter

[ Cancel ]

 

Passwords should have at least 6 characters.
Usernames should only contain letters, numbers, dots, dashes, or underscores.

Thank you for registering. A verification email has been sent to the address you provided.

Error: That Email / Username is not registered

Enter Your Email or Username

 

Return to Login

Close Login