“Summaries, Job 16-19, Psalm 26”Categories: Bulletin Articles
Job 16 begins Job’s next retort to his increasingly snippy friends. He sarcastically notes that if his position were reversed with his friends’ positions, he too could look down at their misfortune. After this, Job returns to his primary theme. His troubles have one source: God. God has attacked him directly and turned him over to his enemies, even though he has done nothing wrong. Ultimately, only God can justify him and prove him right.
Job 17 continues Job’s complaint. He begins by asking his friends, if they won’t believe him, at least to protect him from others who are making false accusations. For this too, Job blames God. It’s God’s fault that he has been afflicted so much that the righteous assume he has done something wrong. Really, though, none of those people understand the truth. Job concludes with a lament that nothing is left for him except to die.
Job 18 contains the next reply of Bildad. Bildad doesn’t appreciate the tone that Job is taking with them, and he outright asks Job if he thinks his friends are stupid. After this, he embarks on a by-now-familiar recitation of all the bad things that happen to wicked people. Because they don’t know God, they are destroyed. Bildad’s implication is that because Job has been brought so low, he must have done something to offend God, whether or not he will admit it.
Job 19 contains Job’s next speech in the exchange. He asks how long his friends are going to falsely accuse him. They don’t know Job’s actions. If Job has indeed sinned, it’s a secret from them. They’re just assuming because of Job’s disgrace.
In this, though, they acknowledge something that is Job’s main theme. God is responsible for his predicament. God doesn’t answer when he cries for justice. God attacks him like a hostile army. God makes all of Job’s friends, relatives, and acquaintances hate him, even when Job pleads for mercy. Job also wants his words to be preserved, so that at last when God appears, He will vindicate him. In this, Job warns, there is danger for everybody who accuses him falsely. God will condemn them.
Psalm 26 defines righteousness and its results. The first three verses are a plea from David to God to vindicate him, a plea that David is not afraid to make because he knows he has been faithful to God. Vs. 4-8 defines David’s righteousness. Rather than associating with the wicked, he spends his time in God’s house worshiping him. Vs. 9-12 contain David’s plea to God to rescue him from the wicked because even though the wicked are not righteous, he is.