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the Week of Proper 6 / Ordinary 11
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Bible Commentaries
Job 23

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New TestamentsSutcliffe's Commentary

Verses 1-17

Job 23:3 . Oh that I knew where I might find him. Job sighs for the favours conferred on certain patriarchs, whom God had met. The living oracle was with Noah after the flood; it was with Abraham in the years of his pilgrimage; it was established with Israel, as described in Exodus 28:30.

Job 23:8 . Behold, I go forward and backward. The Hebrew, as the Chaldaic, represents Job as going east and west, north and south, in search of God. The Jews would allow the oracle no existence except in Jewry.

Job 23:10 . I shall come forth as gold. The allusion is to the art of founders. The gold ores, after washings and pulverizations, are put into the crucible, with salts, and boiled a proper time in the furnace. Then the pure gold is found at the bottom, covered with a beautiful yellow glass. A good man’s graces are also refined in the fire of affliction.

Job 23:12 . The words of his mouth, delivered to Noah, and to others. The holy scriptures are justified by the voice of all antiquity, in their high claims to divine authority.

Job 23:14 . He performeth the thing that is appointed for me. Nam tradit jus meum, “for he deals with me in equity, and the abundance of such things are with himself.” Schultens. This author gives us ten other versions of this text.


Oh illustrious Job, ever rising after a thousand strokes of depression! Having no ear on earth to listen to the mournings of his grief, he sighs for the glorious high throne which has been the sanctuary of holy men from the beginning. Oh there, there he would plead with his living Redeemer. Then he would fill his mouth with arguments, confident that the arm of Omnipotence would become weak, in pleading against a worm. Nay more; he was confident that the Lord would inspire his prayer, and furnish him with arguments which he might urge with sublime effect. Sweet is the fruit of pleading with heaven, instead of wrangling with misguided men.

Job in this conflict felt a vast refinement, and a divine augmentation of every active and passive grace which operated in his heart; that after the fiery furnace, he should come forth refined as gold. He felt a tender heart, hallowed by the flames of love. He justified God in all his privations and afflictions, as having done to him what was wise and good. The tempest had raged without, but warmth and peace dwelt within. He therefore rested in the assurance, that God would soon bring his salvation near, and open his righteousness like the light of the sun.

Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 23". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jsc/job-23.html. 1835.
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