Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 22:3

"Is there any pleasure to the Almighty if you are righteous, Or profit if you make your ways perfect?
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Grace of God;   Man;   Self-Righteousness;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Eliphaz;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Greatness of God;   Hypocrisy;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Job, the Book of;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Gain;   Pleasure;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty - Infinite in his perfections, he can neither gain nor lose by the wickedness or righteousness of men.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-22.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty that thou art righteous? - This is the same sentiment which was advanced in the previous verse. The meaning is, that it can be no advantage to God that a man is righteous. He is not dependent on man for happiness, and cannot be deterred from dealing justly with him because he is in danger of losing anything. In this sense, it is true. God “has” pleasure in holiness wherever it is, and is pleased when people are righteous; but it is not true that he is dependent on the character of his creatures for his own happiness, or that people can lay him under obligation by their own righteousness. Eliphaz applies this general truth to Job, probably, because he understood him as complaining of the dealings of God with him, as if he had laid God under obligation by his upright life. He supposes that it was implied in the remarks of Job, that he had been so upright, and had been of so much consequence, that God “ought” to have continued him in a state of prosperity. This supposition, if Job ever had it, Eliphaz correctly meets, and shows him that he was not so profitable to God that he could not do without him. Yet, do people not often feel thus? Do ministers of the gospel not sometimes feel thus? Do we not sometimes feel thus in relation to some man eminent for piety, wisdom, or learning? Do we not feel as if God could not do without him, and that there was a sort of necessity that he should keep him alive? Yet, how often are such people cut down, in the very midst of their usefulness, to show

(1) that God is not dependent on them; and

(2) to keep them from pride, as if they were necessary to the execution of the divine plans; and

(3) to teach his people their dependence on “Him,” and not on frail, erring mortals. When the church places its reliance on a human arm, God very often suddenly knocks the prop away.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-22.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Job 22:3

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty that thou art righteous?

God’s pleasure in man’s righteousness

To this Eliphaz we cannot take kindly. There is so much in him that reminds us of the Pharisee of our Lord’s day. With all his conscientiousness--and it is remarkable what sins against God and our brother are committed under the garb of conscientiousness--he seems to be one of those who “speak wickedly for God.” Looking at the argument of the Temanite in this chapter, it is, at best, a piece of sophistry. The words of the text seem humble words, so calculated to move us in the direction of self-repression; but we are not required to build humility upon a lie.

1. This verse is but an expansion of the thought contained in the previous verse, which reads thus, “Can a man be profitable unto God, as he that is wise may be profitable unto himself?” The force of this comparison tends to disarm criticism, for the least taught among Christian people can never think they are doing God the service they are rendering themselves. In those cases in which men think they are in some way doing God a splendid service, their presumption is its own condemnation. But such a thought does not enter Christian believing minds. What are they to say to the challenge of the next verse? Is there not something true within us that rises up against its merciless and terrible conclusion? A man may be far from as profitable to God as unto himself. He must feel that all the weight of obligation is on his side, since God alone is the source of all his goodness and power; and yet he may, I think he must, if he have a spark of the Divine life and light in him, resist so fearful and disheartening a conclusion as that God has no pleasure in his rectitude, and that he is all loss and no gain to God.

2. Consider what of truth we can find in these words.

3. We need to feel that all the weight of obligations is on our side. When we think of the Divine pleasure and gain, we cannot but think how beneficent that pleasure is. We cannot serve God without a recompense. Yet there are many who shrink from God, as though He were the receiver, instead of the Giver, of all good. They start back from duty as though it would be fatal to their joy. Nothing He commands but for your good. Nothing He orders but for your eternal delight. (G. J. Proctor.)

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Job 22:3". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/job-22.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty that thou art righteous?.... It is not; the Lord indeed takes pleasure in his people, not as sinners, but as righteous; and as they are considered such in Christ, he is well pleased for his righteousness' sake, and with it, being agreeable to his nature, will, and law; and with his people in Christ, in whom they are accepted, having imputed the righteousness of his Son unto them, and so they stand before him unblamable and irreprovable, and he takes pleasure in the work of his own hands upon them, called the good pleasure of his will, in the new man formed after his image in righteousness and true holiness, in the graces of his Spirit, and in the exercise of them, faith, hope, love, humility, fear of God, &c. it is a pleasure to him to hear their prayers and praises, and to observe their ready and cheerful obedience to his will; but then all this gives him no new pleasure, or adds anything to the complacency of his mind; he would have had as much delight and pleasure within himself, if there had never been an holy angel in heaven, or a righteous man on earth; he has no such pleasure in either as to be made more happy thereby, or so as to receive any "gain" or profit from it, as the next clause explains it. Some render it, "that thou justifiest thyself"F11כי תצדק "quod justifices te", Junius & Tremellius. , or "that thou art just", or "seemest to be righteous to thyself"F12"Quum Justus es apud teipsum", Schmidt; "quod tibi justus esse videris", Michaelis. ; a self-righteous person is not pleasing to God; it is no pleasure to him when a man seeks for justification by his own works, or reckons them his righteousness; the publican that confessed his sin was rather justified with God than the Pharisee that applauded his own righteousness; such that are conceited of their own righteousness, and despise others, are an offence to God, a "smoke in his nose", Isaiah 65:5; for the righteousness of such is not real righteousness in the account of God, and according to his law; it has only the shadow and appearance of one, but is not truly so; and besides, to seek righteousness this way is going contrary to the revealed will of God, to the Gospel scheme of justification by faith in Christ's righteousness, without the works of the law, and is a setting aside his righteousness, and frustrating and making null and void the death of Christ, and therefore can never be pleasing in the sight of God:

or is it gain to him that thou makest thy ways perfect? no man's ways are perfect before God, even the best of men have detects in their works, and failings in their walk and conversations: some men's ways are indeed clean in their own eyes, and perfect in their own conceit; and if Eliphaz thought Job such an one, he was mistaken, see Job 9:20; there are others, who are in a sense unblamable in their walk and conversation; that is, are not guilty of any notorious crime, but exercise a conscience void of offence towards God and man, walk in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless; and yet this is no "gain" to God; for what does such a man give to him? or what does he receive of his hands? see Job 35:7. This was indeed Job's case and character.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-22.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

pleasure — accession of happiness; God has pleasure in man‘s righteousness (Psalm 45:7), but He is not dependent on man‘s character for His happiness.

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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-22.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect?

Is it — Such a pleasure as he needs for his own ease and contentment. Nay, God needs not us, or our services. We are undone, forever undone without him: but he is happy, forever happy without us.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/job-22.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 22:3 [Is it] any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or [is it] gain [to him], that thou makest thy ways perfect?

Ver. 3. Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous?] Num volupe est Omnipotenti? &c. Is anything added to his joy? Or needeth he thy manners and virtues to the making up of his perfection? Nothing less, surely. True it is, that he soliciteth suitors, John 4:23, and is well pleased with our performances, Psalms 51:6. But it is for our sakes, and to our benefit, and not his own. Like as the sun, when he casteth abroad his beams in the world, seemeth to receive light from some other creatures, whereas in truth they all receive light from him, and not he from them; so it is here: and as the same sun draws up vapours from the earth, not for itself, but to render them again to the earth, to moisten and fatten it; so God, the true Sun of our souls, draweth from us our sighs and services, not for his own profit, but to rain them down again upon us in so many blessings.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 22:3". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-22.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Job 22:3. Is it any pleasure? &c.— Is it any advantage. Heath.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Job 22:3". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/job-22.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Any pleasure, i.e. such a pleasure as he needs for his own ease and contentment, without which he could not be happy, as appears by the foregoing and following words; for otherwise God is oft said to delight in the good actions of his people, to wit, so far as to approve and accept them.

That thou makest thy ways perfect; that thy life is free from blemish, as thou pretendest, but falsely, as I shall show.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 22:3". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-22.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

3.Pleasure to the Almighty , same word as in Job 21:21, which see. It is the necessity of every moral being to delight in those moral qualities that are like its own. A righteous God must take pleasure in that which is righteous. Perhaps there is no object so pleasing to the divine mind as holiness, matured through suffering and trial.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-22.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 22:3. Is it any pleasure to the Almighty that thou art righteous? — That is, any such pleasure as he needs in order to his happiness? Heath renders it, any advantage. God, we know, approves of and accepts the good actions of his people, and is often said in Scripture to delight in them; but certainly cannot be advantaged by them. He needs not us or our services. We are undone, for ever undone, without him: but he is happy, for ever happy, without us.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 22:3". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-22.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Profit. God rules all with justice or with mercy: since, therefore, he punishes, it must be for some guilt, and not for his own advantage. But he might still chastise for the good of man, or to manifest his own power, John ix. 3. God also punishes the sinner for the wrong which he does to himself. (St. Augustine, Confessions iii. 8.) Any one may discover the sophism of Eliphaz. If God were indifferent with regard to our virtue, who would be able to advance one step towards him? (Calmet) --- Man is unprofitable indeed to God, but he may reap great advantage from piety himself; and this is what God desires, as well as his own glory, Matthew v. 17. (Worthington)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-22.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

He argues that the strongest of men are not useful to God and certainly a professional wise man cannot give an instruction to the Almighty. He claims that Job"s uprightness could not please or benefit God. "It was only because Job had sinned that God"s alarm system went off, causing Him to penalize Job" (Zuck p. 103). Once again we have a mixture of truth and error in what these friends believed. On one hand, God does not need man for life or existence (Acts 17:24ff), yet God does take pleasure in righteous people (Matthew 22:23; Job 1:8 "Have you considered My servant Job?"). In addition, God even uses such people to bring about His purposes (Isaiah 6:8).

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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/job-22.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Is it. ? Figure of speech Erotesis. App-6.

THE ALMIGHTY. Hebrew Shaddai. App-4.

infinite = without end.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/job-22.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect?

Pleasure - accession of happiness: God has pleasure in man's righteousness (Psalms 45:7), but He is not dependent on man's character for His happiness.

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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-22.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that thou art righteous? or is it gain to him, that thou makest thy ways perfect?
any pleasure
1 Chronicles 29:17; Psalms 147:10,11; Proverbs 11:1,20; 12:22; 15:8; Malachi 2:17; Philippians 4:18
thou makest
23:10-12; Psalms 39:1; 119:3-6,59; Acts 24:16; 2 Corinthians 7:1
Reciprocal: 2 Samuel 22:33 - perfect;  Job 35:7 - GeneralJob 41:11 - Who;  Psalm 16:2 - my goodness;  Proverbs 9:12 - GeneralLuke 17:10 - General

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 22:3". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-22.html.