Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 40:8

"Will you really annul My judgment? Will you condemn Me that you may be justified?
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - God;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Leviathan;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Justification;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Justice;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Condemn;   Job, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Admonition;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Annul;   Condemn;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

Wilt thou condemn me - Rather than submit to be thought in the wrong, wilt thou condemn My conduct, in order to justify thyself? Some men will never acknowledge themselves in the wrong. "God may err, but we cannot," seems to be their impious maxim. Unwillingness to acknowledge a fault frequently leads men, directly or indirectly, to this sort of blasphemy. There are three words most difficult to be pronounced in all languages, - I Am Wrong.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-40.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Wilt thou disannul my judgment? - Wilt thou “reverse” the judgment which I have formed, and show that it should have been different from what it is? This was implied in what Job had undertaken. He had complained of the dealings of God, and this was the same as saying that he could show that those dealings should have been different from what they were. When a man complains against God, it is always implied that he supposes he could show why his dealings should be different from what they are, and that they should be reversed.

Wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous? - Or, rather, probably, “Wilt thou show that I am wrong because thou art superior in justice?” Job had allowed himself to use language which strongly implied that God was improperly severe. He had regarded himself as punished far beyond what he deserved, and as suffering in a manner which justice did not demand. All this implied that “he” was more righteous in the case than God, for when a man allows himself to vent such complaints, it indicates that he esteems himself to be more just than his Maker. God now calls upon Job to maintain this proposition, since he had advanced it, and to urge the arguments which would prove that “he” was more righteous in the case than God. It was proper to demand this. It was a charge of such a nature that it could not be passed over in silence, and God asks, therefore, with emphasis, whether Job now supposed that he could institute such an argument as to show that he was right and his Maker wrong.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-40.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Job 40:8

Wilt thou also disannul My judgment?
Wilt thou condemn Me, that thou mayest be righteous?

The excuses of sinners condemn God

I. Every excuse for sin condemns God.

1. Nothing can be sin for which there is a justifiable excuse.

2. If God condemns that for which there is a good excuse, He must be wrong.

3. But God does condemn all sin.

4. Consequently, every excuse for sin charges blame upon God, and virtually accuses Him of tyranny. Whoever pleads an excuse for sin, therefore, charges God with blame.

II. Consider some of these excuses.

1. Inability. It is affirmed that men cannot do what God requires of them. This charge is blasphemous against God. Shall God require natural impossibilities, and denounce eternal death upon men for not doing what they have no natural power to do? Never.

2. Want of time. If God really requires of you what you have not time to do, He is infinitely to blame.

3. A sinful nature.

4. Sinners, in self-excuse, say they are willing to be Christians. But this is insincere, if they persist in remaining in their sins.

5. Sinners say they are waiting God’s time.

6. They plead that their circumstances are very peculiar.

7. Or that their temperament is peculiar.

8. Or that their health is so poor they cannot get to meeting, and so cannot be religions.

9. Another excuse takes this form--My heart is so hard, that I cannot feel. Learn--

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Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Job 40:8". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/job-40.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Wilt thou also disannul my judgment?.... The decrees and purposes of God concerning his dealings with men, particularly the afflictions of them, which are framed with the highest wisdom and reason, and according to the strictest justice, and can never be frustrated or made void; or the sentence of God concerning them, that is gone out of his mouth and cannot be altered; or the execution of it, which cannot be hindered: it respects the wisdom of God in the government of the world, as Aben Ezra observes, and the particular dealings of his providence with men, which ought to be submitted to; to do otherwise is for a man to set up his own judgment against the Lord's, which is as much as in him lies to disannul it; whereas God is a God of judgment, and his judgment is according to truth, and in righteousness, and will take place, let men do or say what they please;

wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous? Is there no other way of vindicating thine own innocence and integrity, without charging me with unrighteousness; at least saying such things as are judged by others to be an arraignment of my justice, wisdom, and goodness, in the government of the world? Now though Job did not expressly and directly condemn the Lord, and arraign his justice, yet when he talked of his own righteousness and integrity, he was not upon his guard as he should have been with respect to the justice of God in his afflictions; for though a man may justify his own character when abused, he should take care to speak well of God; and be it as it will between man and man, God is not to be brought into the question; and though some of his providences are not so easily reconciled to his promises, yet let God be true and every man a liar.

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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 40:8". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-40.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Wilt thou also disannul a my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?

(a) Signifying that they who justify themselves condemn God as unjust.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/job-40.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Wilt thou not only contend with, but set aside My judgment or justice in the government of the world?

condemn — declare Me unrighteous, in order that thou mayest be accounted righteous (innocent; undeservingly afflicted).

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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 40:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-40.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?

Wilt thou — Every word is emphatical, wilt (art thou resolved upon it) thou (thou Job, whom I took to be one of a better mind) also (not only vindicate thyself, but also accuse me) disannul (not only question, but even repeal and make void, as if it were unjust) my judgment? My sentence against thee, and my government and administration of human affairs? Wilt thou make me unrighteous that thou mayst seem to be righteous?

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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 40:8". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/job-40.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 40:8 Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?

Ver. 8. Wilt thou also disannul my judgment?] Dost thou think to ruin my justice to establish thine own innocence? and wilt thou needs be a superior judge over me? Wilt thou not revoke thy former expostulations and complaints against me, and with open mouth give me my due glory? Here God showeth his dissatisfaction with Job’s former confession.

Wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?] Job had bolted out some words that either tended to this purpose, or seemed so to do, to the just grief and offence of his friends. For this, therefore, he must be better humbled, and henceforth learn to abstain not only from things simply evil, but seemingly so; quicquid fuerit male coloratum (as Bernard hath it), whatsoever looks but ill favouredly.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 40:8". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-40.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

Job 40:8

I. Every excuse for sin condemns God. This will be apparent if we consider (1) that nothing can be sin for which there is a justifiable excuse. (2) If God condemns that for which there is a good excuse, He must be wrong. (3) But God does condemn all sin. Hence either there is no apology for it, or God is wrong. (4) Consequently every excuse for sin charges blame upon God, and virtually accuses Him of tyranny.

II. Consider some of these excuses in detail: (1) Inability. (2) Want of time. (3) A sinful nature. (4) Sinners plead that they are willing to be Christians. (5) Sinners say they are waiting God's time. (6) Sinners plead that their circumstances are very peculiar. (7) Another excuse is in this form: "My heart is so hard that I cannot feel." (8) "My heart is so deceitful," etc.

III. All excuses for sin add insult to injury. (1) A plea that reflects injuriously upon the court or the lawgiver is an aggravation of the original crime. (2) The same is true of any plea made in self-justification. (3) It is truly abominable for the sinner to abuse God and then excuse himself for it. This is the old way of the guilty.

IV. (1) Excuses render repentance impossible. (2) Sinners should lay all their excuses at once before God. (3) Sinners ought to be ashamed of their excuses and repent of them.

C. G. Finney Sermons on Gospel Themes, p. 72.


References: Job 40:23.—Preacher's Monthly, vol. iv., p. 120. Job 42:5.—Homiletic Quarterly, vol. v., p. 18; J. M. Neale, Sermons in Sackville College, vol. iii., p. 434.



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Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Sermon Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/job-40.html.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Every word is emphatical,

Wilt (art thou resolved upon it)

thou (thou, Job, whom I took to be one of a better mind and temper; had it been a stranger or my enemy who had spoken thus of me, I could have borne it, but I cannot bear it from thee)

also (not only vindicate thyself, and thy own integrity, but also accuse me)

disannul (not only question and dispute, but even condemn, repeal, and make void, as if it were ungrounded and unjust)

my judgment, i.e. my sentence against thee, and my government and administration of human affairs? Wilt thou make me unrighteous, that thou mayst seem to be righteous?

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 40:8". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-40.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

8.Wilt thou also disannul my judgment — The word , judgment, means also right; “the right I exercise in the government of the world, is equivalent to my righteousness in the same.” — Hirtzel. As used by Elihu, and the Almighty also, the term involves both moral and physical power, for the ideas of might and right have been closely blended in the Elihuistic section, and thus far in the Jehovistic section. Elihu, it will be remembered begins his third discourse (Job 35:2) with the significant question, “Thinkest thou this to be right, , [third word of first clause,] that thou saidst,” etc., and now the third address of the Almighty opens with the question, “Wilt thou altogether annul my right?” in which this word appears in the same order as in Elihu. Wilt thou “reduce to nothing my right?” “altogether destroy it?” , from parar, “to break in pieces,” “crush;” a word which corresponds to καταργεω, to “make void,” (Romans 3:31,) to “destroy,” to “do away,” — a word used twenty-five times in Paul’s epistles. The word mishpat, “judgment,” “right,” appearing frequently in Job, (for varied meanings, see Job 8:3; Job 9:32; Job 13:18; Job 23:4; Job 27:2, etc.,) furnishes a key, we think, to the mystery of the monsters soon to be exposed to our view, viz: — instead of questioning my right (moral power) in the moral world, as implied in the challenge, try your right (mental or physical power) in the natural world. To both appeals Job has no reply to make; see further on Job 40:15.

That thou mayest be righteous — Self justification under the chastening of the Almighty arraigns the judgment and justice of God. It calls in question the righteousness of the divine ways, and thereby virtually condemns God. It assumes to know more than Jehovah, and justifies the challenge he now makes to Job. If Job be wiser than Deity, he must possess all the attributes of God — for instance, he must be almighty, he must have “an arm like God.”

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-40.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 40:8. Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? — Wilt thou take exceptions to what I say and do, and not only call in question and dispute, but even censure, condemn, and endeavour to make void, my judgment? — My sentence against thee, and my government and administration of human affairs. God’s judgment cannot, must not, be disannulled, for we are sure it is according to truth, and therefore it is a great piece of impudence and iniquity in us to call it in question. Wilt thou condemn me, &c.? — Must my honour suffer for the support of thy reputation? Must I be charged as dealing unjustly with thee, because thou canst not otherwise clear thyself from the censures that thou liest under? Must I be represented as unrighteous, and be condemned, that thou mayest seem to be righteous, and be justified? Our duty is to condemn ourselves, that God may be righteous. David was, therefore, ready to own the evil he had done in God’s sight, that God might be justified when he spake, and clear when he was judged, Psalms 51:4 : see Nehemiah 9:33; Daniel 9:7. But those are very proud, and very ignorant, both of God and themselves, who, to clear themselves, will condemn God. And the day is coming when, if the mistake be not rectified in time by repentance, the eternal judgment will be both the confutation of the plea, and the confusion of the prisoner; for the heavens shall declare God’s righteousness, and all the world shall become guilty before him.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 40:8". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-40.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Pit, or grave. Cause the earth to swallow them up, and I will confess thy power. (Calmet)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-40.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

"Will you really annul My judgment?" Because of what he felt was an unfair affliction, Job had accused God of injustice. "Will you condemn Me that you may be justified?" "Job had let his defense of his integrity lead him astray, to the extreme of blaming God" (Zuck p. 176). For all practical purposes, this is what many professed religious people are doing today. In order to justify such things as women preachers and homosexual members, they are forced to accuse the biblical writers and by extension, God Himself of being ignorant. The real question that every person must answer is, "Are you right?" or "Is God right?"

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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/job-40.html. 1999-2014.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?

Wilt thou not only contend with, but set aside my judgment, or justice in the government of the world.

Condemn - declare me unrighteous, in order that thou mayest be accounted righteous (innocent); undeservingly afflicted.

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Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-40.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(8) Wilt thou also disannul my judgment?—Comp. what Job said in Job 19:6-7; Job 27:2. God is about to show Job his inability to govern the world and administer judgment among men, so as to rule them morally, from his acknowledged inability to govern the more formidable animals of the brute creation. If he cannot restrain them, how is it likely that he will be able to tread down the wicked in their place? And if he cannot hold the wicked in check and compel them to submission, how, any more, can he protect himself from their violence? how can he save himself from the outbursts of their fury? or, if not save himself from them, how much less can he deliver himself from the hand of God? If he cannot hide them in the dust together, and bind them (i.e., restrain the threatenings of their rage in the hidden world) in the secret prison-house, how much less can he save himself, and be independent of the help of a saviour?

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/job-40.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?
Wilt
Psalms 51:4; Romans 3:4
disannul
Isaiah 14:27; 28:18; Galatians 3:15,17; Hebrews 7:18
wilt thou condemn
10:3; 27:2-6; 32:2; 34:5,6; 35:2,3
Reciprocal: 1 Samuel 15:20 - Yea;  Job 4:17 - Shall mortal;  Job 6:26 - reprove;  Job 8:3 - God;  Job 11:5 - GeneralJob 13:15 - but I will;  Job 13:18 - I know;  Job 15:6 - thine own;  Job 18:4 - shall the;  Job 19:7 - no judgment;  Job 33:12 - God;  Job 34:13 - Who hath given;  Job 34:17 - wilt;  Job 36:23 - Thou;  Psalm 39:10 - blow;  Ecclesiastes 3:18 - that God;  Isaiah 41:1 - let us;  Isaiah 43:26 - declare;  Isaiah 45:9 - unto him;  Jeremiah 36:29 - Thou hast;  Ezekiel 18:25 - way;  Ezekiel 26:14 - for I;  Ezekiel 33:17 - GeneralMalachi 3:13 - What;  Matthew 20:13 - I do;  John 12:10 - GeneralActs 11:17 - what;  Romans 9:20 - who art

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 40:8". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-40.html.