"Far Be It From Me That I Should Say You Are Right" (Job 27-28) March 29-31
Job continues with his response, now addressing not just Bildad but all three of his friends (as the "you" in verse 5 is plural).
In verses 2-6, though Job accuses God of denying him justice and dealing him a bitter experience, he takes an oath in God's name to be completely honest and hold fast to his integrity and innocence. In whatever he himself says, he will not stoop to the level of his friends in their dishonest approach.
In verse 7, Job asks that anyone who would be his enemy (the Hebrew here means "hater") would be reckoned among the wicked. And there is no way Job is going to act like such a person because, despite Job's previous statements that things often seem to go well for the wicked, Job knows that there is no guarantee that this will be so—and if things do take a downturn, the wicked cannot expect God to help them (verses 8-10). This shows that Job considered that he himself had a reasonable expectation that God would hear him.
Job's point here and in the remainder of the chapter is to warn his friends that by treating him as they have been, they are actually joining the ranks of the wicked and can expect the punishment of the wicked—the very thing they have been warning him about. The Expositor's Bible Commentary notes on verses 11-12: "Job was saying, 'Must I teach you about God's power to punish? Indeed, I could never conceal from you a subject on which you have expounded at length.'" Yet he proceeds, in verses 13-23, to remind them of just what lies in store for the wicked—using their own approach against them.
"Where Can Wisdom Be Found?" (Job 27-28)
In the next chapter, Job makes the point that while man is special, distinct from animals, in being able to employ technology to explore the hidden depths of the earth and mining its ores and gems, he can't find wisdom this way. True wisdom cannot be found through natural exploration (28:1-14). Nor can it be bought (verses 15-19). True wisdom, Job explains, comes only from God (verses 20-23).
God is the only one who knows everything that can be known (compare verse 24). Once again, Job displays some remarkable scientific knowledge—understanding that itself seems to have come from God. Note verses 24-26: "For he looks to the ends of the earth, and sees under the whole heavens, to establish a weight for the wind, and apportion the waters by measure. When he made a law for the rain, and a path for the thunderbolt." The Signature of God by author Grant Jeffrey states: "In this intriguing statement the Bible reveals that the winds are governed by their weight, a fact that scientists have only determined in the last century. How could Job have known that the air and the wind patterns are governed by their actual weight? Meteorologists have found that the relative weights of the wind and water greatly determine the weather patterns. The passage also reveals a profound appreciation of the fact that there is a scientific connection between lightning, thunder and the triggering of rainfall. Apparently, a slight change in the electrical charge within a cloud is one of the key factors that causes microscopic water droplets in the clouds to join with other droplets until they are heavy enough to fall to earth. In addition, we now know that a powerful electric charge as high as 300 million volts in a cloud sends a leader stroke down through the air to the ground. Instantaneously, only one-fiftieth of a second later, a second more powerful return stroke travels back up to the cloud following the path through the air opened by the leader stroke. The thunder occurs because the air within this channel or path has been vaporized by superheating it to fifty thousand degrees by the lightning. The superheated air expands outward at supersonic speed creating the noise of thunder. Job's description, 'He made a law for the rain and a path for the thunderbolt' (Job 28:26) is startling in its accuracy. No human could have known this in ancient times without the divine revelation of God" (pp. 118-119).
Verse 27 notes that God established His wisdom from creation. And the only way for a person to really come to understand it, as the next verse explains, is to have a proper fear of God and depart from evil (compare Proverbs 1:7; 9:10). It is interesting to consider how God described Job at the beginning of the book: "a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil" (Job 1:8). And through Job's relationship with God, he will ultimately gain the understanding he seeks.