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23:1 Then Job answered and said, 23:2 Even to day is my complaint bitter: my stroke is heavier than my groaning.
23:3 Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat! 23:4 I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments.
23:5 I would know the words which he would answer me, and understand what he would say unto me.
23:6 Will he plead against me with his great power? No; but he would put strength in me.
23:7 There the righteous might dispute with him; so should I be delivered for ever from my judge.
23:8 Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: 23:9 On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: 23:10 But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.
23:11 My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined.
23:12 Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.
23:13 But he is in one mind, and who can turn him? and what his soul desireth, even that he doeth.
23:14 For he performeth the thing that is appointed for me: and many such things are with him.
23:15 Therefore am I troubled at his presence: when I consider, I am afraid of him.
23:16 For God maketh my heart soft, and the Almighty troubleth me: 23:17 Because I was not cut off before the darkness, neither hath he covered the darkness from my face.

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Everything King James Bible:Job
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
back to: Job
Book: Job
Chapter: 23

Job complains that God has withdrawn. (1-7) He asserts his own
integrity. (8-12) The Divine terrors. (13-17)

1-7 Job appeals from his friends to the just judgement of God.
He wants to have his cause tried quickly. Blessed be God, we may
know where to find him. He is in Christ, reconciling the world
unto himself; and upon a Mercy-seat, waiting to be gracious.
Thither the sinner may go; and there the believer may order his
cause before Him, with arguments taken from his promises, his
Covenant, and his Glory. A patient waiting for Death and
Judgment is our Wisdom and duty, and it cannot be without a holy
fear and trembling. A passionate wishing for Death or judgement
is our Sin and folly, and ill becomes us, as it did Job.

8-12 Job knew that the Lord was every where present; but his
mind was in such confusion, that he could get No fixed view of
God's merciful presence, So as to find comfort By spreading his
case before him. His views were all gloomy. God seemed to stand
at a distance, and frown upon him. Yet Job expressed his
Assurance that he should be brought forth, tried, and approved,
for he had obeyed the precepts of God. He had relished and
delighted in the truths and Commandments of God. Here we should
notice that Job justified himself rather than God, or in
opposition to him, ch. 32:2. Job might feel that he was clear
from the charges of his friends, but boldly to assert that,
though visited By the Hand of God, it was not a chastisement of
Sin, was his error. And he is guilty of a second, when he denies
that there are dealings of Providence with men in this present
Life, wherein the injured find redress, and the evil are visited
for their sins.

13-17 As Job does not once question but that his trials are
from the Hand of God, and that there is No such thing as Chance,
how does he account for them? The principle On which he views
them is, that the Hope and reward of the Faithful servants of
God are only laid up in another Life; and he maintains that it
is Plain to all, that the wicked are not treated according to
their deserts in this Life, but often directly the reverse. But
though the obtaining of Mercy, the First-fruits of the Spirit of
Grace, pledges a God, who will certainly finish the work which
he has began; yet the afflicted believer is not to conclude that
all Prayer and entreaty will be in vain, and that he should sink
into despair, and faint when he is reproved of Him. He cannot
tell but the intention of God in afflicting him may be to
produce penitence and Prayer in his Heart. May we learn to obey
and trust the Lord, even in Tribulation; to live or die as he
pleases: we know not for what good ends our lives may be
shortened or prolonged.

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