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Misery Everywhere Yet without Judgment

Written by The Colson Center - Worldview Bible on . Posted in The Colson Center - Worldview Bible

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Misery Everywhere, Yet without Judgment

Misery Everywhere, Yet without Judgment

Job 24:9-12
“(There are those who snatch the fatherless child from the breast,
and they take a pledge against the poor.)
10
They go about naked, without clothing;
hungry, they carry the sheaves;
11
among the olive rows of the wicked they make oil;
they tread the winepresses, but suffer thirst.
12
From out of the city the dying groan,
and the soul of the wounded cries for help;
yet God charges no one with wrong.”

The Story: Two aspects of the ESV’s translation here are not quite correct, it seems to me. First, I’m not sure why verse 9 is put in parentheses, as though it were a sidebar or only peripherally related to Job’s argument. It appears to be in line with the rest of his comments and so should not be minimalized in this way. Second, in verse 10, the ESV misses the causative sense of the verb. The text should read, following NASB, “They cause the poor to go about naked…”, “the poor” here being understood from the previous section. So here we’re still talking about people who do wickedness to others, creating misery everywhere you look. They get better prices on the oil they buy (the sense of v. 11), and they can never get their fill of wine. Meanwhile, in the city, groaning, wounded people cry out for help, and no one seems to care. Still, Job points out, God charges no one with wrong.

The Structure: We might wonder how it is that Job is so sensitive to all this oppression foisted on the poor. It’s because he has always cared for them, as he pointed out early in his defense. Job, we remember, was the greatest man in the East. He knew about suffering, not because he helped to perpetuate it, but because he sought to alleviate it. And his friends knew this.

Job knew the suffering of his neighbors at first hand. How might your church become more sensitive to the needs of people in your community?

Job

For a deeper look at the book of Job, order Carol A. Newsom’s The Book of Job: A Contest of Moral Imaginations from our online store.

The Worldview Bible examines the teaching of Scripture according to the Story and Structure of Truth – the Framework of Christian Worldview – using only other Scriptures for illumination. Information about The Framework of Truth is available on this site. Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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