New European Version: Old Testament

Deeper commentary on this chapter

Audio talks on this chapter:


Video presentations on this chapter:


Other material relevant to this chapter:


Hear this chapter read:



About | PDFs | Mobile formats | Word formats | Other languages | Contact Us | What is the Gospel? | Support the work | Carelinks Ministries | | The Real Christ | The Real Devil | "Bible Companion" Daily Bible reading plan

CHAPTER 22 Dec. 18 
Eliphaz’s Third Speech
Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered, 2Can a man be profitable to God? Surely he who is wise is profitable to himself. 3Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that you are righteous? Or does it benefit Him, that you make your ways perfect? 4Is it for your piety that He reproves you, that He enters with you into judgment? 5Isn’t your wickedness great? Neither is there any end to your iniquities. 6For you have taken pledges from your brother for nothing, and stripped the naked of their clothing. 7You haven’t given water to the weary to drink, and you have withheld bread from the hungry. 8But as for the mighty man, he had the earth from you. The honourable man, he lived in it. 9You have sent widows away empty, and the arms of the fatherless you have broken. 10Therefore snares are around you. Sudden fear troubles you, 11or darkness, so that you can not see, and floods of waters cover you. 12Isn’t God in the heights of heaven? See the height of the stars, how high they are! 13You say, ‘What does God know? Can He judge through the thick darkness? 14Thick clouds are a covering to Him, so that He doesn’t see. He walks on the vault of the sky’. 15Will you keep the old way, which wicked men have trodden, 16who were snatched away before their time, whose foundation was poured out as a stream, 17who said to God, ‘Depart from us’; and, ‘What can the Almighty do for us?’. 18Yet He filled their houses with good things, but the counsel of the wicked is far from me. 19The righteous see it, and are glad. The innocent ridicule them, 20saying, ‘Surely those who rose up against us are cut off. The fire has consumed their remnant’.  21Acquaint yourself with Him, now, and be at peace. Thereby good shall come to you. 22Please receive instruction from His mouth, and lay up His words in your heart. 23If you return to the Almighty, you shall be built up, if you put away unrighteousness far from your tents. 24Lay your treasure in the dust, the gold of Ophir among the stones of the brooks. 25The Almighty will be your treasure, and precious silver to you. 26For then you will delight yourself in the Almighty, and shall lift up your face to God. 27You shall make your prayer to Him, and He will hear you. You shall pay your vows. 28You shall also decree a thing, and it shall be established to you. Light shall shine on your ways. 29When they cast down, you shall say, ‘Be lifted up’. He will save the humble person. 30He will even deliver him who is not innocent. Yes, he shall be delivered through the cleanness of your hands.


22:3 Is it any pleasure to the Almighty, that you are righteous?- See on 21:7.
22:6 You have taken pledges from your brother for nothing, and stripped the naked- This was absolutely not the case. But Eliphaz was so convinced that suffering comes as a result of sin that he concluded Job must have sinned and therefore imagined these things until he became convinced Job had done them. People who start imagining false things about others because of gut feelings about them end up genuinely believing those things are true. It all arises from an inability to accept we may be wrong in our worldview and therefore in our judgment of others.
22:13 You say, ‘What does God know?’- The fact God sees and knows all things leads us to right behaviour. Eliphaz here is reasoning that because Job refused to accept that sin and suffering were related in his case, therefore this implied something about Job’s view of God. We must be careful of extrapolating like this- if you believe X then you believe Y about God which means you think God is Z. Such false logic leads to a perilous path of reasoning which results in the breakdown of relationships, slander, misrepresentation and judgmentalism which in itself is so wrong before God. If Eliphaz had left judgment to God and focused instead upon practically helping Job, he wouldn’t have slid into this path of false logic.
22:22 Please receive instruction from His mouth- Eliphaz is playing God here. What he means is, ‘Please receive instruction from me’; he assumes too quickly that his views are God’s. If we accept the Bible as God’s word, then our own intuitions and life wisdom must be seen by us as just that- and not God’s word. The very specific existence of God’s word means quite simply that our word isn’t His.