Summary: This is a study into Job chapter twelve.
Who Has Wisdom? - Chapter #12
Job speaks again. Zophar has concluded his remarks – so it is Job’s turn to answer.
1 Then Job answered and said: 2 "No doubt you are the people, And wisdom will die with you! 3 But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Indeed, who does not know such things as these? Job 12:1-3 (NKJV)
JOB’S EQUALITY WITH HIS ACCUSERS
In verse two Job is using irony. The purpose of such language is to ridicule. “You surely have all wisdom and when you die who will be left to instruct us?” "I’m sure you speak for all the experts, and when you die there’ll be no one left to tell us how to live.” Job 12:2 (MSG) In one quick statement he dispels this argument. “But I also have a mind; I am not inferior to you. Who doesn’t know the things you are talking about?” Job 12:3 (HCSB)
Nelson’s Bible Commentary says, “What bold, delicious sarcasm this is! The two personal pronouns you are plural in Hebrew, indicating that Job responds to all three friends who concur that he is guilty and needs to confess his sin. ”
There are three parts to Job’s argument.
1. I have a brain just like you.
2. I know as much as you do.
3. Anyone can see the things you are telling me. It doesn’t take an expert to understand these things.
I am an expert of one thing – me. I know when I don’t feel well physically. I have gone to the doctor and he can find nothing wrong yet I know I still don’t feel well. He may be an expert of the human body – knowing how all the physical parts are to function – but I question whether he is an expert of “my” body. I have lived in this “tent” for over fifty years – and I know when it is feeling well and when it is not.
There is a great difference with the doctor of my physical body and the doctor of my spiritual body. The One who made me inside and out, He knows if I am healthy inside and out. He knows what the problem is – I do too. There are sins we hide from each other – because we can! We can not hide them from God. He knows what we have done. He knows what haunts us in the night. He knows what secrets we try to hide in our closets. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. Romans 3:23 (HCSB) He loves us just the same. He knows the cure. He is the cure! Thank God for His salvation! Thank God for His grace. Thank God for His mercy.
4 "I am one mocked by his friends, Who called on God, and He answered him, The just
and blameless who is ridiculed.
JOB MOCKED BY HIS FRIENDS
In chapter eleven Zophar insinuates that Job is stupid. “But a stupid man will gain understanding as soon as a wild donkey is born a man!” Job 11:12 (HCSB) There has never been a time when a donkey was born of a man – this goes against the order that God has established – everything gives birth “after it’s kind – but there was a time when a donkey spoke wisdom to man. (Numbers 22)
When Job’s friends come to him they said they were coming to help him. In fellowship we are here to encourage one another – not to “Lord it over” one another. You do not need to tell me my sins – I know them better then you. I hope you will come with words of encouragement to get me back on the right path. “Lord let me help those who are around me – but let me do it with all humility.”
In this verse Job describes himself. Two negatives: Mocked and ridiculed. But notice who is doing the mocking and the ridiculing – “his friends”. No wonder it has been said – “with friends like this who needs enemies”. Three positives are also mentioned: Called on God, just and blameless. Notice the results – “God answered”.
All of us should examine ourselves and see where we stand with God. Our friends may mock and ridicule us – but it is God who will be the final judge – let us please Him above all others.
In verse four Job claims his innocence. He also tells them that they are mocking him – even though they say they are his “friend”. “I am a laughingstock to my friends, by calling on God, who answers me. The righteous and upright man is a laughingstock.” Job 12:4 (HCSB) The Message Bible says it this way: "I’m ridiculed by my friends: ’So that’s the man who had conversations with God!’ Ridiculed without mercy: ’Look at the man who never did wrong!’ Job 12:4 (MSG) Some times the biggest criticism comes from other believers. They say they are on our side – yet when we try to take God’s word seriously – they tell us we have gone too far. There will be name calling – comments behind our backs – and sometimes in front of our face. The closer you get to Jesus the more ridicule there will be.