Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Job 42:8

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Take - seven bullocks and seven rams - From this it appears that Job was considered a priest, not only in his own family but also for others. For his children he offered burnt-offerings, Job 1:5; and now he is to make the same kind of offerings, accompanied with intercession, in behalf of his three friends. This is a full proof of the innocence and integrity of Job: a more decided one could not be given, that the accusations of his friends, and their bitter speeches, were as untrue as they were malevolent. God thus clears his character, and confounds their devices.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Therefore take unto you - Or, FOR yourselves.

Seven bullocks and seven rams - The number “seven” was a common number in offering animals for sacrifice; see Leviticus 23:18; Numbers 29:32. It was not a number, however, confined at all to Jewish sacrifices, for we find that Balaam gave the direction to Balak, king of Moab, to prepare just this number for sacrifice. “And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven oxen and seven rams;” Numbers 23:1, Numbers 23:29. The number “seven” was early regarded as a perfect number, and it was probably with reference to this that that number of victims was selected, with an intention of offering a sacrifice that would be complete or perfect.

And go to my servant Job - An acknowledgment of his superiority. It is probably to be understood, also, that Job would act as the officiating priest in offering up the sacrifice. It is observable that no allusion is made in this book to the priestly office, and the conclusion is obvious that the scene is laid before the institution of that office among the Jews; compare the notes at Job 1:5.

And offer up for yourselves - That is, by the aid of Job. They were to make the offering, though Job was evidently to be the officiating priest.

A burnt-offering - Notes, Job 1:5.

And my servant Job shall pray for you - In connection with the offering, or as the officiating priest. This is a beautiful instance of the nature and propriety of intercession for others. Job was a holy man; his prayers would be acceptable to God, and his friends were permitted to avail themselves of his powerful intercession in their behalf. It is also an instance showing the nature of the patriarchal worship. It did not consist merely in offering sacrifices. Prayer was to be connected with sacrifices, nor is there any evidence that bloody offerings were regarded as available in securing acceptance with God, except in connection with fervent prayer. It is also an instance showing the nature of the patriarchal “piety.” It was “presumed” that Job would be ready to do this, and would not hesitate thus to pray for his “friends.” Yet it could not be forgotten how much they had wounded his feelings; how severe had been their reproaches; nor how confidently they had maintained that he was an eminently bad man. But it was presumed now that Job would be ready to forgive all this; to welcome his friends to a participation in the same act of worship with him, and to pray for them that their sins might be forgiven. Such is religion, alike in the patriarchal age and under the gospel, prompting us to be ready to forgive those who have pained or injured us, and making us ready to pray that God would pardon and bless them.

For him will I accept - Margin, “his face,” or “person.” So the Hebrew. So in Genesis 19:21 (“margin,”) compare Deuteronomy 28:50. The word “face” is thus used to denote the “person,” or man. The meaning is, that Job was so holy and upright that God would regard his prayers.

Lest I deal with you after your folly - As their folly had deserved. There is particular reference here to the sentiments which they had advanced respecting the divine character and government.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
After the Lord had convinced and humbled Job, and brought him to repentance, he owned him, comforted him, and put honour upon him. The devil had undertaken to prove Job a hypocrite, and his three friends had condemned him as a wicked man; but if God say, Well done, thou good and faithful servant, it is of little consequence who says otherwise. Job's friends had wronged God, by making prosperity a mark of the true church, and affliction a certain proof of God's wrath. Job had referred things to the future judgment and the future state, more than his friends, therefore he spake of God that which was right, better than his friends had done. And as Job prayed and offered sacrifice for those that had grieved and wounded his spirit, so Christ prayed for his persecutors, and ever lives, making intercession for the transgressors. Job's friends were good men, and belonged to God, and He would not let them be in their mistake any more than Job; but having humbled him by a discourse out of the whirlwind, he takes another way to humble them. They are not to argue the matter again, but they must agree in a sacrifice and a prayer, and that must reconcile them, Those who differ in judgment about lesser things, yet are one in Christ the great Sacrifice, and ought therefore to love and bear with one another. When God was angry with Job's friends, he put them in a way to make peace with him. Our quarrels with God always begin on our part, but the making peace begins on his. Peace with God is to be had only in his own way, and upon his own terms. These will never seem hard to those who know how to value this blessing: they will be glad of it, like Job's friends, upon any terms, though ever so humbling. Job did not insult over his friends, but God being graciously reconciled to him, he was easily reconciled to them. In all our prayers and services we should aim to be accepted of the Lord; not to have praise of men, but to please God.
Ellen G. White
The Desire of Ages, 471

It was generally believed by the Jews that sin is punished in this life. Every affliction was regarded as the penalty of some wrongdoing, either of the sufferer himself or of his parents. It is true that all suffering results from the transgression of God's law, but this truth had become perverted. Satan, the author of sin and all its results, had led men to look upon disease and death as proceeding from God,—as punishment arbitrarily inflicted on account of sin. Hence one upon whom some great affliction or calamity had fallen had the additional burden of being regarded as a great sinner. DA 471.1

Thus the way was prepared for the Jews to reject Jesus. He who “hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows” was looked upon by the Jews as “stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted;” and they hid their faces from Him. Isaiah 53:4, 3. DA 471.2

God had given a lesson designed to prevent this. The history of Job had shown that suffering is inflicted by Satan, and is overruled by God for purposes of mercy. But Israel did not understand the lesson. The same error for which God had reproved the friends of Job was repeated by the Jews in their rejection of Christ. DA 471.3

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