Will God hear his cry when trouble comes on him?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Job 27:9. Will God hear his cry when trouble cometh? — When any calamity comes upon him; or, when his conscience accuses him, and his guilt flies in his face? Will God pay any regard to the cries of one who regarded him so little?Job 27:8-9 so as to make excellent sense, though not strictly in accordance with the original. "What hope hath the hypocrite though he have great good, and though God give him riches after his heart's desire? Doth God hear him the sooner, when he crieth unto him in his necessity?" The object of the verse is to show the miserable condition of a wicked man or a hypocrite. This is shown by the fact which Job asserts, that God will not hear his cry when he feels his need of aid, and when he is induced to call upon him. This is true only when his object in calling upon God is merely for help. If he has no relentings for his sin, and no real confidence in God; if he calls upon him in trouble, intending to return to his sins as soon as the trouble is over, or if such is the state of his mind that God sees that he would return to his sins as soon as his calamities cease, then he cannot be expected to hear him. But if he comes with a penitent heart, and with a sincere purpose to forsake his sins and to devote himself to God, there is no reason to doubt that he would bear him. The argument of Job is in the main sound. It is, that if a man wishes the favor of God, and the assurance that he will hear his prayer, he must lead a holy life. A hypocrite cannot expect his favor: compare the notes at Isaiah 1:15.
When trouble cometh upon him; when his guilty conscience will fly in his face, so as he dare not pray; and accuse him to God, so as God will not hear him. Psalm 66:18; every man has trouble more or less in this life, even the best of men; and generally speaking they have the most, and wicked men the least; but when death comes, he is a king of terrors to them, and they find sorrow and trouble; and especially at the day of judgment, when they will cry for mercy; and hypocrites, as the foolish virgins, will cry, "Lord, Lord, open unto us", Matthew 25:11; but when they call for mercy, the Lord will not answer, but laugh at their calamity, and mock when their fear cometh, Proverbs 1:26; but God hears the cries of his people when in, trouble, whether in, life, or, in death, and is a present help unto them; and when, strength and heart fail, he is their portion, and will be so for evermore; and though sometimes they think he does not hear them, as Job sometimes complains, yet he makes it appear that he does sooner or later, and so Job describes himself as one that "calleth upon God, and he answereth him", Job 12:4; and therefore might conclude he was no hypocrite. Will God hear his cry when trouble cometh upon him?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 9. - Will God hear his cry when trouble cometh upon Him? Can he expect that in the day of trouble, "when distress and anguish come upon him" (Proverbs 1:27), God will hear his cry, and respond to it, and give him relief? No; conscious hypocrisy - living a lie - cuts off from God, severs between a man and his Maker, makes all prayers for help vain, until it is repented of and put away from us. The man who dies in it is in a desperate case.
2 As God liveth, who hath deprived me of my right,
And the Almighty, who hath sorely saddened my soul -
3 For still all my breath is in me,
And the breath of Eloah in my nostrils -
4 My lips do not speak what is false,
And my tongue uttereth not deceit!
5 Far be it from me, to grant that you are in the right:
Till I die I will not remove my innocence from me.
6 My righteousness I hold fast, and let it not go:
My heart reproacheth not any of my days.
7 Mine enemy must appear as an evil-doer,
And he who riseth up against me as unrighteous.
The friends are silent, Job remains master of the discourse, and his continued speech is introduced as a continued שׂאת משׁלו (after the analogy of the phrase נשׂא קול), as in Numbers 23:7 and further on, the oracles of Balaam. משׁל is speech of a more elevated tone and more figurative character; here, as frequently, the unaffected outgrowth of an elevated solemn mood. The introduction of the ultimatum, as משׁל, reminds one of "the proverb (el-methel) seals it" in the mouth of the Arab, since in common life it is customary to use a pithy saying as the final proof at the conclusion of a speech.
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