In this chapter, we get a little glimpse of what Job believed concerning what a person does and doesn’t do. He is well aware that it’s wrong to violate laws, but he’s also aware that the failure to do good, when anyone has an opportunity to do so, is also sin, Galatians 6:10 / James 4:17.
As we go through this chapter take note of the way Job uses the words, ‘if’ and ‘then’. In the days of Job, someone could disown a crime by calling down a curse on themselves, if they were guilty, hence why Job says, if I have done this, then may I be punished for it, 2 Samuel 3:35.
He begins by acknowledging he has made a covenant with his eyes and carefully watched his own steps, he is also fully aware that God has watched his steps too, Matthew 5:28-32 / 2 Peter 2:14. If he has sinned, then he asked what blessing should he expect from God because of his sin.
If he was found guilty, then he was willing to give up everything, including his wife. She could be given to another husband to grind his grain, Ruth 1:17. Adultery was considered by Job to be a heinous crime against another person, and so, this was punishable by severe judgment, Deuteronomy 28:30ff.
His mind is set on remaining pure in different areas of his life, he is determined not to sin, and maintains he has been living in integrity.
He is determined not to sin in business, he is determined not to sin in immorality and he is also determined not to sin with people.
He is determined not to mistreat slaves, Ephesians 6:9, and he is determined not to mistreat the poor and the oppressed, James 1:27.
Clarke, in his commentary, says the following.
‘Job is so conscious of his own innocence, that he is willing it should be put to the utmost proof and if found guilty, that he may be exposed to the most distressing and humiliating punishment, even to that of being deprived of his goods, bereaved of his children, his wife made a slave, and subjected to all indignities in that state.’
Job was well aware that God was a God of love and mercy but he was also well aware that God was a God of just judgment, 2 Corinthians 5:10.
Job is also determined not to sin in idolatry, he is determined not to sin with money, that is, using money as a god. If he had made gold his god, then he would have abused the rights of others in order to acquire it.
He is also determined not to sin in worship. He denied that he worshipped the sun or moon, in other words, he wants an idolater. If he had worshipped other gods, then he would have denied the one true and living God.
Job’s wealth didn’t come to him because he was submissive to some idol god, for it wasn’t wealth that was the goal of his life, Jeremiah 44:17-19 / Ezekiel 8:16.
Job is also determined not to sin with enemies and strangers, Ezekiel 33:11. He didn’t curse his enemies by calling evil to come on them, Numbers 22:5-6 / Proverbs 24:17-18 / Proverbs 25:21-22.
Everyone in Job’s house had more than enough food to eat, no one went hungry and there was no one who travelled had to stay in the street, for Job was hospitable to everyone, Romans 12:13.
Job is also determined not to sin by committing hypocrisy. He cried out for people to listen as to why he is innocent but no one would hear. God was silent, and his friends accused him. If his behaviour was written down, he knows he would be found to be innocent and he could approach God with the confidence of a ruler.
Job is also determined not to mistreat the land. He calls on the owners of the land to be a witness to him. If he had taken their produce without paying for it, then he assumed responsibility for his actions. If he hadn’t, then he asked that wild weeds take over his land and consume his crops.
The chapter ends by telling us that Job has now finished his arguments, both to his friends and to God.