Job’s excessive plaint against his aggressive and hostile God is intertwined with his surprising confession of confidence (“Bekenntnis der Zuversicht”). It seems to be a special relationship between these two poles which are forming quasi two focuses of an ellipse. This article studies in ch. 16 (and 19) each pole and especially their interrelation in contrast to mitigating tendences in the ancient versions and the rabbinic exegesis. The mythic language of Job’s lament is compared with similar accadian literature for demonstrating both analogies and important differences. The author of the Book of Job uses especially the language of the mythic struggle against chaos (“Chaoskampf”) for his peculiar view of the dialectics in God.
Most translations of Job 13,4 have Job calling his companions something like “smearers of a lie” and “worthless physicians”. Instead, in light of philological and comparative data, he seems to be comparing his friends to the Rephaim, and false gods. In this way, he complains that they have spoken falsely as sources of
wisdom and would mislead their hearers — just as the spirits of the dead were so often said to have done. The verse might thus be translated in this way: “You, however, are blatherers of lies, and false oracles, all of you.
This paper pinpoints how divine folly and human intercession mentioned in Job 42,8 are key concepts to unravel the meaning of the Book of Job. The Epilogue does not restore Job in his former position. Job is not healed but receives a new role as intercessor on behalf of his friends and by extension on behalf of everyone less perfect than he is. Understanding misfortune as the consequence of inescapable bouts of divine folly is the Joban way to account for humanity’s inability to comprehend the divinity.
The LXX version of Job is described as an abbreviated, shortened text. However, it does contain two prominent additions in Job 2,9a-e and 42,17b-e. As far as the first is concerned this article argues that it is not the result of a later hand, nor of a differing Hebrew parent text. Based on a contextual analysis combined with an analysis of lexical items found in the additions, it reaches the conclusion that the translator of the Old Greek in fact is the work of the original translator.
Hos 13,12 and Job 14,17 describe sins as tied in a bundle. Since other verses imply that sins serve as God’s own evidence against sinners, the common image in these two verses is best explained in light of evidence preservation procedures attested in Neo-Babylonian legal texts.
This paper argues that the terms wydb( and wyk)lm in Job 4,18 should be understood as referring to the set motions of the sun, moon, and stars as well as to sporadic meteorological events, respectively. Such understanding does not dilute the validity and force of the qal wahomer in 4,18-19. The comparison is between the inanimate but permanent (sun, moon, stars, meteorological phenomena) and the animate but impermanent (humans). The difficult hlht is assumed to have been originally hhflft;@ from hhl, «languish, faint». Taking hlht as having the meaning «weakness» provides a sense that eminently fits a natural event.
The current understanding of the Book of Job, put forth by M. Tsevat in 1966 and widely accepted, is that YHWH implicitly denies the existence of divine justice. Retribution is not part of reality, but only a delusion. The present article argues that the book teaches the need for fidelity in the face of divine injustice. The Theophany shows a God whose care for the world of nature hints at his care for humans. The reader, unlike Job, knows that Job's suffering is important to God, as establishing the possibility of true human loyalty.
It is widely believed that the Joban poet presents Eliphaz as seeking to reassure Job in his first speech, and only later accuses him of wrongdoing. One prominent exegete, for example, remarks that Eliphaz 'begins considerately, and proceeds with notable gentleness and courtesy' (Terrien). In this paper I propose that Eliphaz’s opening words are neither gentle nor reassuring. Instead, they are a sharp intertextual response to Job’s complaints that he can find no 'rest' (3,26) and that what he 'feared has come upon him' (3,25). In essence, Eliphaz is implying that Job has brought his suffering on himself.