Daily Devotional Thursday 2nd September 2021

by William Moody

Job 18

Bildad Speaks: God Punishes the Wicked

18:1 Then Bildad the Shuhite answered and said:

  “How long will you hunt for words?
    Consider, and then we will speak.
  Why are we counted as cattle?
    Why are we stupid in your sight?
  You who tear yourself in your anger,
    shall the earth be forsaken for you,
    or the rock be removed out of its place?
  “Indeed, the light of the wicked is put out,
    and the flame of his fire does not shine.
  The light is dark in his tent,
    and his lamp above him is put out.
  His strong steps are shortened,
    and his own schemes throw him down.
  For he is cast into a net by his own feet,
    and he walks on its mesh.
  A trap seizes him by the heel;
    a snare lays hold of him.
10   A rope is hidden for him in the ground,
    a trap for him in the path.
11   Terrors frighten him on every side,
    and chase him at his heels.
12   His strength is famished,
    and calamity is ready for his stumbling.
13   It consumes the parts of his skin;
    the firstborn of death consumes his limbs.
14   He is torn from the tent in which he trusted
    and is brought to the king of terrors.
15   In his tent dwells that which is none of his;
    sulfur is scattered over his habitation.
16   His roots dry up beneath,
    and his branches wither above.
17   His memory perishes from the earth,
    and he has no name in the street.
18   He is thrust from light into darkness,
    and driven out of the world.
19   He has no posterity or progeny among his people,
    and no survivor where he used to live.
20   They of the west are appalled at his day,
    and horror seizes them of the east.
21   Surely such are the dwellings of the unrighteous,
    such is the place of him who knows not God.”


We left Job in chapter 17 in the depths of despair, Bildad’s response here is therefore so heartless. Bildad’s takes Job’s comments very personally and he goes into this speech about the wicked. He has truth here about the final outcome for the wicked, but his implication that Job is one of the wicked is wrong. Derek Thomas highlights five things that the wicked will suffer:

  1. Their Lamp Snuffed out (v5-6) — this can speak of an end of life, or a life of dreariness (v6).
  2. An old man shuffling along (v7) — steps shortened speaks of weakness.
  3. Traps (v8-10) — he’s tripped up in his plans.
  4. Disease and fear of death (v11-13)
  5. Fire and destruction (v15-16)

lf this was not enough, there is also the fact that memories of him disappears (v17-19) and the mention of posterity (v19) is particularly cruel given what happened to Job’s family. There is some truth in Bildad’s words, but they are said with absolutely no love for Job. Have we truth with love?


Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.