In a previous post, we said that Eliphaz, Bildad, Zophar and Job all have distinctive personalities that come through their speeches. Eliphaz is the gentle counselor, who also is willing to pour salt into the wound. Bildad is a moralist, seeking to lay blame on Job for his faults. Zophar is much like Bildad, however he has a unique personality. He is very sensitive to and critical of those who stray away from his dogma. In Ch 20, he begins by talking about how offended he is at Job, and then he delivers a 3 point sermon on how Job is the problem. Thus he feels that he has defended God, dogma and himself.
In reading the text of Ch 20, it even breaks out into an alliterated outline –
- The Rule v. 1-11, esp v. 5,6
- The Results v. 12-18
- The Reason v. 19-29
We know people like this. They can not afford compassion, because they are defending their system of belief and the Lord. One would think if the truth is so established, and if the Lord is who we say he is, the Dogmatist could lighten up. But, perhaps, it is his self-understanding that is in danger.