Job: Part XI
Rabbi Israel Chait
Student’s edited notes from taped lectures
Job continues to describe the emotions, to which he did not fall prey. In verse 13, Job describes how he never looked down upon a servant based on egoistic drives sourced in his relatively higher position. Why does Job state the words, “manservant and maidservant when they contended with me”? A manservant denotes the plain idea of “looking ‘down upon”, while the second part deals with the idea of feeling that he could use his position as “master” to mistreat his maidservant. In verse 15 Job explains why he should not feel any more important: both he and the servants were ‘made in the belly’ alike. Thus, they are the same and the feeling of importance due to a situation, did not have a hold upon him. In verse 14, Job states, “he did not make gold his hope.” He never felt any different due to the wealth that he had. Verse 29, he felt no joy in seeing his enemy’s fall. He never succumbed to base emotions. Verse 34, no amount of pressure could cause him to deviate from his values.
Job ends his words here, and states that if a man totally righteous like he could be subject to so much evil, this refutes God’s Providence.
The story of Job to this point, as an account of someone who lived his best, according to Halacha and philosophy, and yet, very terrible tidings befell him. This is to say that this could happen to anyone even though he tries his best to keep Judaism. How is this possible that one can do everything in his power to live the correct life and yet the system of God does not work for him?