The Spiritual Drama of Job
THE prelude of the poem shows Job in the midst of his desolation, dark thoughts of God's inscrutable Providence surging in his soul, and his friends gathered around to comfort him, but speechless in their sympathy--his pain was so great. Seven days thus pass in silent sorrow. But the warm touch of friendship unseals the fountain of the heart; and the sufferer opens his mouth and pours out his pent-up feelings. With consummate art the poet leads up to the inevitable crisis. A long-drawn wail, in which Job curses his day, because it brought him forth to all this agony, and longs wistfully for death and Sheol, where `the wicked cease from troubling, and the weary are at rest,' a hushed allusion to the unnamed One who has `given light to him that is in misery, and life to the bitter in soul,' and at length Job musters courage to address God as the One who has `hid his way,' and `set an hedge about him,' so that he can turn neither this way nor that (iii. 23).
The reverent spirit of Eliphaz is wounded by Job's impatience, and still more pained by his contempt