It appears that Job is now content with his situation and believes that death is soon to come. The why is unclear, all I can imagine is that he knows that You are present and that whatever happens to him is according to Your will and he’s willing to do whatever is needed to please You.
And that’s how everyone should be because when You are in charge all is best.
Job’s friends’ application of traditional wisdom to human suffering has been even more unsatisfactory than Job’s untraditional response. Both attempts to penetrate the mystery have failed, and the dialogue has come to an unsatisfactory conclusion.
Therefore Job, or perhaps the unknown author of the book, inserts a striking wisdom poem that answers the question, Where shall wisdom be found? (v 12).
The poem consists of three parts: (1) precious stones and metals are found in the deepest mines (vv 1-11); (2) wisdom is not found in mines, nor can it be bought with precious stones or metals (vv 12-19); and (3) wisdom is found only in God and in the fear of Him (vv 20-28).
The chapter then anticipates the theme of God’s speeches (38:1-42:5). God alone is the answer to the mystery that Job and his friends have sought to fathom.
Surely there is a vein for the silver, and a place for gold where they fine it.
Iron is taken out of the earth, and brass is molten out of the stone.
He setteth an end to darkness, and searcheth out all perfection: the stones of darkness, and the shadow of death.
The flood breaketh out from the inhabitant; even the waters forgotten of the foot: they are dried up, they are gone away from men.
As for the earth, out of it cometh bread: and under it is turned up as it were fire.
The stones of it are the place of sapphires: and it hath dust of gold.
There is a path which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture’s eye hath not seen:
The lion’s whelps have not trodden it, nor the fierce lion passed by it.
He putteth forth his hand upon the rock; he overturneth the mountains by the roots.
He cutteth out rivers among the rocks; and his eye seeth every precious thing.
He bindeth the floods from overflowing; and the thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light (Job 28:1-11).
cutteth out rivers among the rocks – makes tunnels. An 18th century B.C. inscription found at Jerusalem’s Pool of Siloam testifies to the sophistication of ancient tunneling technology. A fascinating, lyrical description of ancient mining techniques.
But where shall wisdom be found? and where is the place of understanding?
Man knoweth not the price thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living.
The depth saith, It is not in me: and the sea saith, It is not with me.
It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof.
It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the precious onyx, or the sapphire.
The gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold.
No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls: for the price of wisdom is above rubies.
The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it, neither shall it be valued with pure gold.
Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding?
Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living, and kept close from the fowls of the air.
Destruction and death say, We have heard the fame thereof with our ears.
God understandeth the way thereof, and he knoweth the place thereof (Job 28:12-23).
Shishak or Susac or Shishaq is the biblical Hebrew form of the first ancient Egyptian name of a pharaoh mentioned in the Bible.
The Bubastite Portal at Karnak, depicting a list of city states conquered by Shoshenq I in his Near Eastern military campaigns.
Shishak is best known for his campaign against the Kingdom of Judah, as recorded in the Hebrew Bible (1 Kgs 14:25;2 Chr 12:1-12).
Shishak had provided refuge to Jeroboam during the later years of Solomon’s reign, and upon Solomon’s death, Jeroboam became king of the tribes in the north, which became the Kingdom of Israel.
In the fifth year of Rehoboam’s reign (commonly dated between 926 and 917 B.C.), Shishak swept through the kingdom of Judah with a powerful army, in support of his ally.
According to 2 Chr 12:3, he was supported by the Lubim (Libyans), the Sukkiim, and the Kushites” (“Ethiopians” in the Septuagint).
According to the biblical story Shishak carried off many of the treasures of the temple and the royal palace in Jerusalem, including the “shields of gold” that Solomon had made.
The story is not specific about the means by which he acquired these treasures, though it is most likely that he received them as a tribute from Rehoboam to secure peace.
Texts written in various ancient languages seem to indicate that the first vowel was both long and round, and the final vowel was short.
For example, the name is written in the Hebrew Bible as שישק [ʃiːʃaq].
The variant readings in Hebrew, which are due to confusion between the letters < י > Yod and < ו > Vav that are particularly common in the Masoretic Text, indicate that the first vowel was long in pronunciation.
The Septuagint uses Σουσακιμ [susakim], derived from the marginal reading שושק [ʃuːʃaq] of Hebrew.
This indicates during the 2nd century B.C. Hebrew-speakers or Alexandrian Greek-speakers pronounced the name with an initial long close back rounded vowel [u].
Shishak identified as Pharaoh Sheshonk
The Bubastite Portal at Karnak, showing the cartouches of Sheshonk I.
In the very early years after the decipherment of Egyptian hieroglyphs, on chronological, historical, and linguistic grounds, nearly all Egyptologists identified Shishak with Sheshonk I.
This position was maintained by most scholars ever since, and is still the majority position.
The fact that Shoshenq I left behind “explicit records of a campaign into Canaan (scenes; a long list of Canaanite place-names from the Negev to Galilee; stele), including a stela [found] at Megiddo” supports the traditional interpretation.
Other identifications have been put forward which have been considered fringe theories.
In his book Ages in Chaos, Immanuel Velikovsky identified him with Thutmose III.
More recently, David Rohl’s New Chronology identified him with Ramesses II, and Peter James has identified him with Ramesses III.Destruction and death – Sheol is located in the depths of the earth (cf Ps 139:8), but wisdom is in such a remote place that even death and destruction have only heard of its fame (rumor/reputation).
For he looketh to the ends of the earth, and seeth under the whole heaven;
To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure.
When he made a decree for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder:
Then did he see it, and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out.
And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding (Job 28:24-28).
fear of the Lords…depart from evil – See the description of Job’s character in 1:1, 8; 2:3.
that is wisdom – The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom (Ps 111:10; Prov 9:10).
The Campaign of Shishak
Pharaoh Sheshonk I, who ruled Egypt from around 945-924 B.C. (931-910 B.C. on an alternative chronology), is probably the Shishak of the Bible, 1 Kgs 11:40 states that Shishak provided refuge for Jeroboam when he was fleeing from Solomon.
Five years after the division of the United Monarchy, Shishak invaded Judah (2 Chr 12:1-9).
At Karnak in Egypt, near Thebes, at the great temple of Amun, stands an entryway known as the Bubastite Portal. This imposing entrance was probably constructed or renovated by Sheshonk I (the temple complex had existed for hundreds of years prior to Sheshonk and had been built up by numerous pharaohs).
On one of the walls of the Bubastite Portal is featured a commemorative relief of Sheshonk’s expedition into the region now known as Palestine. Although it is now badly damaged, enough remains to indicate that this pharaoh not only attacked Judah, as the Bible records, but campaigned against the northern kingdom as well.
Sheshonk, depicted on the right hand side of the scene, is about to club a group of foreigners. On the left side is pictured the Egyptian god Amun leading off captive cities with ropes.
Each city is represented by an oval cartouche containing the name of the city, with a bound prisoner on top. The list primarily contains place-names in the northern kingdom of Israel.
Megiddo is one of the towns listed in the Bubastite Protal. Sheshonk’s claim to have sacked Megiddo seems to be confirmed by a portion of a commemorative stele found there in 1926.
Sheshon’s name can be clearly read, and the stele is probably from his campaign. Many other destruction layers found at Palestinian sites from this period are also attributed to Sheshonk.
When his son Osorkon I took the throne, he donated huge amounts of gold and silver to the temples in Egypt, much of it very likely plunder from Sheshonk’s raids on Israel and Judah.
The equation of Shishak with Sheshonk is not without its problems. Most notable is the fact that Sheshonk’s invasion involved a direct attack on the cities of the northern kingdom of Israel under Jeroboam I, even though 1 Kgs 11:40 suggests that Shishak was Jeroboam’s patron.
Also, Jerusalem is missing from Sheshonk’s list of subjugated sites, although 1 Kgs 14 and 2 Chr 12 both record Shishak’s plundering of the temple and palace.
However, it is certainly possible that relations between Jeroboam I and Sheshonk/Shishak had deteriorated after Jeroboam had seized control of northern Israel.
The Bible does not provide us with a detailed political history of these times. Also, only about 15% of the writing on the Bubastite Portal is legible, and the absence of Jerusalem from the (readable) names does not prove that it was never there.
It is possible that the inscription also mentions the “highlands of David” in its reference to Israel. If so, it is the earliest extra-biblical reference to David in existence and as such affords powerful evidence that he was in fact the great king the Bible portrays him to be.
The interpretation of the relevant line of this text, however, is disputed.