Job 20: "Zophar replies to the second test experienced by the
patient Job, claiming that any seeming prosperity is short-lived. It is more
harsh than the first reply (Job 11). He adds coarseness and rudeness to his
previous hostility (Job 20:7,15). Roused by the closing warning of Job (Job
19:28,29; cp Job 20:2,3), his discourse is a covert denunciation of Job as a
wicked hypocrite (vv 5,12,19,29), deservedly punished by God. He predicts the
violent death of Job and the ultimate manifestation of heaven and earth in
witness against him (vv 24-28). So Zophar expounds:  Job's rebuke causes
Zophar's anger: vv 1-3.  The prosperity of the wicked is short-lived: vv 4-9.
 The calamities experienced by the wicked: vv 10-28.  These calamities
represent divine judgment: v 29.
"Zophar's reply is a vicious attack on Job personally (vv
6,7,20-29), and typifies the wicked criticism of the Lord Jesus by the
Pharisees. The serpent used its tongue to attack Adam and Eve in the beginning,
and now the same characteristic is used by Zophar (v 16) against Job. The
serpent uses its tongue to track, on the surface of the earth, the scent of mice
or various prey. In Zophar's argument, the serpent revived, and endeavoured to
track the innocent Job in his sad circumstances. The serpent lives on in all who
act similarly" (GEM).
Vv 1-3: An exasperated Zophar hastens to reply.
HE SHALL PERISH... LIKE HIS OWN DUNG: A figure which
tells us as much of Zophar's coarseness as it does of the wicked's
His posterity, poorer than the poor.
Vv 12-29: Zophar seems to picture Job as a serpent, swallowing
up his prey and producing the venom of snakes! His commentary on Gen
HE HIDES IT UNDER HIS TONGUE: Job is pictured as an
"epicure", savoring the last taste of his ill-gotten gains (v 15).
ADDER: "Ephgeh" (see Isa 51:5n).
GOD: No name of God in the original.
A FIRE UNFANNED: A punishing fire not started by man
(ie started by God). (Cp usage: "an altar not made with hands": Heb 9:11; 2Co