Job begins his prayer with a request for God not to abandon him or make him afraid. Then he asks God what sins he has committed and why He has put him in captivity. He utters the phrase, “Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble” in 14:1. He acknowledges that man’s days are limited and already appointed, and seems to ask God to let his end. He uses and analogy of a tree, even when cut down, having hope to sprout again with water. However, man is done once he dies and is laid away. He asks to be hidden in the grave, for his hope is destroyed forever. He knows he will miss much if he dies, but he is willing.
Eliphaz responds to Job’s prayer with more rebuke. He asks Job if he thinks he is the only one with wisdom. He points out that men older than Job’s father are present, and must be as wise as Job. So why does Job allow his heart to carry him away? He reiterates the idea that the wicked are punished, so therefore Job must be wicked. He alludes to a king who goes into battle with all the right military might, but loses because he goes to battle against God. “Let him not trust in futile things, deceiving himself, For futility will be his reward.”
Job’s prayer is further example of his desparation and sadness over what he regards as God’s ignorance of Job’s plight. Job’s life obviously is a mere shadow of the life he had before. He is in pain, he is sick, he is abhorrent to look upon. His anguish led him to ask questions, but not to sin. When life is at its worst, know that God will still be God, even when you cannot see Him or feel Him. And with friends like Job had, you truly need God to be your source and advocate.