While Bildad continues to pursue his fixed ideas about hardship and judgment, Job gives expression to some unmistakable elements of saving faith. Job appeals to God for a surety - something or someone to ensure his redemption - and his hope is not in this life but in things yet unseen.
Chapter 17 Job appeals his case to God in v.3, asking God to put down a pledge or a surety on his behalf. This request exhibits an understanding of the role of Christ, the surety of Godâ€™s people in the Covenant of Grace (Heb 7:22). Jobâ€™s suffering is again described in messianic terms (v.6,7). His anguish is a public spectacle (cf. v.6 and Ps 22:6,7), and his suffering is described with familiar, messianic language (cf. v.7 and Ps 6:7; 31:9). This hard and cryptic display of Godâ€™s providence in the life of Job will not breed discouragement or doubt in the saints; instead, the righteous will be emboldened in their stand for the truth (v.8) and become more resolved in the pathway of faith (v.9). Job may have had little hope left in life, but he saw his true hope as being beyond this life and beyond the perception of those who mocked him (v.15-17; cf. 1 Cor 15:19; Heb 11:1).
Chapter 18 There is a great measure of truth in what Bildad says; the state of sin is a state of misery. But to turn a general truth such as this into a formula for interpreting providence is wrong. We can rest assured that all things work together for the ultimate purposes of God in judgment and salvation.