Anyone who has listened to Handel’s Messiah will be familiar with this commonly used prooftext of a physical resurrection from Job 19:25-26:
 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:
 And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:
Jeff Lindsay tells the story of being familiar with these verses from the KJV and trying to use them on his mission. But as he read from his German Bible, he found that the translation in front of him did not support a physical resurrection at all. He learned for himself that this is actually a passage fraught with difficulty for the translator. To wit:
1. The word Redeemer carries a lot of Christian baggage. The Hebrew go’el is the active participle from ga’al, and refers to the role of the near-kinsman (attested in the Book of Ruth), the one who will pay off one’s debts, defend the family honor, avenge a killing, and so forth. To avoid the implications in English “Redeemer,” let’s render “Vindicator” instead.
2. Hebrew ‘acharon is an adjectival formation, suggesting that the Vindciator *is* the last. This same form is used ten verses later in Job 19:35. Many translators altar the form to make it adverbial, “at last,” much as the KJV takes it.
3. The end of the verse literally says “he will arise upon [the] dust.” The word for “dust” here could be simply the earth as the KJV takes it, or it could be an allusion to the dust of Job’s own decomposed body.
4. The next clause literally reads “And after my skin they flay/strike off this,” which is very difficult. The verb to flay/strike off is a third person in the active voice, but there is no subject indicated. So the KJV tries to do something rather ingenious: they make “my skin” part of the subject by adding [worms], and since “this” is undefined they simply add the word [body]. Clever, but most likely wrong. The sense appears to be that “my skin” is the subject and the verb should be construed in a passive sense: “And after my skin has been flayed/struck off/destroyed.”
5. Now we come to the biggie. The inseparable preposition m means “from,” and so the last line should read “yet from my flesh I will see God.” That still leaves the question what that means; it is ambiguous, and can mean “from” in the sense of separation (IE apart from my flesh, without my flesh), or it can mean “from” in the sense of vantage point, in which case “in my flesh” is the appropriate translation.
So will Job’s vindication occur in this life, or is he resigned to die first and await his vindication in the next? And if the latter, will he be physically resurrected or not?