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Job 16:1-22. JOB'S REPLY.
2. (Job 13:4).
3. "Words of wind," Hebrew. He retorts upon Eliphaz his reproach
4. heap up--rather, "marshal together (an army of) words against
5. strengthen . . . with . . . mouth--bitter irony. In allusion to Eliphaz' boasted "consolations" (Job 15:11). Opposed to strengthening with the heart, that is, with real consolation. Translate, "I also (like you) could strengthen with the mouth," that is, with heartless talk: "And the moving of my lips (mere lip comfort) could console (in the same fashion as you do)" [UMBREIT]. "Hearty counsel" (Pr 27:9) is the opposite.
6. eased--literally, "What (portion of my sufferings) goes from me?"
7. But now--rather, "ah!"
8. filled . . . with wrinkles--Rather (as also the same Hebrew word in
English Version, "cut down"), "thou hast fettered me, thy
witness" (besides cutting off my "band of witnesses,"
that is, hast disabled me by pains from properly attesting my
innocence. But another "witness" arises against him, namely, his
"leanness" or wretched state of body, construed by his friends into a
proof of his guilt. The radical meaning of the Hebrew is "to
draw together," whence flow the double meaning "to bind" or "fetter,"
and in Syriac, "to wrinkle."
9. Image from a wild beast. So God is represented
10. gaped--not in order to devour, but to mock him. To fill his cup of
misery, the mockery of his friends
is added to the hostile treatment from God
12. I was at ease--in past times
13. his archers--The image of
is continued. God, in making me His "mark," is accompanied by the three
friends, whose words wound like sharp arrows.
15. sewed--denoting the tight fit of the mourning garment; it was
a sack with armholes closely sewed to the body.
16. foul--rather, "is red," that is, flushed and heated
18. my blood--that is, my undeserved suffering. He compares himself
to one murdered, whose blood the earth refuses to drink up until he is
(Ge 4:10, 11;
Eze 24:1, 8;
The Arabs say that the dew of heaven will not descend on a spot watered
with innocent blood (compare
19. Also now--Even now, when I am so greatly misunderstood on earth,
God in heaven is sensible of my innocence.
20. Hebrew, "are my scorners"; more forcibly, "my mockers--my friends!" A heart-cutting paradox [UMBREIT]. God alone remains to whom he can look for attestation of his innocence; plaintively with tearful eye, he supplicates for this.
21. one--rather, "He" (God). "Oh, that He would plead for a man
(namely, me) against God." Job quaintly says, "God must support me
against God; for He makes me to suffer, and He alone knows me to be
innocent" [UMBREIT]. So God helped Jacob in wrestling against Himself
God in Jesus Christ does plead with God for man
(Ro 8:26, 27).