Job 14:3
And does you open your eyes on such an one, and bring me into judgment with you?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Job 14:3. And dost thou open thine eyes on such a one? — Dost thou, the infinite Jehovah, the self-existent, independent, and supreme Lord of all, the Almighty, open thine eyes on such an insignificant and helpless creature? Dost thou, the immutable, the eternal God, behold and take account of such a frail, changeable, and short-lived being? Dost thou, ever- blessed and most holy, regard such an infirm, polluted, and miserable object? Dost thou take any thought or care about him? Is he not infinitely beneath thy notice? And dost thou stoop so low as even to observe his ways, yea, all his ways? And bringest me into judgment with thee — Pleadest with me by thy judgments, and thereby, in a manner, forcest me to plead with thee. Dost thou bring me, such a worthless worm as I am, into judgment with thee, who art so quick-sighted to discover the least failing, so holy to hate it, so just to condemn it, so mighty to punish it? The consideration of our inability to contend with God, of our own sinfulness and weakness, should engage us to pray, Lord, enter not into judgment with thy servant.14:1-6 Job enlarges upon the condition of man, addressing himself also to God. Every man of Adam's fallen race is short-lived. All his show of beauty, happiness, and splendour falls before the stroke of sickness or death, as the flower before the scythe; or passes away like the shadow. How is it possible for a man's conduct to be sinless, when his heart is by nature unclean? Here is a clear proof that Job understood and believed the doctrine of original sin. He seems to have intended it as a plea, why the Lord should not deal with him according to his own works, but according to His mercy and grace. It is determined, in the counsel and decree of God, how long we shall live. Our times are in his hands, the powers of nature act under him; in him we live and move. And it is very useful to reflect seriously on the shortness and uncertainty of human life, and the fading nature of all earthly enjoyments. But it is still more important to look at the cause, and remedy of these evils. Until we are born of the Spirit, no spiritually good thing dwells in us, or can proceed from us. Even the little good in the regenerate is defiled with sin. We should therefore humble ourselves before God, and cast ourselves wholly on the mercy of God, through our Divine Surety. We should daily seek the renewing of the Holy Ghost, and look to heaven as the only place of perfect holiness and happiness.And dost thou open thine eyes upon such an one? - Is one so weak, so frail, so short-lived, worthy the constant vigilance of the infinite God? In Zechariah 12:4, the expression "to open the eyes" upon one, means to look angrily upon him. Here it means to observe or watch closely.

And bringest me into judgment with thee - Is it equal or proper that one so frail and feeble should be called to a trial with one so mighty as the infinite God? Does God seek a trial with one so much his inferior, and so unable to stand before him? This is language taken from courts of justice, and the meaning is, that the parties were wholly unequal, and that it was unworthy of God to maintain a controversy in this manner with feeble man. This is a favorite idea with Job, that there was no equality between him and God, and that the whole controversy was, therefore, conducted on his part with great disadvantage; compare the notes at Job 9:34-35.

3. open … eyes upon—Not in graciousness; but, "Dost Thou sharply fix Thine eyes upon?" (See on [504]Job 7:20; also see on [505]Job 1:7). Is one so frail as man worthy of such constant watching on the part of God? (Zec 12:4).

me—so frail.

thee—so almighty.

Dost thou open thine eyes upon such an one; either,

1. To take thought or care about him. Or rather,

2. To observe all his ways, that thou mayst find cause of punishment. He is not a fit match for thee. It is below thee to contend with him, and to use thy infinite wisdom and power to crush him. This seems best to suit with the scope and context.

Bringest me into judgment with thee, i.e. pleadest with me by thy judgments, and thereby, in a manner, forcest me to plead with thee, without granting me those two necessary and favourable conditions, expressed Job 13:20,21. And dost thou open thine eyes on such an one,.... So frail and feeble, so short lived and sorrowful, so soon and easily cut down and destroyed: and by opening of his eyes is not meant his providential care of men; whose eyes indeed are everywhere, run to and fro throughout the earth, and are careful of and provident for all sorts of men, which is very wonderful, Psalm 8:4; nor the displays of his special grace and favour towards his own peculiar people, on whom his eyes of love, grace, and mercy, are opened, and are never withdrawn from them, which is marvellous lovingkindness; but the exercise of rigorous justice in punishing, afflicting, and chastising with so much severity, as Job thought to be his own case; the eyes of God, as he thought, were set on him for evil, and not for good; he looked wistly on him, and in a very frowning manner; he sharpened his eye upon him, as the phrase is, Job 16:9; and as some render the word (f) here, looked narrowly into all his ways, and watched every motion and every step he took, and pursued him with great eagerness, and used him with great strictness in a way of justice, which he, a poor, weak creature, was not able to bear; which sense is confirmed by what follows:

and bringeth me into judgment with thee? by this it appears Job has a view to himself all along, and to the procedure of God against him, which he took to be in strict justice, and that was what he was not able to bear; he was not a match for God, being such a frail, weak, sinful, mortal creature; nor was God a man as he was, that they should come together in judgment, or be fit persons to contend together upon the foot of strict justice; sinful man can never be just with God upon this bottom, or be able to answer to one objection or charge of a thousand brought against him; and therefore, as every sensible man will deprecate God's entering into judgment with him, so Job here expostulates with God why he should bring him into judgment with him; when, as he fled to his grace and mercy, he should rather show that to him than in a rigorous manner deal with him.

(f) "super illo acuis oculos tuos", Cocceius; "super hune apertos vibras oculos", Schultens.

And dost thou open thine eyes upon such an {b} one, and bringest me into judgment with thee?

(b) His meaning is, that seeing that man is so frail a creature, God should not handle him so extremely, in which Job shows the wickedness of the flesh, when it is not subject to the Spirit.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
3. A question of astonishment at the severity of God’s dealing with a creature of such weakness as man. “To open the eyes” is to look narrowly to, to watch in order to punish.Verse 3. - And dost thou open thine eyes upon such a one? Is it compatible with God's greatness, unchangeableness, and majesty to take any notice of so poor, weak, and unstable a creature as mortal man? The question has been often asked, and answered by many in the negative, as by the Epicureans of old. Job does not really entertain any doubt upon the point; but only intends to express his wonder that it should be so (comp. Psalm 8:4, and above, Job 7:17). And bringest me into judgment with thee? Especially astonishing is it, Job says, that God should condescend to try, pass judgment on, and punish so weak, worthless, and transitory a creature as himself. 23 How many are mine iniquities and sins?

Make me to know my transgression and sin! - -

24 Wherefore dost Thou hide Thy face,

And regard me as Thine enemy?

25 Wilt Thou frighten away a leaf driven to and fro,

And pursue the dry stubble?

When עון and חטּאת, פּשׁע and חטּאת, are used in close connection, the latter, which describes sin as failing and error, signifies sins of weakness (infirmities, Schwachheitssnde); whereas עון (prop. distorting or bending) signifies misdeed, and פשׁע (prop. breaking loose, or away from, Arab. fsq) wickedness which designedly estranges itself from God and removes from favour, both therefore malignant sin (Bosheitssnde).

(Note: Comp. the development of the idea of the synonyms for sin in von Hofmann, Schriftbeweis, i. 483ff., at the commencement of the fourth Lehrstck.)

The bold self-confidence which is expressed in the question and challenge of Job 13:23 is, in Job 13:24, changed to grievous astonishment that God does not appear to him, and on the contrary continues to pursue him as an enemy without investigating his cause. Has the Almighty then pleasure in scaring away a leaf that is already blown to and fro? העלה, with He interrog., like החכם, Job 15:2, according to Ges. 100, 4. ערץ used as transitive here, like Psalm 10:18, to terrify, scare away affrighted. Does it give Him satisfaction to pursue dried-up stubble? By את (before an indeterminate noun, according to Ges. 117, 2) he points δεικτικῶς to himself: he, the powerless one, completely deprived of strength by sickness and pain, is as dried-up stubble; nevertheless God is after him, as though He would get rid of every trace of a dangerous enemy by summoning His utmost strength against him.

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