Job 30:28
I went mourning without the sun: I stood up, and I cried in the congregation.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(28) I went mourning without the sun.—Rather, I go mourning without the sun; or, according to some, “blackened, but not by the sun.” We give the preference to the other.

I stood up, and I cried in the congregationi.e., not merely in secret, but in the face of all men.

30:15-31 Job complains a great deal. Harbouring hard thoughts of God was the sin which did, at this time, most easily beset Job. When inward temptations join with outward calamities, the soul is hurried as in a tempest, and is filled with confusion. But woe be to those who really have God for an enemy! Compared with the awful state of ungodly men, what are all outward, or even inward temporal afflictions? There is something with which Job comforts himself, yet it is but a little. He foresees that death will be the end of all his troubles. God's wrath might bring him to death; but his soul would be safe and happy in the world of spirits. If none pity us, yet our God, who corrects, pities us, even as a father pitieth his own children. And let us look more to the things of eternity: then the believer will cease from mourning, and joyfully praise redeeming love.I went mourning - Or rather, "I go," in the present tense, for he is now referring to his present calamities, and not to what was past. The word rendered "mourning," however (קדר qâdar), means here rather to be dark, dingy, tanned. It literally means to be foul or turbid, like a torrent, Job 6:16; then to go about in filthy garments, as they do who mourn, Job 5:11; Jeremiah 14:2; then to be dusky, or of a dark color, or to become dark. Thus, it is applied to the sun and moon becoming dark in an eclipse, or when covered with clouds, Jeremiah 4:28; Joel 2:10; Joel 3:15; Micah 3:6. Here it refers to the fact that, by the mere force of his disease, his skin had become dark and swarthy, though he had not been exposed to the burning rays of the sun. The wrath of God had burned upon him, and he had become black under it. Jerome, however, renders it moerens, mourning. The Septuagint, "I go groaning (στένων stenōn) without restraint, or limit" - ἄνευ φιμοῦ aneu fimou. The Chaldee translates it אוכם, "black."

Without the sun - Without being exposed to the sun; or without the agency of the sun. Though not exposed, he had become as dark as if he had been a day-laborer exposed to a burning sun.

I stood up - Or, I stand up.

And cried in the congregation - I utter my cries in the congregation, or when surrounded by the assembled people. Once I stood up to counsel them, and they hung upon my lips for advice; now I stand up only to weep over my accumulated calamities. This indicates the great change which had come upon him, and the depth of his sorrows. A man will weep readily in private; but he will be slow to do it, if he can avoid it, when surrounded by a multitude.

28. mourning—rather, I move about blackened, though not by the sun; that is, whereas many are blackened by the sun, I am, by the heat of God's wrath (so "boiled," Job 30:27); the elephantiasis covering me with blackness of skin (Job 30:30), as with the garb of mourning (Jer 14:2). This striking enigmatic form of Hebrew expression occurs, Isa 29:9.

stood up—as an innocent man crying for justice in an assembled court (Job 30:20).

I went, or, I walked hither and thither as I could. Or, I converse or appear among others.

Mourning without the sun; spending my days in mourning, without any sun-light or comfort; or so oppressed with sadness, that I did not care nor desire to see the light of the sun. Heb. black not by the sun. My very countenance is changed and become black, but not by the sun, which makes many other persons black, Song of Solomon 1:5,6; but by the force of my disease and deep melancholy, which ofttimes makes a man’s visage black and dismal. See Psalm 119:83 Lamentations 5:10. And this he repeats in plainer terms, Job 30:30, as an eminent token of his excessive grief and misery.

I stood up; either because my disease and pain made me weary of other postures; or that others might take notice of me, and be moved with pity towards me.

I cried with a loud and direful clamour, through great and sudden anguish.

In the congregation; where prudence and modesty taught me to forbear it, if extreme necessity and misery had not forced me to it. I went mourning without the sun,.... So overwhelmed with grief, that he refused to have any comfort from, or any advantage by the sun; hence Mr. Broughton renders it, "out of the sun"; he did not choose to walk in the sunshine, but out of it, to indulge his grief and sorrow the more; or he went in black attire, and wrapped and covered himself with it, that he might not see the sun, or receive any relief by it: or "I go black, but not by the sun" (q); his face and his skin were black, but not through the sun looking upon him and discolouring him, as in Sol 1:6; but through the force of his disease, which had changed his complexion, and made him as black as a Kedarene, or those that dwell in the tents of Kedar, Sol 1:5; and he also walked without the sun of righteousness arising on him, with healing in his wings, which was worst of all:

I stood up, and I cried in the congregation: either in the congregation of the saints met together for religious worship, where he cried unto God for help and deliverance, and for the light of his countenance, Job 30:20; or such was the extreme anguish of his soul, that when a multitude of people got about him to see him in his distressed condition, he could not contain himself, but burst out before them in crying and tears, though he knew it was unbecoming a man of his age and character; or he could not content himself to stay within doors and soothe his grief, but must go abroad and in public, and there expressed with strong cries and tears his miserable condition.

(q) "non propter solem", Vatablus; "non a sole", Junius & Tremellius, Drusius, Mercerus; "non ob solem", Piscator.

I went mourning {s} without the sun: I stood up, {t} and I cried in the congregation.

(s) Not delighting in any worldly thing, no not so much as in the use of the sun.

(t) Lamenting them that were in affliction and moving others to pity them.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
28. I went mourning] Better perhaps, I go blackened, not by the sun. The reference is to his appearance from his disease: he is black, but his blackness is not due to the sun, comp. Song of Solomon 1:6.Verses 28, 29. - I went mourning without the sun; rather, I go about blackened, but not by the sun. Grief and suffering, according to Oriental notions, blackened the face (see Lamentations 4:8; Lamentations 5:10; Psalm 119:83; and below, ver. 30). I stood up, and I cried in the congregation; rather, I stand up in the assembly and cry for help (see the Revised Version). Job feels this as the most pitiable feature in his ease. He is broken down; he can no longer endure. At first he could sit in silence for seven days (Job 2:13); now he is reduced to uttering complaints and lamentations. He is a brother, not to dragons, but to jackals. His laments are like the long melancholy cries that those animals emit during the silence of the night, so well known to Eastern travellers. He adds further that he is a companion, not to owls, but to ostriches; which, like jackals, have a melancholy cry (see Micah 1:8; and comp. Dr. Hooker's article in Smith's 'Dict. of the Bible,' vol. 2. p. 650). 20 I cry to Thee for help, and Thou answerest not;

I stand there, and Thou lookest fixedly at me.

21 Thou changest Thyself to a cruel being towards me,

With the strength of Thy hand Thou makest war upon me.

22 Thou raisest me upon the stormy wind,

Thou causest me to drive along And vanish in the roaring of the storm.

23 For I:know: Thou wilt bring me back to death,

Into the house of assembly for all living.

If he cries for help, his cry remains unanswered; if he stands there looking up reverentially to God (perhaps עמד, with משּׁוּע to be supplied, has the sense of desisting or restraining, as Genesis 29:35; Genesis 30:9), the troubling, fixed look of God, who looks fixedly and hostilely upon him, anything but ready to help (comp. Job 7:20; Job 16:9), meets his upturned eye. התבּנן, to look consideringly upon anything, is elsewhere joined with אל, על, עד, or even with the acc; here, where a motionless fixed look is intended, with בּ ( equals fi). It is impossible to draw the לא, Job 30:20, over to ותּתבּנן (Jer., Saad., Umbr., Welte, and others), both on account of the Waw consec. (Ew. 351a), and on account of the separation by the new antecedent עמדתּי. On the reading of two Codd. ותתכנן ("Thou settest Thyself against me"), which Houbigant and Ew. prefer, Rosenm. has correctly pronounced judgment: est potius pro mendo habenda. Instead of consolingly answering his prayer, and instead of showing Himself willing to help, God, who was formerly so kind towards him, changes towards him, His creature, into a cruel being, saevum (אכזר in the book of Job only here and Job 41:2, where it signifies "foolhardy;" comp. לאויב in the dependent passage, Isaiah 63:10), and makes war upon him (שׂטם as Job 16:9) by causing him to feel the strength of His omnipotent hand (עצם יד as Deuteronomy 8:17, synon. חזק).

It is not necessary in Job 30:22 to forsake the accentuation, and to translate: Thou raisest me up, Thou causest me go in the wind (Ew., Hirz., and others); the accentuation of רוח is indeed not a disjunctive Dech, but a conjunctive Tarcha, but preceded by Munach, which, according to the rule, Psalter ii. 500, 5, here, where two conjunctives come together, has a smaller conjunctive value. Therefore: elevas me in ventum, equitare facis me, viz., super ventum (Dachselt), for one does not only say הרכּיב על, 1 Chronicles 13:7, or ל, Psalm 66:12, but also אל, 2 Samuel 6:3; and accordingly תּשּׂאני אל־רוּח is also not to be translated: Thou snatchest me into the wind or storm (Hahn, Schlottm.), but: Thou raisest me up to the wind or storm, as upon an animal for riding (Umbr., Olsh.). According to Oriental tradition, Solomon rode upon the east wind, and in Arabic they say of one who hurried rapidly by, racab al-genâhai er-rih, he rides upon the wings of the wind; in the present passage, the point of comparison is the being absolutely passively hurried forth from the enjoyment of a healthy and happy life to a dizzy height, whence a sudden overthrow threatens him who is unwillingly removed (comp. Psalm 102:11, Thou hast lifted me up and hurled me forth).

The lot which threatens him from this painful suspense Job expresses (Job 30:22) in the puzzling words: וּתמגגני תשׁיּה. Thus the Keri, after which lxx transl. (if it has not read מישׁוּעה), καὶ ἀπέῤῥηιψάς με ἀπὸ σωτηρίας. The modern expositors who follow the Keri, by taking ותמגגני for ותמגג לי (according to Ges. 121, 4), translate: Thou causest counsel and understanding (Welte), happiness (Blumenf.), and the like, to vanish from me; continuance, existence, duration would be better (vid., Job 6:13, and especially on Job 26:3). The thought it appropriate, but the expression is halting. Jerome, who translates valide, points to the correct thing, and Buxtorf (Lex. col. 2342f.) by interpreting the not less puzzling Targum translation in fundamento equals funditus or in essentia equals essentialiter, has, without intending it, hit upon the idea of the Hebr. Keri; תשׁיּה is intended as a closer defining, or adverbial, accusative: Thou causest me to vanish as to existence, ita ut tota essentia pereat h.e. totaliter et omnino. Perhaps this was really the meaning of the poet: most completely, most thoroughly, altogether, like the Arab. ḥaqqan. But it is unfavourable to this Keri, that תושׁיה (from the verb ושׁי), as might be expected, is always written plene elsewhere; the correction of the תשׁוה is violent, and moreover this form, correctly read, gives a sense far more consistent with the figure, Job 30:22. Ges., Umbr., and Carey falsely read תּשׁוּה, terres me; this verb is unknown in Hebr., and even in Chaldee is only used in Ithpeal, אשׁתּוי ( equals Hebr. חרד); for a similar reason Bttcher's תּשׁוה (which is intended to mean: in despair) is also not to be used. Even Stuhlmann perceived that תשׁוה is equivalent to תּשׁוּאה; it is, with Ew. and Olsh., to be read תּשׁוּה (not with Pareau and Hirz. תּשׁוה without the Dag.), and this form signifies, as תשׁואה, Job 36:29, from שׁוא equals שׁאה, from which it is derived by change of consonants, the crash of thunder, or even the rumbling or roar as of a storm or a falling in (procellae sive ruinae). The meaning is hardly, that he who rides away upon the stormy wind melts and trickles down like drops of rain among the pealing of the thunder, when the thunder-storm, whose harbinger is the stormy wind, gathers; but that in the storm itself, which increases in fury to the howling of a tempest, he dissolves away. תּשׁוּה for בּתּשׁוּה, comp. Psalm 107:26 : their soul melted away (dissolved) בּרעה. The compulsory journey in the air, therefore, passes into nothing or nearly nothing, as Job is well aware, Job 30:23 : "for I:know: (without כּי, as Job 19:25; Psalm 9:21) Thou wilt bring me back to death" (acc. of the goal, or locative without any sign). If תּשׁיבני is taken in its most natural signification reduces, death is represented as essentially one with the dust of death (comp. Job 1:21 with Genesis 3:19), or even with non-existence, out of which man is come into being; nevertheless השׁיב can also, by obliterating the notion of return, like redigere, have only the signification of the turn of destiny and change of condition that is effected. The assertion that שׁוּב always includes an "again," and retains it inexorably (vid., Khler on Zechariah 13:7, S. 239), is untenable. In post-biblical Hebrew, at least, it is certain that שׁוּב signifies not only "to become again," but also "to become," as Arab. ‛âd is used as synon. of jâ'in, devenir.

(Note: Vid., my Anekdota der mittelalterlichen Scholastik unter Juden und Moslemen, S. 347.)

With מות, the designation of the condition, is coupled the designation of the place: Hades (under the notion of which that of the grave is included) is the great involuntary rendezvous of all who live in this world.

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