Job 41:30
Sharp stones are under him: he spreads sharp pointed things on the mire.
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(30) He spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire.—Some render, “He spreadeth, as it were, a threshing-wain upon the mire.” The statement is, that he not only can lie without inconvenience upon sharp-pointed things, but his own body presents a sharp surface to the mud he lies on.

Job 41:30. Sharp stones — חדודי חרשׂ, chadudee chares, acumina testæ, vel testacea, sharp points of potsherds, are under him — He can repose himself on rocks, or stones, whose edges, or points, are sharp, like those of shells, or broken potsherds; and yet he is not sensible of them, says R. Levi. and Ab. Ezra. His skin is so hard and impenetrable that they make no impression upon him, but are as easy to him as a bed of clay. He spreadeth sharp pointed things: &c. — Hebrew, חרוצ, charutz, acutum, any thing which cuts, or makes an incision. The word also means, and is rendered by Bochart, tribula, an instrument used in thrashing corn, a kind of sledge, furnished with sharp iron wheels, which was drawn over the straw by oxen, and at the same time thrashed out the corn, and cut the straw into small pieces, reducing it to chaff. Heath, therefore, translates the verse, His nether parts are like sharp potsherds: he dasheth himself on the mud like a thrashing-cart.41:1-34 Concerning Leviathan. - The description of the Leviathan, is yet further to convince Job of his own weakness, and of God's almighty power. Whether this Leviathan be a whale or a crocodile, is disputed. The Lord, having showed Job how unable he was to deal with the Leviathan, sets forth his own power in that mighty creature. If such language describes the terrible force of Leviathan, what words can express the power of God's wrath? Under a humbling sense of our own vileness, let us revere the Divine Majesty; take and fill our allotted place, cease from our own wisdom, and give all glory to our gracious God and Saviour. Remembering from whom every good gift cometh, and for what end it was given, let us walk humbly with the Lord.Sharp stones are under him - Margin, as in Hebrew, "pieces of pot sherd." The Hebrew word (חדוד chaddûd), means "sharp, pointed"; and the phrase used here means "the sharp points of a potsherd," or broken pieces of earthenware. The reference is, undoubtedly, to the scales of the animal, which were rough and pointed, like the broken pieces of earthenware. This description would not agree with the whale, and indeed will accord with no other animal so well as with the crocodile. The meaning is, that the under parts of his body, with which he rests upon the mire, are made up of sharp, pointed things, like broken pottery.

He spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire - That is, when he rests or stretches himself on the mud or slime of the bank of the river. The word used here and rendered "sharp pointed things" (חרוץ chârûts) means properly something "cut in;" then something sharpened or pointed; and is used to denote "a threshing sledge;" see this instrument described in Isaiah 28:27-28, note; Isaiah 41:15, note. It is not certain, however, that there is any allusion here to that instrument. It is rather to anything that is rough or pointed, and refers to the lower part of the animal as having this character. The Vulgate renders this, "Beneath him are the rays of the sun, and he reposeth on gold as on clay." Dr. Harris, Dr. Good, and Prof. Lee, suppose it refers to what the animal lies on, meaning that he lies on splinters of rock and broken stone with as much readiness and ease as if it were clay. But the above seems to me to be the true interpretation. It is that of Gesenius, Rosenmuller, and Umbreit. Grotius understands it as meaning that the weapons thrown at him lie around him like broken pieces of pottery.

30. stones—rather, "potsherds," that is, the sharp and pointed scales on the belly, like broken pieces of pottery.

sharp-pointed things—rather, "a threshing instrument," but not on the fruits of the earth, but "on the mire"; irony. When he lies on the mire, he leaves the marks of his scales so imprinted on it, that one might fancy a threshing instrument with its sharp teeth had been drawn over it (Isa 28:27).

According to this translation the sense is, his skin is so hard and impenetrable, that the sharpest stones are as easy to him as the mire, and make no more impression upon him. But the words are and may be otherwise rendered, as continuing the former sense, They (to wit, the arrows, darts, or stones cast at him) are or fall

under him, like (which particle is oft understood) sharp shreds, or fragments of stones;

he spreadeth sharp pointed things (to wit, the pieces of swords or darts which were flung at him, and broken upon him) upon the mire. The fragments of broken weapons lie as thick at the bottom of the water in the place of the fight as little stones do in the mire, or as they do in a field after some fierce and furious battle. Or thus, With him (or for him, i.e. for his defence) are sharp stones; he spreadeth himself like an arrow or threshing instrument (which is filled and fortified with iron)

in the mire or mud in the bottom of the water: so he doth not describe his resting-place, but rather his back, which he not unfitly compares to sharp stones or threshing instruments, because the darts or stones east at him pierce no more into him than they would do into them if they were thrown at them. Sharp stones are under him,.... And yet give him no pain nor uneasiness;

he spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire; and makes his bed of them and lies upon them; as sharp stones, as before, shells of fishes, broken pieces of darts, arrows, and javelins thrown at him, which fall around him: this does not so well agree with the crocodile, the skin of whose belly is soft and thin; wherefore dolphins plunge under it and cut it with a thorn, as Pliny (h) relates, or with spiny fins (i); but with the whale, which lies among hard rocks and sharp stones, and large cutting pieces of ice, as in the northern seas.

(h) Nat. Hist. l. 8. c. 25. (i) Sandys's Travels, l. 2. p. 78.

Sharp stones {i} are under him: he spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire.

(i) His skin is so hard that he lies with a great ease on the stones as in the mud.

30. The impression left where he has lien.

Under him he hath sharp potsherds,

He spreadeth a threshing-sledge upon the mire.

The scales of the belly, though smoother than those on the back, still are sharp, particularly those under the tail, and leave an impression on the mire where he has lien as if a sharp threshing-sledge with teeth had stood on it or gone over it (Isaiah 41:15).Verse 30. - Sharp stones are under him; rather, jagged potsherds are under him; i.e. "his belly is covered with jagged scales" - a thing which is true of the crocodile, but scarcely of any other beast. He spreadeth sharp pointed things (rather, a threshing-wain, or a corn-drag) upon the mire. He leaves on the mud on which he has lain, i.e. an impression as of an Oriental threshing-wain, or corn-drag, which is "a thick plank of timber, stuck full on the under side, of flints or hard cutting stones arranged in the form of the palate or rough tongue of a cow" (Sir C. Fellows, 'Asia Minor,' p. 70). The mud-banks on which crocodiles have been lying are said to be scored all over with such impressions. 22 Great strength resteth upon his neck,

And despair danceth hence before him.

23 The flanks of his flesh are thickly set,

Fitting tightly to him, immoveable.

24 His heart is firm like stone,

And firm like the nether millstone.

25 The mighty are afraid of his rising up;

From alarm they miss their aim.

Overpowering strength lodges on its neck, i.e., has its abiding place there, and before it despair, prop. melting away, dissolution (דּאבה from דּאב, Arab. ḏ'b equals דּוּב Hiph., Arab. ḍ'b II, to bring into a loose condition, synon. חמס), dances hence, i.e., spring up and away (ידוּץ, Arab. jadisu, to run away), i.e., it spreads before it a despondency which produces terror, and deprives of strength. Even the pendulous fleshy parts (מפּלי), especially of its belly, hang close together, דבקוּ, i.e., they are not flabby, but fit to it, like a metal casting, without moving, for the skin is very thick and covered with thick scales; and because the digestive apparatus of the animal occupies but little space, and the scales of the back are continued towards the belly, the tender parts appear smaller, narrower, and closer together than in other animals. יצוּק here is not, as Job 27:2; Job 29:6, the fut. of צוּק, but the part. of יצק, as also Job 41:24: its heart is firm and obdurate, as though it were of cast brass, hard as stone, and in fact as the nether millstone (פלח from פלח, falacha, to split, crush in pieces), which, because it has to bear the weight and friction of the upper, must be particularly hard. It is not intended of actual stone-like hardness, but only of its indomitable spirit and great tenacity of life: the activity of its heart is not so easily disturbed, and even fatal wounds do not so quickly bring it to a stand. משּׂמו from שׂת equals שׂאת equals שׂאת), primary form שׂאתּ, is better understood in the active sense: afraid of its rising, than the passive: of its exaltedness. אילים (according to another reading אלים) is not, with Ew., to be derived from איל (Arab. ı̂jal), a ram; but אילים Exodus 15:15; Ezekiel 17:13 (comp. גּירים 2 Chronicles 2:16, נירי 2 Samuel 22:29), אלים Ezekiel 31:11; Ezekiel 32:21, and אוּלים Cheth. 2 Kings 24:15, are only alternating forms and modes of writing of the participial adject., derived from אוּל (איל) first of all in the primary form awil (as גּר equals gawir). The signif. assigned to the verb אול: to be thick equals fleshy, which is said then to go over into the signif. to be stupid and strong (Ges. Handwrterb.), rests upon a misconception: âla is said of fluids "to become thick," because they are condensed, since they go back, i.e., sink in or settle (Ges. correctly in Thes.: notio crassitiei a retrocendendo). The verb âla, ja'ûlu, unites in itself the significations to go backward, to be forward, and to rule; the last two: anteriorem and superiorem esse, probably belong together, and אל signifies, therefore, a possessor of power, who is before and over others. התחטּא, Job 41:25, has the signif., which does not otherwise occur, to miss the mark (from חטא, Arab. chaṭiya, to miss, opp. Arab. ṣâb, to hit the mark), viz., (which is most natural where אילים is the subject spoken of) since they had designed the slaughter and capture of the monster. שׁברים is intended subjectively, as תּבירא equals פּחד Exodus 15:16, Targ. II, and also as the Arab. thubûr, employed more in reference to the mind, can be used of pain.

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