Job 41:9
Behold, the hope of him is in vain: shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him?
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(9) Behold the hope of him is in vaini.e., the hope of the rash man who would venture to attack him: at the sight of him, i.e., the infuriated crocodile.

Job 41:9-10. Behold, the hope of him is in vain — That is, the hope of taking, or conquering him. Shall not one be cast down, even at the sight of him? — Not only the fight, but the sight of him is most frightful. Such is even the sight of the whale to mariners, who fear the overturning of their vessel. And such is the sight of the crocodile, by which alone some have been frightened out of their senses. None is so fierce — Hebrew, אכזר, achzer, so resolute, that dare stir him up — When he sleepeth or is quiet. This alludes to a custom of this creature, when sated with fish, to come on shore and sleep among the reeds. Who then is able to stand before me? — To contend with me his Creator, (as thou Job dost,) when one of my creatures is too hard for him?

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.Behold, the hope of him is in vain - That is, the hope of taking him is vain.

Shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him? - So formidable is his appearance, that the courage of him who would attack him is daunted, and his resolution fails. This agrees well also with the crocodile. There is perhaps scarcely any animal whose appearance would be more likely to deter one from attacking him.

9. the hope—of taking him.

cast down—with fear "at the (mere) sight of him."

The hope of him; either,

1. Of the fish, i.e. the hope of taking or conquering him. Or rather,

2. Of the man who laid hands upon him, as hoping to take him by force, but in vain.

Shall not; the prefix he being put for halo, as it is ofttimes in the Hebrew text, as Genesis 27:36 1 Samuel 2:28 Jeremiah 3:6 Jeremiah 31:20 Ezekiel 20:30.

Even at the sight of him; not only the fight, but the very sight of him is most frightful. Such is the sight of the whale to mariners, who fear the overturning of their vessel. And such is the sight of the crocodile, by which alone some have been affrighted out of their wits.

Behold, the hope of him is in vain,.... Of getting the mastery over him, or of taking him; and yet both crocodiles and whales have been taken; nor is the taking of them to be despaired of; but it seems the "orca", or the whale with many teeth, has never been taken and killed (o);

shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him? the sight of a whale is terrible to mariners, lest their ships should be overturned by it; and some have been so frightened at the sight of a crocodile as to lose their senses: and we read of one that was greatly terrified at seeing the shadow of one; and the creature before mentioned is supposed to be much more terrible (p).

(o) Vid. Scheuchzer. Physic. Sacr. vol. 4. p. 846. (p) Scheuchzer. ib.

Behold, {p} the hope of him is in vain: shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him?

(p) That is, that trusts to take him.

9. the hope of him is in vain] Rather, behold, one’s hope is belied; lit. his hope. The hope of the assailant to overcome Leviathan is disappointed.

Verse 9. - Behold, the hope of him is in vain; i.e. the hope of capturing or killing him. Shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him? The very sight of the savage and invulnerable animal is enough to make a man fall to the ground with fear. Job 41:9 6 Do fishermen trade with him,

Do they divide him among the Canaanites?

7 Canst thou fill his skin with darts,

And his head with fish-spears?

8 Only lay thy hand upon him

Remember the battle, thou wilt not do it again!

9 Behold, every hope becometh disappointment:

Is not one cast down even at the sight of him?

The fishermen form a guild (Arab. ṣunf, sunf), the associated members of which are called חבּרים (distinct from חברים). On כּרה על, vid., on Job 6:27. "When I came to the towns of the coast," says R. Akiba, b. Rosch ha-Schana, 26b, "they called selling, which we call מכירה, כירה, there," according to which, then, Genesis 50:5 is understood, as by the Syriac; the word is Sanscrito-Semitic, Sanscr. kri, Persic chirı̂den (Jesurun, p. 178). lxx ἐνσιτούνται, according to 2 Kings 6:23, to which, however, עליו is not suitable. כּנענים are Phoenicians; and then, because they were the merchant race of the ancient world, directly traders or merchants. The meaning of the question is, whether one sells the crocodile among them, perhaps halved, or in general divided up. Further, Job 41:7 : whether one can kill it בּשׂכּות, with pointed missiles (Arab. shauke, a thorn, sting, dart), or with fish-spears (צלצל, so called from its whizzing, צלל, ). In Job 41:8 the accentuation is the right indication: only seize upon him - remember the battle, i.e., thou wilt be obliged to remember it, and thou wilt have no wish to repeat it. זכר .ti t is a so-called imperat. consec.: if thou doest it, thou wilt ... , Ges. 130, 2. תּוסף is the pausal form of תּוסף (once ͂, Proverbs 30:6), of which it is the original form.

The suff. of תּוהלתּו refers to the assailant, not objectively to the beast (the hope which he indulges concerning it). נכזבה, Job 41:9, is 3 praet., like נאלמה, Isaiah 53:7 (where also the participial accenting as Milra, occurs in Codd.); Frst's Concord. treats it as part., but the participial form נקטלה, to be assumed in connection with it, along with נקטלה and נקטלת, does not exist. הגם, Job 41:9, is, according to the sense, equivalent to הלא גם, vid., on Job 20:4. מראיו (according to Ges., Ew., and Olsh., sing., with the plural suff., without a plur. meaning, which is natural in connection with the primary form מראי; or what is more probable, from the plur. מראים with a sing. meaning, as פּנים) refers to the crocodile, and יטּל (according to a more accredited reading, יטּל equals יוּטל) to the hunter to whom it is visible.

What is said in Job 41:6 is perfectly true; although the crocodile was held sacred in some parts of Egypt, in Elephantine and Apollonopolis, on the contrary, it was salted and eaten as food. Moreover, that there is a small species of crocodile, with which children can play, does not militate against Job 41:5. Everywhere here it is the creature in its primitive strength and vigour that is spoken of. But if they also knew how to catch it in very early times, by fastening a bait, perhaps a duck, on a barb with a line attached, and drew the animal to land, where they put an end to its life with a lance-thrust in the neck (Uhlemann, Thoth, S. 241): this was angling on the largest scale, as is not meant in Job 41:1. If, on the other hand, in very early times they harpooned the crocodile, this would certainly be more difficult of reconcilement with v. 31, than that mode of catching it by means of a fishing-hook of the greatest calibre with Job 41:1. But harpooning is generally only of use when the animal can be hit between the neck and head, or in the flank; and it is very questionable whether, in the ancient times, when the race was without doubt of an unmanageable size, that has now died out, the crocodile hunt (Job 7:12) was effected with harpoons. On the whole subject we have too little information for distinguishing between the different periods. So far as the questions of Jehovah have reference to man's relation to the two monsters, they concern the men of the present, and are shaped according to the measure of power which they have attained over nature. The strophe which follows shows what Jehovah intends by these questions.

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