When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaints;
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Job 7:13-14. My couch shall ease my complaint — By giving me sweet and quiet sleep, which may take off my sense of pain for that time. Then thou scarest me with dreams — With sad and frightful dreams. And terrifiest me with visions — With horrid apparitions; so that I am afraid to go to sleep, and my remedy proves as bad as my disease. This contributed no little to render the night so unwelcome and wearisome to him. How easily can God, when he pleases, meet us with terror there where we promised ourselves ease and repose. Nay, he can make us a terror to ourselves; and, as we have often contracted guilt, by the rovings of an unsanctified fancy, he can likewise, by the power of our imagination, create us a great deal of grief, and so make that our punishment which has often been our sin. Job’s dreams might probably arise, in part, from his distemper, but, no doubt, Satan also had a hand in them. We have reason to pray, that our dreams may neither defile nor disquiet us; neither tempt us to sin, nor torment us with fear; that he who keeps Israel, who neither slumbers nor sleeps, would keep us when we slumber and sleep. And we ought to bless God if we lie down and our sleep is sweet, and we are not thus scared.
Am I a sea—regarded in Old Testament poetry as a violent rebel against God, the Lord of nature, who therefore curbs his violence (Jer 5:22).
or a whale—or some other sea monster (Isa 27:1), that Thou needest thus to watch and curb me? The Egyptians watched the crocodile most carefully to prevent its doing mischief.
my couch shall ease my complaint; he concluded, that by lying down upon his couch, and falling asleep, it would give some ease of body and mind; that his body would, at least, for some time be free from pain, and his mind composed, and should cease from complaining for a while; which interval would be a relief to him, and of considerable service. Some render it, "my couch shall burn" (h); be all on fire, and torture me instead of giving ease; and so may have respect to his burning ulcers.When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaints;
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)13, 14. Further description of the plagues employed to subdue him.
ease my complaint] Complaint always means complaining, not malady; ch. Job 9:27, Job 10:1, Job 21:4, Job 23:2. When he looks for sleep
That knits up the ravelled sleeve of care,
Balm of hurt minds,
instead of finding it he is scared with dreams and terrified through visions. Such distressing dreams and terrors in sleep are said to be one of the symptoms of Elephantiasis.Verses 13, 14. - When I say, My bed shall comfort me, my couch shall ease my complaint. Sometimes, notwithstanding his many "wearisome nights" (ver. 5), Job would entertain a hope of a few hours' rest and tranquillity, as, wearied and exhausted, he sought his couch, and laid himself down upon it, but only to be disappointed. Then thou scarest me with dreams, and terrifiest me through visions. Unpleasant dreams are said to be a symptom, or at any rate a frequent concomitant, of elephantiasis; but Job seems to speak of something worse than these. Horrible visions came upon him, which he believed to be sent directly from the Almighty, and which effectually disturbed his rest, making night hideous. Probably this was one of the modes in which Satan was permitted to try and test him.
That my eye will never again look on prosperity.
8 The eye that looketh upon me seeth me no more;
Thine eyes look for me, - I am no more!
9 The clouds are vanished and passed away,
So he that goeth down to Shel cometh not up.
10 He returneth no more to his house,
And his place knoweth him no more.
11 Therefore I will not curb my mouth;
I will speak in the anguish of my spirit;
I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.
We see good, i.e., prosperity and joy, only in the present life. It ends with death. שׁוּב with ל infin. is a synonym of הוסיף, Job 20:9. No eye (עין femin.) which now sees me (prop. eye of my seer, as Genesis 16:13, comp. Job 20:7; Psalm 31:12, for ראני, Isaiah 29:15, or ראני, Isaiah 47:10; according to another reading, ראי: no eye of seeing, i.e., no eye with the power of seeing, from ראי, vision) sees me again, even if thy eyes should be directed towards me to help me; my life is gone, so that I can no more be the subject of help. For from Shel there is no return, no resurrection (comp. Psalm 103:16 for the expression); therefore will I at least give free course to my thoughts and feelings (comp. Psalm 77:4; Isaiah 38:15, for the expression). The גּם, Job 7:11, is the so-called גם talionis; the parallels cited by Michalis are to the point, Ezekiel 16:43; Malachi 2:9; Psalm 52:7. Here we first meet with the name of the lower world; and in the book of Job we learn the ancient Israelitish conception of it more exactly than anywhere else. We have here only to do with the name in connection with the grammatical exposition. שׁאול (usually gen. fem.) is now almost universally derived from שׁאל equals שׁעל, to be hollow, to be deepened; and aptly so, for they imagined the Sheôl as under ground, as Numbers 16:30, Numbers 16:33 alone shows, on which account even here, as from Genesis 37:35 onwards, שׁאולה ירד is everywhere used. It is, however, open to question whether this derivation is correct: at least passages like Isaiah 5:14; Habakkuk 2:5; Proverbs 30:15., show that in the later usage of the language, שׁאל, to demand, was thought of in connection with it; derived from which Sheôl signifies (1) the appointed inevitable and inexorable demanding of everything earthly (an infinitive noun like אלוהּ, פּקוד); (2) conceived of as space, the place of shadowy duration whither everything on earth is demanded; (3) conceived of according to its nature, the divinely appointed fury which gathers in and engulfs everything on the earth. Job knows nothing of a demanding back, a redemption from Sheôl.
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