Dead [things] are formed from under the waters
It is difficult to say what things are here meant; it may be understood of "lifeless" things, as Mr. Broughton renders it; things that never had any life, things inanimate, that never had at least an animal life, though they may have a vegetable one; and so may be interpreted of grains of corn, and which indeed die before they are quickened; to which both Christ and the apostle allude, ( John 12:24 ) ( 1 Corinthians 15:36 ) ; and which, as they cannot grow without water, and their fructification and increase are owing to the earth being plentifully watered with rain, may be said to be formed under the waters; and of these Aben Ezra and Ben Gersom interpret the words; and the latter also makes mention of herbs, plants, and trees in the sea, particularly almug trees, as being probably intended; to which may be added, corals, and other sea plants, formed from under the waters; yea, some make mention of woods and forests there: but the last mentioned writer, seems inclined to think that metals and minerals may be intended; and it is well known that much of gold is taken out of rivers, as also pearls and precious stones; and that iron is taken out of the earth, and brass molten out of stone; and that the several metals and minerals are dug out of mountains and hills, from whence fountains and rivers flow; but as the word used has the signification of something gigantic, it has inclined others to think of sea monsters, as of the great whales which God made in the seas, and the leviathan he has made to play therein:
the inhabitants thereof;
the innumerable company of fishes, both of the larger and lesser sort, which are all formed in and under the waters: but why may not giants themselves be designed, since the word is sometimes used of them, ( Deuteronomy 2:11 ) ( 3:11 ) ; and so the Vulgate Latin and the Septuagint version here render the word, and may refer to the giants that were before the flood, and who were the causes of filling the world with rapine and violence, and so of bringing the flood of waters upon it; in which they perished "with the inhabitants thereof"; or their neighbours; of whom see ( Genesis 6:4 ) ( 7:23 ) ; and the spirits of these being in prison, in hell, as the Apostle Peter says, ( 1 Peter 3:19 1 Peter 3:20 ) ; which is commonly supposed to be under the earth, and so under the waters, in which they perished; they may be represented as in pain and torment, and groaning and trembling under the same, as the word here used is by some thought to signify, and is so rendered F20; though as the word "Rephaim" is often used of dead men, ( Psalms 88:10 ) ( Isaiah 14:9 ) ( Isaiah 26:14 Isaiah 26:19 ) ; it may be understood of them here, and have respect to the formation of them anew, or their resurrection from the dead, when the earth shall cast them forth; and especially of those whose graves are in the sea, and who have been buried in the waters of it, when that shall deliver up the dead that are therein, ( Revelation 20:13 ) ; which will be a wonderful instance of the mighty power of God. The Targumist seems to have a notion of this, or at least refers unto it, paraphrasing the words thus,
``is it possible that the mighty men (or giants) should be created (that is, recreated or regenerated; that is, raised from the dead); seeing they are under the waters, and their armies?''
F20 (wllwxy) "gemunt", V. L. "cruciabuntur", Bolducius; "cruciantur, dolore contremiscunt", Michaelis; "intremiscunt", Schultens. Vid. Windet. de Vita Funct. Stat. p. 90.