Job 5:23

Job 5:23

For thou shalt be in league with the stones of the field
So as to receive no hurt from them, by walking among them, and even barefoot, which was usual in the eastern countries, see ( Psalms 91:12 ) ; or by their being in the field, so as to hinder the increase of them; but on the contrary, even from such fields as were stony ground, a large crop has been produced, and so rather receive benefit by them, as men do from those with whom they are in league; and may therefore likewise signify, that these stones should be useful in being boundaries or fences about their fields, and landmarks in them, which should not be removed: many interpreters take notice of a sense that Pineda gives of these words, and which Cocceius calls an ingenious one, that it refers to a custom in Arabia, which may be called Scopelism, and was this; a man's enemies would lay stones in his field, and these signified, that if any attempted to till and manure those grounds where they were laid, some evil would befall him by the means of those persons who laid the stones there; and which stones were thought to be ominous and formidable; something like it is in ( 2 Kings 3:19 2 Kings 3:25 ) ; and so the sense is, that a good man had nothing to fear from such stones, he being in league with them; and this malicious practice is thought to have had its origin in Arabia Petraea F9; but the first sense seems best:

and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with thee;
a covenant being made with them, as in ( Hosea 2:18 ) ; meaning either literally, the beasts of the field; and these either the same as before, wild beasts, or beasts of prey; or rather, in distinction from them, tame beasts, as cows and horses, which should be so far from doing any harm, as sometimes is done by these tame creatures, that they should be very serviceable in tilling fields and drawing carriages, and the like: or else figuratively, men comparable to such creatures; and so the sense may be, that when a man's ways please the Lord, and he behaves according to his mind and will, particularly under afflictions, even his enemies are made to be at peace with him; ( Proverbs 16:7 ) ; the Targum interprets this of the Canaanites, comparable to the beasts of the field.


FOOTNOTES:

F9 See Egmont and Heyman's Travels, vol. 2. p. 156.
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