Verse 5. They are not in trouble as other men. The prosperous wicked escape the killing toils which afflict the mass of mankind; their bread comes to them without care, their wine without stint. They have no need to enquire, "Whence shall we get bread for our children, or raiment for our little ones?" Ordinary domestic and personal troubles do not appear to molest them.
Neither are they plagued like other men. Fierce trials do not arise to assail them: they smart not under the divine rod. While many saints are both poor and afflicted, the prosperous sinner is neither. He is worse than other men, and yet he is better off; he ploughs least, and yet has the most fodder. He deserves the hottest hell, and yet has the warmest nest. All this is clear to the eyes of faith, which unriddles the riddle; but to the bleared eye of sense it seems an enigma indeed. They are to have nothing hereafter, let them have what they can here; they, after all, only possess what is of secondary value, and their possessing it is meant to teach us to set little store by transient things. If earthly good were of much value, the Lord would not give so large a measure of it to those who have least of his love.
EXPLANATORY NOTES AND QUAINT SAYINGS
Verse 5. They are not in the trouble of men, for God has given them over to the desire of their own hearts, that they who are filthy may be filthy still: like a sick man, are they, to whom a wise physician forbids nothing, since the disease is incurable. Gerhohus.
Verse 5. Other men. Hebrew, ~da Adam: the whole human race. A. R. Fausset.
HINTS FOR PASTORS AND LAYPERSONS
Verse 5. The bastard's portion contrasted with that of the true son.