Job 13:1-28 . JOB'S REPLY TO ZOPHAR CONTINUED.
15. in him--So the margin or keri, reads. But the textual reading or chetib is "not," which agrees best with the context, and other passages wherein he says he has no hope ( Job 6:11 , 7:21 , 10:20 , 19:10 ). "Though He slay me, and I dare no more hope, yet I will maintain," &c., that is, "I desire to vindicate myself before Him," as not a hypocrite [UMBREIT and NOYES].
16. He--rather, "This also already speaks in my behalf (literally, 'for my saving acquittal') for an hypocrite would not wish to come before Him" (as I do) [UMBREIT]. (See last clause of Job 13:15 ).
17. my declaration--namely, that I wish to be permitted to justify myself immediately before God.
with your ears--that is, attentively.
18. ordered--implying a constant preparation for defense in his confidence of innocence.
19. if, &c.--Rather, "Then would I hold my tongue and give up the ghost"; that is, if any one can contend with me and prove me false, I have no more to say. "I will be silent and die." Like our "I would stake my life on it" [UMBREIT].
20. Address to God.
not hide--stand forth boldly to maintain my cause.
22. call--a challenge to the defendant to answer to the charges.
answer--the defense begun.
answer--to the plea of the plaintiff. Expressions from a trial.
23. The catalogue of my sins ought to be great, to judge from the severity with which God ever anew crushes one already bowed down. Would that He would reckon them up! He then would see how much my calamities outnumber them.
sin?--singular, "I am unconscious of a single particular sin, much less many" [UMBREIT].
24. hidest . . . face--a figure from the gloomy impression caused by the sudden clouding over of the sun.
enemy--God treated Job as an enemy who must be robbed of power by ceaseless sufferings ( Job 7:17 Job 7:21 ).
25. ( Leviticus 26:36 , Psalms 1:4 ). Job compares himself to a leaf already fallen, which the storm still chases hither and thither.
break--literally, "shake with (Thy) terrors." Jesus Christ does not "break the bruised reed" ( Isaiah 42:3 , 27:8 ).
26. writest--a judicial phrase, to note down the determined punishment. The sentence of the condemned used to be written down ( Isaiah 10:1 , Jeremiah 22:30 , Psalms 149:9 ) [UMBREIT].
bitter things--bitter punishments.
makest me to possess--or "inherit." In old age he receives possession of the inheritance of sin thoughtlessly acquired in youth. "To inherit sins" is to inherit the punishments inseparably connected with them in Hebrew ideas ( Psalms 25:7 ).
27. stocks--in which the prisoner's feet were made fast until the time of execution ( Jeremiah 20:2 ).
lookest narrowly--as an overseer would watch a prisoner.
print--Either the stocks, or his disease, marked his soles (Hebrew, "roots") as the bastinado would. Better, thou drawest (or diggest) [GESENIUS] a line (or trench) [GESENIUS] round my soles, beyond which I must not move [UMBREIT].