Job 26:1-14 . JOB'S REPLY.
8. in . . . clouds--as if in airy vessels, which, though light, do not burst with the weight of water in them ( Proverbs 30:4 ).
9. Rather, He encompasseth or closeth. God makes the clouds a veil to screen the glory not only of His person, but even of the exterior of His throne from profane eyes. His agency is everywhere, yet He Himself is invisible ( Psalms 18:11 , 104:3 ).
10. Rather, "He hath drawn a circular bound round the waters" ( Proverbs 8:27 , Psalms 104:9 ). The horizon seems a circle. Indication is given of the globular form of the earth.
until the day, &c.--to the confines of light and darkness. When the light falls on our horizon, the other hemisphere is dark. UMBREIT and MAURER translate "He has most perfectly (literally, to perfection) drawn the bound between light and darkness" (compare Genesis 1:4 Genesis 1:6 Genesis 1:9 ): where the bounding of the light from darkness is similarly brought into proximity with the bounding of the waters.
11. pillars--poetically for the mountains which seem to bear up the sky ( Psalms 104:32 ).
astonished--namely, from terror. Personification.
his reproof--( Psalms 104:7 ). The thunder, reverberating from cliff to cliff ( Habakkuk 3:10 , Nahum 1:5 ).
12. divideth--( Psalms 74:13 ). Perhaps at creation ( Genesis 1:9 Genesis 1:10 ). The parallel clause favors UMBREIT, "He stilleth." But the Hebrew means "He moves." Probably such a "moving" is meant as that at the assuaging of the flood by the wind which "God made to pass over" it ( Genesis 8:1 , Psalms 104:7 ).
the proud--rather, "its pride," namely, of the sea ( Job 9:13 ).
13. UMBREIT less simply, "By His breath He maketh the heavens to revive": namely, His wind dissipates the clouds, which obscured the shining stars. And so the next clause in contrast, "His hand doth strangle," that is, obscures the north constellation, the dragon. Pagan astronomy typified the flood trying to destroy the ark by the dragon constellation, about to devour the moon in its eclipsed crescent-shape like a boat ( Job 3:8 , Margin). But better as English Version ( Psalms 33:6 ).
crooked--implying the oblique course, of the stars, or the ecliptic. "Fleeing" or "swift" [UMBREIT] ( Isaiah 27:1 ). This particular constellation is made to represent the splendor of all the stars.
14. parts--Rather, "only the extreme boundaries of," &c., and how faint is the whisper that we hear of Him!
thunder--the entire fulness. In antithesis to "whisper" ( 1 Corinthians 13:9 1 Corinthians 13:10 1 Corinthians 13:12 ).