Job 16:10

10 Men have 1gaped at me with their mouth; they have 2struck me insolently on the cheek; they 3mass themselves together against me.

Job 16:10 Meaning and Commentary

Job 16:10

They have gaped upon me with their mouth
Here Job speaks of the instruments which God suffered to use him ill; and he has respect to his friends who came with open mouth against him, loading him with calumnies and reproaches, laying charges to him he was not conscious of, and treating him with scorn and contempt, which such a gesture is sometimes a token of, ( Lamentations 3:46 ) ( 2:15 ) ; and in which manner also Christ was used by men, on whom the reproach of them that reproached God and his people fell, and who exhibited false charges against him of various sorts; and he was the reproach of men and the contempt of the people, who laughed him to scorn, opened their mouths in derision; they shot out the lip and shook the head, and mocked and scoffed at him; yea, "they gaped upon him with their mouth as a ravening and a roaring lion", ( Psalms 22:6 Psalms 22:7 Psalms 22:13 ) ; to which the allusion is here, when they cried out themselves and called upon others to join them, saying, "Crucify him, crucify him", ( Luke 23:21 ) ( John 19:6 ) :

they have smitten me on the cheek reproachfully;
to be smitten on the cheek is a reproach itself, and is a suffering not very patiently endured. Hence Christ, to teach his followers patience, advised when they were smitten on the one cheek to turn the other, that is, to take the blow patiently; and it is not the smart of the stroke that is so much regarded as the shame of it, the affront given, and the indignity offered; see ( 2 Corinthians 11:20 2 Corinthians 11:21 ) ( Matthew 5:39 ) ; so that the phrase may be taken for reproaching him; and indeed it may be rendered, "they have smitten on the cheek with reproach" F1; they reproached him, which was the same as if they had smitten him on the cheek; they smote him with their tongues, as Jeremiah's enemies smote him, ( Jeremiah 18:18 ) ; they threw the dirt of scandal and calumny at him, and which is the common lot of God's people; and though since they are reproached for Christ's sake, for the Gospel's sake, and for righteousness sake, they should not be disturbed at that; but rather reckon themselves happy, as they are said to be, and bind these reproaches about their necks as chains of gold, and esteem them greater riches than all the treasures of Egypt. This was literally true of Job's antitype, the Messiah, for as it was foretold of him that he should give his cheek to those that plucked off the hair, and they should smite the Judge of Israel with a rod upon his cheek, ( Isaiah 50:6 ) ( Micah 5:1 ) : so this was done unto him by the servants of the high priest in his hall, and by others, ( Matthew 26:67 ) ( John 18:22 ) ;

they have gathered themselves together against me;
Job's friends got together in order to visit him and comfort him, but it proved otherwise, and he viewed it in no other light than as a combination against him: the words may be rendered, "they filled themselves against me" F2; their hearts with wrath and anger, as the Targum; their mouths with reproaches and calumnies, and their eyes with pleasure and delight, and satisfaction at his miseries and afflictions; and so the Vulgate Latin version,

``they are satiated with my punishments;''

though rather this may respect the high spirits they were in, the boldness and even impudence, as Job interpreted it, they showed in their conduct towards him, their hearts being swelled with pride and haughtiness and passion F3; see ( Esther 7:5 ) ( Acts 5:3 ) ; or else their numbers that came against him; so Mr. Broughton renders the words, "they came by full troops upon me"; Job's three friends, being great personages, very probably brought a large retinue and train of servants with them; who, observing their master's conduct, behaved in an indecent manner towards him themselves, to whom he may have respect, ( Job 30:1 ) ; this was verified in Christ his antitype, whom Judas, with a multitude of men, with swords and staves, even with a band of soldiers, came to apprehend in the garden; and when Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and people of Israel, were gathered against him to do what God had determined should be done, ( Matthew 26:46 ) ( John 18:3 ) ( Acts 4:27 Acts 4:28 ) .


F1 (hprxb) "cum opprobrio", Beza, Vatablus, Drusius; so Schmidt, Michaelis, Schultens; "with reproaches", Broughton.
F2 (Nwalmty) "impleverunt sese", De Dieu.
F3 Vid. De Dieu in loc.

Job 16:10 In-Context

8 And he has shriveled me up, which is a witness against me, and my leanness has risen up against me; it testifies to my face.
9 He has torn me in his wrath and hated me; he has gnashed his teeth at me; my adversary sharpens his eyes against me.
10 Men have gaped at me with their mouth; they have struck me insolently on the cheek; they mass themselves together against me.
11 God gives me up to the ungodly and casts me into the hands of the wicked.
12 I was at ease, and he broke me apart; he seized me by the neck and dashed me to pieces; he set me up as his target;

Cross References 3

  • 1. Psalms 22:13
  • 2. Psalms 3:7; Isaiah 50:6; Lamentations 3:30; Micah 5:1; [1 Kings 22:24; Acts 23:2]
  • 3. Psalms 35:15
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.