Job 7:2

2 Like a slave longing for the evening shadows, or a hired laborer waiting to be paid,

Job 7:2 in Other Translations

2 As a servant earnestly desireth the shadow, and as an hireling looketh for the reward of his work:
2 Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like a hired hand who looks for his wages,
2 like a worker who longs for the shade, like a servant waiting to be paid.
2 Like field hands longing for quitting time and working stiffs with nothing to hope for but payday,
2 Like a slave he longs for shade; like a hired man he waits for his pay.

Job 7:2 Meaning and Commentary

Job 7:2

As a servant earnestly desireth the shadow
Either the shadow of some great rock, tree, or hedge, or any shady place to shelter him from the heat of the sun in the middle of the day, which in those eastern countries is hot and scorching; and very burdensome and fatiguing it is for servants and labourers to work in fields and vineyards, or in keeping herds and flocks in such countries, and at such a time of the day; to which the allusion is in ( Song of Solomon 1:7 ) ( Isaiah 25:4 ) ( 32:2 ) ( Matthew 20:12 ) . Wherefore they "gape" for, or "pant" after some shady place for refreshment, as the word F14 used signifies; or for the shadow of the evening, or the sun setting, when the longest shadow is cast, ( Jeremiah 6:4 ) ; and when the work of a servant is ended, and he retires to his house for refreshment and rest: and since now such a shadow in either sense is desirable, and not unlawful to wish for, Job suggests it ought not to be charged as a crime in him, that he should importunately desire to be in the shadow of death, or in the grave, where the weary are at rest; or to have the night come on him, when he should cease from all his toil and labour, sorrows and pains:

and as an hireling looketh for [the reward of] his work;
or "for his work" F15; either for new work, what was set him being done, or rather for the finishing of it, that he might have rest from it; or for the reward, the hire due to him upon its being done; so Job intimates he desired death with the same view, that he might cease from his works, which should follow him, and when he should have the reward of the inheritance, not in a way of debt, but of grace: nor indeed is it sinful to look or have respect unto the recompence of reward, in order to engage to go through service more cheerfully, or to endure sufferings more patiently, see ( Hebrews 11:26 ) ; for though the hireling is an emblem of a self-righteous person, that works for life, and expects it as the reward of his work, and of false teachers and bad shepherds, that take the care of the flock for filthy lucre's sake, see ( Luke 15:19 ) ( John 10:12 ) ; yet hiring is sometimes used, in a good sense, of good men, that are hired and allured by gracious promises and divine encouragements to labour in the Lord's vineyard, and may expect their reward; see ( Matthew 20:1 Matthew 20:2 Matthew 20:8 ) .


F14 (Pavy) "anhelabit", Montanus, Bolducius; "anhelat", Beza, Tigurine version, Piscator, Cocceius, Schmidt, Schultens.
F15 (wlep) "opus suum", Beza Montanus, Bolducius, Schmidt, Schultens.

Job 7:2 In-Context

1 “Do not mortals have hard service on earth? Are not their days like those of hired laborers?
2 Like a slave longing for the evening shadows, or a hired laborer waiting to be paid,
3 so I have been allotted months of futility, and nights of misery have been assigned to me.
4 When I lie down I think, ‘How long before I get up?’ The night drags on, and I toss and turn until dawn.
5 My body is clothed with worms and scabs, my skin is broken and festering.

Cross References 2

  • 1. Job 14:1; Ecclesiastes 2:23
  • 2. S Leviticus 19:13; S Job 14:6
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