|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:12-25 This is a noble discourse of Job concerning the wisdom, power, and sovereignty of God, in ordering all the affairs of the children of men, according to the counsel of His own will, which none can resist. It were well if wise and good men, who differ about lesser things, would see how it is for their honour and comfort, and the good of others, to dwell most upon the great things in which they agree. Here are no complaints, or reflections. He gives many instances of God's powerful management of the children of men, overruling all their counsels, and overcoming all their oppositions. Having all strength and wisdom, God knows how to make use, even of those who are foolish and bad; otherwise there is so little wisdom and so little honesty in the world, that all had been in confusion and ruin long ago. These important truths were suited to convince the disputants that they were out of their depth in attempting to assign the Lord's reasons for afflicting Job; his ways are unsearchable, and his judgments past finding out. Let us remark what beautiful illustrations there are in the word of God, confirming his sovereignty, and wisdom in that sovereignty: but the highest and infinitely the most important is, that the Lord Jesus was crucified by the malice of the Jews; and who but the Lord could have known that this one event was the salvation of the world?
Verse 17. - He leadeth counsellors away spoiled. The wise of the earth cannot resist or escape him; he frustrates their designs and overthrows them, and, as it were, leads them away captive. And maketh the judges fools; rather, and judges maketh he fools. There is no article, and no particular judges are referred to (comp. Isaiah 44:25).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He leadeth counsellors away spoiled,.... Such who have the greatest share of knowledge and wisdom in civil things, and are capable of giving advice to others, and are very useful in commonwealths, in cities, towns, and neighbourhoods; wherefore it is a judgment on a people when such are removed, Isaiah 3:3; these God can spoil at once of all their wisdom and knowledge, and render them unfit to give advice and counsel to others; or he can confound their schemes, disappoint their devices, carry their counsel headlong, and make it of none effect, and so spoil them of their ends and views, and of their fame, credit, and reputation:
and maketh the judges fools; men of great parts, abilities, and capacities, whereby they are qualified to sit upon the bench, preside in courts of judicature, and judge in all matters of controversy that come before them; and it is a happiness to a country to have such persons, as it is a judgment to have them removed, see Isaiah 3:2; yet God can take away the wisdom of such men, deprive them of their natural abilities, and so infatuate them, that they shall not be able to understand a cause, but pass a foolish sentence, to their own shame and disgrace, as well as to the injury of others; see Isaiah 40:23.
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