|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
15:17-35 Eliphaz maintains that the wicked are certainly miserable: whence he would infer, that the miserable are certainly wicked, and therefore Job was so. But because many of God's people have prospered in this world, it does not therefore follow that those who are crossed and made poor, as Job, are not God's people. Eliphaz shows also that wicked people, particularly oppressors, are subject to continual terror, live very uncomfortably, and perish very miserably. Will the prosperity of presumptuous sinners end miserably as here described? Then let the mischiefs which befal others, be our warnings. Though no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous, nevertheless, afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruits of righteousness to them that are exercised thereby. No calamity, no trouble, however heavy, however severe, can rob a follower of the Lord of his favour. What shall separate him from the love of Christ?
Verse 23. - He wandereth abroad for bread, saying, Where is it? This, again, might appropriately have been said of Cain, who was "a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth" (Genesis 4:14), and may at times have had difficulty in procuring his daily bread. At any rate, it is the frequent experience of the wicked who lose their ill-gotten gains, and are brought down to abject poverty, and actual want of the necessaries of life. "He wanders abroad to be the food of vultures" is a translation of the passage suggested by some moderns (as Merx), and has the support of the Septuagint, κατατέτακται εῖς σῖτα ψυψίν. But it requires a slight change in the pointing. He knoweth that the day of darkness is nigh at hand. "The day of darkness" is probably the day of his decease: this he "knows," or at any rate, surmises, to be near.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He wandereth abroad for bread,.... Either as a plunderer and robber, he roves about to increase his worldly power and substance; or rather, being reduced to poverty, wanders about from place to place, from door to door, to beg his bread; which is a curse imprecated on the posterity of wicked men, Psalm 109:10;
saying, where is it? where is bread to be had? where shall I go for it? where lives a liberal man that will give it freely and generously? by this question it seems as if it was difficult for such a man to get his bread by begging; he having been cruel and oppressive to others, unkind and ungenerous in his time of prosperity, now finds but few that care to relieve him; and indeed a man that has not shown mercy to the indigent, when in his power to have relieved them, cannot expect mercy will be shown to him; this he does, wanders about, seeking food, "wheresoever he is" (w):
he knoweth that the day of darkness is ready at his hand; either that a day of affliction and adversity is coming upon him, perceiving his affairs to grow worse and worse, or to be immediately and already on him, which obliges him to wander about for bread; or that the day of death is at hand, which he is made sensible of by one symptom or another; or rather it may be the day of everlasting darkness in hell, the wrath of God to the uttermost he has deserved; he finds the day of judgment is at hand, and the Judge at the door, and in a short time he must receive the reward of eternal vengeance for the wicked deeds he has done; for so the words may be rendered, "that the day of darkness is prepared by his hand" (x); by the evil works his hand has wrought, and so has treasured up to himself wrath against the day of wrath, and righteous judgment of God.
(w) So Noldius in Ebr. Concord. Part. p. 87. (x) "suis factis", Tigurine version; "per manum suam", Schmidt.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. Wandereth in anxious search for bread. Famine in Old Testament depicts sore need (Isa 5:13). Contrast the pious man's lot (Job 5:20-22).
knoweth—has the firm conviction. Contrast the same word applied to the pious (Job 5:24, 25).
ready at his hand—an Arabic phrase to denote a thing's complete readiness and full presence, as if in the hand.
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