|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
19:8-22 How doleful are Job's complaints! What is the fire of hell but the wrath of God! Seared consciences will feel it hereafter, but do not fear it now: enlightened consciences fear it now, but shall not feel it hereafter. It is a very common mistake to think that those whom God afflicts he treats as his enemies. Every creature is that to us which God makes it to be; yet this does not excuse Job's relations and friends. How uncertain is the friendship of men! but if God be our Friend, he will not fail us in time of need. What little reason we have to indulge the body, which, after all our care, is consumed by diseases it has in itself. Job recommends himself to the compassion of his friends, and justly blames their harshness. It is very distressing to one who loves God, to be bereaved at once of outward comfort and of inward consolation; yet if this, and more, come upon a believer, it does not weaken the proof of his being a child of God and heir of glory.
Verse 19. - All my inward friends abhorred me; literally, all the men of my counsel; i.e. all those whom I was accustomed to consult, and whose advice I was wont to take, in any difficulty, by keeping aloof, have shown their abhorrence of me. And they whom I loved are turned against me (comp. Psalm 41:9; Psalm 55:12-14: Jeremiah 20:10). The saints of God in all ages, and however differently circumstanced, are assailed by almost the same trials and temptations. Whether it be Job, or David, or Jeremiah, or One greater than any of them, the desertion and unkindness of their nearest and dearest, as the bitterest of all sufferings, is almost sure to be included in their cup, which they must drink to the dregs, if they are to experience to the full "the precious uses of adversity."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
All my inward friends abhorred me,.... Or "the men of my secret" (m); who were so very familiar with him, that he imparted the secrets of his heart, and the most private affairs of life, unto them, placing so much confidence in them, and treating them as his bosom friends; for this is always reckoned a great instance of friendship, Job 15:15; and yet their minds were set against him; their affections were alienated from him; they abhorred the sight of him, and declined all conversation with him, even all of them; not one showed respect unto him:
and they whom I loved; or "this whom I loved" (n); this and that and the other particular friend, that he loved more than others: though all men are to be loved as the creatures of God, and as fellow creatures, and especially good men, even all the saints; yet there are some that engross a greater share of love than others, among natural and spiritual relations; as Joseph was more loved by his father than the rest of his children; and, even by our Lord, John was loved more than the other disciples: and so Job, he had some particular friends that he loved above others; and yet these not only turned away from him in the time of his adversity, and turned their backs on him, and would have nothing to say to him for his comfort, nor afford him any relief of any kind in his distress, but
are turned against men; were turned against him, and became his enemies; and, as David says of some that he had a love for, for my love, "they are my adversaries", Psalm 109:4.
(m) "viri secreti mei", Montanus; "homines secreti mei", Cocceius, Schmidt; "viri arcani mei", Beza, Mercerus; "homines arcani mei consilii", Michaelis. (n) "et quem", V. L. "et hie seu is quem", Mercerus, Drusius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
19. inward—confidential; literally, "men of my secret"—to whom I entrusted my most intimate confidence.
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