|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
23:1-7 Job appeals from his friends to the just judgement of God. He wants to have his cause tried quickly. Blessed be God, we may know where to find him. He is in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself; and upon a mercy-seat, waiting to be gracious. Thither the sinner may go; and there the believer may order his cause before Him, with arguments taken from his promises, his covenant, and his glory. A patient waiting for death and judgment is our wisdom and duty, and it cannot be without a holy fear and trembling. A passionate wishing for death or judgement is our sin and folly, and ill becomes us, as it did Job.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Even today is my complaint bitter,.... Job's afflictions were continued on him long; he was made to possess months of vanity; and, as he had been complaining ever since they were upon him, he still continued to complain to that day, "even" after all the comforts his friends pretended to administer to him, as Jarchi observes: his complaints were concerning his afflictions, and his friends' ill usage of him under them; not of injustice in God in afflicting him, though he thought he dealt severely with him; but of the greatness of his afflictions, they being intolerable, and his strength unequal to them, and therefore death was more eligible to him than life; and he complained of God's hiding his face from him, and not hearing him, nor showing him wherefore he contended with him, nor admitting an hearing of his cause before him: and this complaint of his was "bitter": the things he complained of were such, bitter afflictions, like the waters of Marah the Israelites could not drink of, Exodus 15:23; there was a great deal of wormwood and gall in his affliction and misery; and it was in a bitter way, in the bitterness of his soul, he made his complaint; and, what made his case still worse, he could not utter any complaint, so much as a sigh or a groan, but it was reckoned "provocation", or "stubbornness and rebellion", by his friends; so some render the word (x), as Mr. Broughton does, "this day my sighing is holden a rebellion": there is indeed a great deal of rebellion oftentimes in the hearts, words and actions, conduct and behaviour, even of good men under afflictions, as were in the Israelites in the wilderness; and a difficult thing it is to complain without being guilty of it; though complaints may be without it, yet repinings and murmurings are always attended with it:
and my stroke is heavier than my groaning; or "my hand" (y), meaning either his own hand, which was heavy, and hung down, his spirits failing, his strength being exhausted, and so his hands weak, feeble, and remiss, that he could not hold them up through his afflictions, and his groanings under them, see Psalm 102:5; or the hand of God upon him, his afflicting hand, which had touched him and pressed hard upon him, and lay heavy, and was heavier than his groanings showed; though he groaned much, he did not groan more, nor so much, as his afflictions called for; and therefore it was no wonder that his complaint was bitter, nor should it be reckoned rebellion and provocation; see Job 6:2.
(x) "exacerbatio", Montanus, Vatablus, Schmidt; "exasperatio", Mercerus, Drusius; "pertinacia", Bolducius; "contumacia habetur", Cocceius; "rebellionem haberi", Junius & Tremellius; "rebellio est", Piscator, Codurcus. (y) "manus mea", Montanus, Vatablus, Mercerus, Drusius, Michaelis.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. to-day—implying, perhaps, that the debate was carried on through more days than one (see Introduction).
bitter—(Job 7:11; 10:1).
my stroke—the hand of God on me (Margin, Job 19:21; Ps 32:4).
heavier than—is so heavy that I cannot relieve myself adequately by groaning.
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