|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
24:1-12 Job discourses further about the prosperity of the wicked. That many live at ease who are ungodly and profane, he had showed, ch. xxi. Here he shows that many who live in open defiance of all the laws of justice, succeed in wicked practices; and we do not see them reckoned with in this world. He notices those that do wrong under pretence of law and authority; and robbers, those that do wrong by force. He says, God layeth not folly to them; that is, he does not at once send his judgments, nor make them examples, and so manifest their folly to all the world. But he that gets riches, and not by right, at his end shall be a fool, Jer 17:11.
Verse 12. - Men groan from out of the city. It is not only in the wild tracts bordering on the desert (vers. 5-8), or on the large farms of rich landholders (vers. 9-11), that oppression takes place. Men's groans are heard also "from the city," and in the midst of the city, where murder, robbery, burglary, adultery, and other crimes of the deepest dye abound. Then the soul of the wounded crieth out. In appeals to God for help, or in inarticulate cries, the wounded spirit of the oppressed and injured vents itself. Yet God layeth not folly to them. Yet God seems to take no notice. He gives no sign of disapproval, but allows the oppressors to go on in their foolish courses unchecked.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Men groan from out of the city,.... Because of the oppressions and injuries done to them, so that not only the poor in the country that were employed in the fields, and oliveyards, and vineyards, were used exceeding ill; but even in cities, where not only are an abundance of people, and so the outrages committed upon them, which made them groan, were done openly and publicly, with great insolence and impudence, but where also courts of judicature were held, and yet in defiance of law and justice were those evils done, see Ecclesiastes 3:16;
and the soul of the wounded crieth out; that is, the persons wounded with the sword, or any other instrument of vengeance, stabbed as they went along the public streets of the city, where they fell, these cried out vehemently as such persons do; so audacious, as well as barbarous, were these wicked men, that insulted and abused them:
yet God layeth not folly to them; it is for the sake of this observation that the whole above account is given of wicked men, as well as what follows; that though they are guilty of such atrocious crimes, such inhumanity, cruelty, and oppression in town and country, unheard of, unparalleled, iniquities, sins to be punished by a judge, yet are suffered of God to pass with impunity. By "folly" is meant sin, not lesser sins only, little, foolish, trifling things, but greater and grosser ones, such as before expressed; all sin is folly, being the breach of a law which is holy, just, and good, and exposes to its penalty and curse; and against God the lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy; and as it is harmful and prejudicial, either to the characters, bodies, or estates of men, and especially to their immortal souls; and yet God that charges his angels with folly did not charge these men with it; that is, he seemed, in the outward dealings of his providence towards them, as if he took no notice of their sins, but connived at them, or took no account of them, and did not take any methods in his providence to show their folly, and convince them of it, nor discover it to others, and make them public examples, did not punish them, but let them go on in them without control; and this Job observes, in order to prove his point, that wicked men are not always punished in this life.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
12. Men—rather, "mortals" (not the common Hebrew for "men"); so the Masoretic vowel points read as English Version. But the vowel points are modern. The true reading is, "The dying," answering to "the wounded" in the next clause, so Syriac. Not merely in the country (Job 24:11), but also in the city there are oppressed sufferers, who cry for help in vain. "From out of the city"; that is, they long to get forth and be free outside of it (Ex 1:11; 2:23).
wounded—by the oppressor (Eze 30:24).
layeth not folly—takes no account of (by punishing) their sin ("folly" in Scripture; Job 1:22). This is the gist of the whole previous list of sins (Ac 17:30). Umbreit with Syriac reads by changing a vowel point, "Regards not their supplication."
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