|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
26:5-14 Many striking instances are here given of the wisdom and power of God, in the creation and preservation of the world. If we look about us, to the earth and waters here below, we see his almighty power. If we consider hell beneath, though out of our sight, yet we may conceive the discoveries of God's power there. If we look up to heaven above, we see displays of God's almighty power. By his Spirit, the eternal Spirit that moved upon the face of the waters, the breath of his mouth, Ps 33:6, he has not only made the heavens, but beautified them. By redemption, all the other wonderful works of the Lord are eclipsed; and we may draw near, and taste his grace, learn to love him, and walk with delight in his ways. The ground of the controversy between Job and the other disputants was, that they unjustly thought from his afflictions that he must have been guilty of heinous crimes. They appear not to have duly considered the evil and just desert of original sin; nor did they take into account the gracious designs of God in purifying his people. Job also darkened counsel by words without knowledge. But his views were more distinct. He does not appear to have alleged his personal righteousness as the ground of his hope towards God. Yet what he admitted in a general view of his case, he in effect denied, while he complained of his sufferings as unmerited and severe; that very complaint proving the necessity for their being sent, in order to his being further humbled in the sight of God.
Verse 11. - The pillars of heaven tremble. The "pillars of heaven" are the mountains, on which the sky seems to rest. These "tremble," or seem to tremble, at the presence of God (Psalm 18:7; Psalm 114:4; Isaiah 5:25) when he visits the earth in storm and tempest, either because the whole atmosphere is full of disturbance, and the outline of the mountains shifts and changes as rain and storm sweep over them, or because the reverberations of the thunder, which shake the air, seem to shake the earth also. And are astonished at his reproof. To the mind of the poet this "trembling" is expressive of astonishment and consternation. He regards the mountains as hearing the voice of God in the storm, recognizing it as raised in anger, and so trembling and cowering before him.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The pillars of heaven tremble,.... Which may be understood either of the air, the lower part of the heavens, which may be thought to be the foundation, prop, and support of them, and is sometimes called the firmament, and "the firmament of his power", Psalm 150:1; and which seems to tremble when there are thunder and lightnings, and coruscations in it; or else the mountains, which, reaching up to the heavens, look as if they were the pillars and support of them; and are indeed said to be the foundations of heaven, which move and shake and tremble at the presence and power of God, and at any expressions of his wrath and anger, and particularly through earthquakes and storms, and tempests of thunder and lightning; see 2 Samuel 22:8, which are meant by what follows:
and are astonished at his reproof; his voice of thunder, which is sometimes awful and terrible, astonishing and surprising; and, to set forth the greatness of it, inanimate creatures are represented as trembling, and astonished at it; see Psalm 104:7; some interpret this figuratively of angels, who they suppose are employed in the direction of the heavens, and the motion of the heavenly bodies; and who they think are the same which in the New Testament are called "the powers of heaven said to be shaken", Matthew 24:29; and to be the seraphim that covered their faces upon a glorious display of the majesty of God, and when the posts of the door of the temple moved at the voice of him that cried, Isaiah 6:1; but if a figurative sense may be admitted of, the principal persons in the church, sometimes signified by heaven in Scripture, may be thought of; as ministers of the word, who are pillars in the house of God; yea, every true member of the church of God is made a pillar in it; and these tremble, and are astonished oftentimes when the Lord rebukes them by afflictions, though it is in love and kindness to them, Proverbs 9:1.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. pillars—poetically for the mountains which seem to bear up the sky (Ps 104:32).
astonished—namely, from terror. Personification.
his reproof—(Ps 104:7). The thunder, reverberating from cliff to cliff (Hab 3:10; Na 1:5).
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