|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
28:1-11 Job maintained that the dispensations of Providence were regulated by the highest wisdom. To confirm this, he showed of what a great deal of knowledge and wealth men may make themselves masters. The caverns of the earth may be discovered, but not the counsels of Heaven. Go to the miners, thou sluggard in religion, consider their ways, and be wise. Let their courage and diligence in seeking the wealth that perishes, shame us out of slothfulness and faint-heartedness in labouring for the true riches. How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! How much easier, and safer! Yet gold is sought for, but grace neglected. Will the hopes of precious things out of the earth, so men call them, though really they are paltry and perishing, be such a spur to industry, and shall not the certain prospect of truly precious things in heaven be much more so?
Verse 11. - He bindeth the floods from overflowing. This, again, may be either taken generally of man's ability to create dams, dykes, and embankments, whereby the overflow of waters is prevented; or specially of such works when connected with mines, from which it is possible, in some instances, to dam out water that would otherwise interfere with their working. The word translated "overflowing" means probably "weeping," and seems to point to that leakage from the roofs and sides of galleries and adits which is more difficult to control and stop than even subterranean springs or rivers. And the thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light. This is the final result of mining operations. Things useful or beautiful that are hiddden deep down in the heart of the earth, and that might have seemed wholly inaccessible, are brought out of the pit's month into the light of day for the service and delectation of mankind.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He bindeth the floods from overflowing,.... As the miner finds ways and means of cutting through rocks, and draining and carrying off the waters in his mine; so he makes use of other methods of restraining and keeping back the waters from coming into and overflowing his works, and even "from weeping" (m), as in the original text; he binds them up so firmly, and stops every avenue and passage so close, that the waters cannot so much as ooze, or distil and drop as a tear from the eye:
and the thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light; the several metals and minerals, gems and precious stones, that lay hid in the bosom of the earth, are fetched out, and brought to light by the diligence and labours of the miner; the same that are called stones of darkness, and of the shadow of death, Job 28:3. This verse is likewise by several interpreted of God, and of what is done by him in the things of nature and providence; he it is that at first shut up the sea with doors; made the cloud its garment, and thick darkness its swaddling bands, in which he wrapped and bound it, as an infant, and still sets bars and doors to it, and says, hitherto shalt thou come, and no further, Job 38:8; and, in a spiritual sense, he restrains the floods of affliction from overflowing and overwhelming his people; and, when the temptations of Satan come in like a flood upon them, his Spirit sets up a standard against them, which keeps them from doing them any harm; and, when the wrath of persecutors rises up against them, and threatens them with destruction, he withholds those proud waters from going over their souls and overwhelming them: and so likewise it is he that bringeth hidden things to light, things in nature men had never seen or known before; things in providence, dark and intricate; things in grace, out of the sight of the most penetrating understanding: he reveals the secrets of his love and grace to them that fear him; the glorious scheme of salvation by Christ, which was hid in himself, in the thoughts, purposes, and counsels of his heart; the mysteries of his Gospel, hid from the wise and prudent, Matthew 11:25; and life and immortality itself, or the way to it, which he has brought to light through the Gospel; yea, he brings to light all the hidden things of a man's heart, and sets them before him, and convinces him of them in a loving way; and if not now, he will hereafter "bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts", 1 Corinthians 4:5; but, as before observed, it is best to understand the whole paragraph of miners; of their sagacity in opening mines, and searching into the bowels of the earth, where none were ever before them; and of their indefatigableness, industry, and labour therein, and of the success that attends them; Job's design being to show, that things rich and valuable, and most remote from the sight of men, may, by diligent application, be investigated and obtained; yet such wisdom is not attainable as to understand the reason of the various dealings of God with the sons of men, both good and bad; and therefore, after all he had said on the above subject, still the question is as follows.
(m) "a fletu", Montanus, Bolducius, Junius & Tremellius, Michaelis, Schultens; so Broughton; "a stillatione", Vatablus, Mercerus, Drusius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. floods—"He restrains the streams from weeping"; a poetical expression for the trickling subterranean rills, which impede him; answering to the first clause of Job 28:10; so also the two latter clauses in each verse correspond.
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