|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
31:33-40 Job clears himself from the charge of hypocrisy. We are loth to confess our faults, willing to excuse them, and to lay the blame upon others. But he that thus covers his sins, shall not prosper, Pr 28:13. He speaks of his courage in what is good, as an evidence of his sincerity in it. When men get estates unjustly, they are justly deprived of comfort from them; it was sown wheat, but shall come up thistles. What men do not come honestly by, will never do them any good. The words of Job are ended. They end with a bold assertion, that, with respect to accusation against his moral and religious character as the cause for his sufferings, he could appeal to God. But, however confident Job was, we shall see he was mistaken, chap. 40:4,5; 1Jo 1:8. Let us all judge ourselves; wherein we are guilty, let us seek forgiveness in that blood which cleanseth from all sin; and may the Lord have mercy upon us, and write his laws in our hearts!
Verse 39. - If I have eaten the fruits thereof without money; i.e. without acquiring a title to them by purchase. Or have caused the owners thereof to lose their life. Either by actual violence or by depriving them of the means of support (see the comment on Job 29:13). Job had been accused of robbery and oppression both by Zophar (Job 20:12-19) and Eliphaz (Job 22:5-9). He had not, however, been accused of actual murder.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
If I have eaten the fruits thereof without money,.... Or, "the strength thereof without silver" (b); see Genesis 4:12, silver being the money chiefly in use in those times. Job's meaning is, that he ate not anything of the fruits and increase of his own land, without having paid for the same, which he would have done, if he had got his land out of the hands of the rightful owners of it, by deceit or violence; or if he had not paid his workmen for ploughing, sowing, reaping, &c. or if he had demanded the fruits of the earth of his tenants, to whom he had let out his farms, without giving them a proper price for them:
or have caused the owners thereof to lose their life; as Jezebel caused Naboth to lose his, who was the original proprietor, that Ahab might possess it, 1 Kings 21:7; or it may signify tenants, to whom Job rented out fields, but did not starve them by renting them under hard leases, or lands on hard terms, so that they could not live upon them; or it may design the tillers of the land, as Jarchi and Bar Tzemach; those that wrought in it, the servants that were employed in ploughing, &c. to whom wages were due, and who had not too hard labour imposed upon them, to the endangering of their lives; or he did not "afflict and grieve" (c) them, as some versions; or make their lives bitter, through hard bondage and service, as the Israelites in Egypt.
(b) "robur ejus", Montanus, Bolducius, Mercerus, Drusius; "vim ejus", Junius & Tremellius, Cocceius, Michaelis, Schultens; "sine, vel absque argento", Mercer, Drusius, Cocceius, Michaelis, Schultens.
(c) "afflixi", V. L. "dolore affeci", Pagninus; so Broughton.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
39. lose … life—not literally, but "harassed to death"; until he gave me up his land gratis [Maurer]; as in Jud 16:16; "suffered him to languish" by taking away his means of living [Umbreit] (1Ki 21:19).
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