|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
32:15-22 If we are sure that the Spirit of God suggested what we are about to say, still we ought to refrain, till it comes to our turn to speak. God is the God of order, not of confusion. It is great refreshment to a good man, to speak for the glory of the Lord, and to edify others. And the more we consider the majesty of God, as our Maker, and the more we dread his wrath and justice, the less shall we sinfully fear or flatter men. Could we set the wrath Lord always before us, in his mercies and his terrors, we should not be moved from doing our duty in whatever we are called to do.
Verse 19. - Behold, my belly is as wine which hath no vent. The process of fermentation properly takes place in the vat, from which the gas evolved in the operation can freely escape. When wine was put into skins before fermentation was complete, and gas continued to be evolved, the effect was that the skins became distended, as the gas had no vent, and then not unfrequently the skins would burst, especially if they were old ones (see Matthew 9:17). It is ready to burst like new bottles. Even if the skins were new, they would undergo distension, and would appear as if "ready to burst," though the actual catastrophe might be avoided. Elihu's pent-up feelings seem to him, if they do not obtain a vent, to threaten some such a result.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Behold, my belly is as wine, which hath no vent,.... Or, "is not opened" (a), like a bottle of wine, as Ben Gersom, which is stopped close, and the wine in it new; which is most apt to ferment, and should have vent given it; so the Targum,
"as new wine, which is not opened:''
in the same manner Jarchi and Bar Tzemach interpret it; in these words Elihu illustrates, by a metaphor taken from new wine put into bottles and tightly stopped, what he had before more literally and properly expressed, and so in the following clause:
it is ready to burst like new bottles; or perhaps it may be better rendered, "like bottles of new wine" (b); for new bottles are not so apt to burst as old ones, and especially when they have new wine in them; the bottles of the ancients, and in the eastern countries, being made of skin, which better agrees with what our Lord says, Matthew 9:17; by his belly he means his mind, which was full of matter, and that matter he compares to new wine in bottles, tightly stopped, which need vent, and are in danger of bursting: the doctrine of the Gospel is like to wine, Sol 7:9; to wine neat and clean, being free from all human mixtures; to wine of a good flavour and pleasant taste, as the Gospel is to those whose taste is changed; to generous wine, which revives, and refreshes, and comforts; all which effects the doctrines of the Gospel have, when attended with a divine influence: and it may be compared to new wine; not that it is a new and upstart doctrine, it is the everlasting Gospel, made known immediately on the fall of Adam, and was ordained before the world for our glory; but because it is newly, or of late, under the Gospel dispensation, more clearly revealed: ministers of the word are like vessels, into which it is put; they are but vessels, even earthly vessels, and have nothing but what is put into them; and they are like vessels stopped up, when they are straitened in themselves, or shut up by the Lord, that they cannot come forth freely in their ministry, and when any outward restraint is laid upon them by persecuting magistrates, and when there is no open door for them in Providence; which gives them great pain and uneasiness, and, let the consequence be what it will, they are weary of forbearing, and cannot stay, but must speak the things they see and know; see Jeremiah 20:9.
(a) "quod non est apertum", Pagninus, Michaelis, Schultens. (b) "sicut utres vino nova repleti", Piscator.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
19. belly—bosom: from which the words of Orientalists in speaking seem to come more than with us; they speak gutturally. "Like (new) wine (in fermentation) without a vent," to work itself off. New wine is kept in new goatskin bottles. This fittingly applies to the young Elihu, as contrasted with the old friends (Mt 9:7).
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