|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
5:1-5 Eliphaz here calls upon Job to answer his arguments. Were any of the saints or servants of God visited with such Divine judgments as Job, or did they ever behave like him under their sufferings? The term, saints, holy, or more strictly, consecrated ones, seems in all ages to have been applied to the people of God, through the Sacrifice slain in the covenant of their reconciliation. Eliphaz doubts not that the sin of sinners directly tends to their ruin. They kill themselves by some lust or other; therefore, no doubt, Job has done some foolish thing, by which he has brought himself into this condition. The allusion was plain to Job's former prosperity; but there was no evidence of Job's wickedness, and the application to him was unfair and severe.
Verse 2. - For wrath killeth the foolish man, and envy slayeth the silly one. For "wrath" and "envy "others suggest "vexaation" and "impatience" (Lee), or "vexation" and "jealousy" (Revised Version). The connection of thought seems to be, "For thou art quite foolish enough to let thy vexation and impatience prompt thee to such a course, which could only lead to thy destruction." Eliphaz is quite sure that trust in any other beside God, and appeal to any other against God, is utter folly, sinful infatuation, and must lead to the ruin of whoever indulges in it. Thus the invocation of angels receives no countenance from him, but the contrary.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For wrath killeth the foolish man,.... Not one that is an idiot, and destitute of common sense, and has no understanding in things natural and civil; but a wicked man, who has no knowledge of things divine and spiritual, and so foolish; which is the character of every natural man, and of God's people before conversion; and even of some professors, who are foolish virgins, and carry the lamp of a religious profession without the oil of grace; and such an one Eliphaz took Job to be, whom sooner or later the wrath of the Lord, as the Targum interprets it, which is revealed from heaven, and comes down upon the children of disobedience, would consume like devouring fire: or this may be understood of the wrath and passion of such men themselves, which sometimes rises in them to such an height, as that they die in a fit of it; or do those things which bring them to death, either by the hand of God, or by the civil magistrate:
and envy slayeth the silly one; one that is simple and void of understanding, and is easily persuaded and drawn into sin, either by his own heart, or by evil men, or by the temptations of Satan; and in whose heart envy at the prosperity of others dwells, and which insensibly preys upon him, eats up his own spirits, and is rottenness to his bones, and crumbles them into dust, Proverbs 14:30; or the word may be rendered "jealousy", or "zeal" (q), as it sometimes is, and may signify the jealousy of the Lord, zeal for his own glory, which he sometimes stirs up as a man of war, and which smokes against wicked men, and consumes them as fire, see Isaiah 42:13; Eliphaz by all this would represent and insinuate that Job was such a man, hot, passionate, and angry with God and his providence, and envious at the prosperity of others, particularly his friends; and so was a foolish and silly man, in whose breast wrath and envy rested, and would be his ruin and destruction, as he was already under slaying and killing providences.
(q) "zelus", Vatablus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Schmidt, Michaelis, Schultens.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. wrath … envy—fretful and passionate complaints, such as Eliphaz charged Job with (Job 4:5; so Pr 14:30). Not, the wrath of God killeth the foolish, and His envy, &c.
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