Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
My soul is weary of my life; I will leave my complaint upon myself; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.
Job 10:1-22. Job's Reply to Bildad Continued.
1. leave my complaint upon myself—rather, "I will give loose to my complaint" (Job 7:11).
I will say unto God, Do not condemn me; shew me wherefore thou contendest with me.
2. show me, &c.—Do not, by virtue of Thy mere sovereignty, treat me as guilty without showing me the reasons.
Is it good unto thee that thou shouldest oppress, that thou shouldest despise the work of thine hands, and shine upon the counsel of the wicked?
3. Job is unwilling to think God can have pleasure in using His power to "oppress" the weak, and to treat man, the work of His own hands, as of no value (Job 10:8; Ps 138:8).
shine upon—favor with prosperity (Ps 50:2).
Hast thou eyes of flesh? or seest thou as man seeth?
4-6. Dost Thou see as feebly as man? that is, with the same uncharitable eye, as, for instance, Job's friends? Is Thy time as short? Impossible! Yet one might think, from the rapid succession of Thy strokes, that Thou hadst no time to spare in overwhelming me.
Are thy days as the days of man? are thy years as man's days,
That thou inquirest after mine iniquity, and searchest after my sin?
Thou knowest that I am not wicked; and there is none that can deliver out of thine hand.
7. "Although Thou (the Omniscient) knowest," &c. (connected with Job 10:6), "Thou searchest after my sin."
and … that none that can deliver out of thine hand—Therefore Thou hast no need to deal with me with the rapid violence which man would use (see Job 10:6).
Thine hands have made me and fashioned me together round about; yet thou dost destroy me.
8. Made—with pains; implying a work of difficulty and art; applying to God language applicable only to man.
together round about—implying that the human body is a complete unity, the parts of which on all sides will bear the closest scrutiny.
Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast made me as the clay; and wilt thou bring me into dust again?
9. clay—Job 10:10 proves that the reference here is, not so much to the perishable nature of the materials, as to their wonderful fashioning by the divine potter.
Hast thou not poured me out as milk, and curdled me like cheese?
10. In the organization of the body from its rude commencements, the original liquid gradually assumes a more solid consistency, like milk curdling into cheese (Ps 139:15, 16). Science reveals that the chyle circulated by the lacteal vessels is the supply to every organ.
Thou hast clothed me with skin and flesh, and hast fenced me with bones and sinews.
11. fenced—or "inlaid" (Ps 139:15); "curiously wrought" [Umbreit]. In the f�tus the skin appears first, then the flesh, then the harder parts.
Thou hast granted me life and favour, and thy visitation hath preserved my spirit.
12. visitation—Thy watchful Providence.
And these things hast thou hid in thine heart: I know that this is with thee.
13. is with thee—was Thy purpose. All God's dealings with Job in his creation, preservation, and present afflictions were part of His secret counsel (Ps 139:16; Ac 15:18; Ec 3:11).
If I sin, then thou markest me, and thou wilt not acquit me from mine iniquity.
14, 15. Job is perplexed because God "marks" every sin of his with such ceaseless rigor. Whether "wicked" (godless and a hypocrite) or "righteous" (comparatively sincere), God condemns and punishes alike.
If I be wicked, woe unto me; and if I be righteous, yet will I not lift up my head. I am full of confusion; therefore see thou mine affliction;
15. lift up my head—in conscious innocence (Ps 3:3).
see thou—rather, "and seeing I see (I too well see) mine affliction," (which seems to prove me guilty) [Umbreit].
For it increaseth. Thou huntest me as a fierce lion: and again thou shewest thyself marvellous upon me.
16. increaseth—rather, "(if) I lift up (my head) Thou wouldest hunt me," &c. [Umbreit].
and again—as if a lion should not kill his prey at once, but come back and torture it again.
Thou renewest thy witnesses against me, and increasest thine indignation upon me; changes and war are against me.
17. witnesses—His accumulated trials were like a succession of witnesses brought up in proof of his guilt, to wear out the accused.
changes and war—rather, "(thou settest in array) against me host after host" (literally, "changes and a host," that is, a succession of hosts); namely, his afflictions, and then reproach upon reproach from his friends.
Wherefore then hast thou brought me forth out of the womb? Oh that I had given up the ghost, and no eye had seen me!
I should have been as though I had not been; I should have been carried from the womb to the grave.
Are not my days few? cease then, and let me alone, that I may take comfort a little,
20. But, since I was destined from my birth to these ills, at least give me a little breathing time during the few days left me (Job 9:34; 13:21; Ps 39:13).
Before I go whence I shall not return, even to the land of darkness and the shadow of death;
A land of darkness, as darkness itself; and of the shadow of death, without any order, and where the light is as darkness.
22. The ideas of order and light, disorder and darkness, harmonize (Ge 1:2). Three Hebrew words are used for darkness; in Job 10:21 (1) the common word "darkness"; here (2) "a land of gloom" (from a Hebrew root, "to cover up"); (3) as "thick darkness" or blackness (from a root, expressing sunset). "Where the light thereof is like blackness." Its only sunshine is thick darkness. A bold figure of poetry. Job in a better frame has brighter thoughts of the unseen world. But his views at best wanted the definite clearness of the Christian's. Compare with his words here Re 21:23; 22:5; 2Ti 1:10.