Job 11:14
If iniquity be in your hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in your tabernacles.
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Job 11:14. If iniquity be in thy hand — If thou hast in thy hand, or possession, any goods gotten by injustice or oppression, as it seems they supposed he had; or, he means, more generally, if thou allowest thyself in any sinful practices, the hand being put for action, whereof it is the instrument; put it far away — Keep thyself at a great distance, not only from such actions, but also from the very occasions and appearances of them. Let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles — That is, in thy habitation, either in thyself or in thy family; whose sins Job was obliged, as far as he could, to prevent or reform, as it seems he had done, Job 1:5. He saith, tabernacles, because anciently the habitations of great men consisted of several tents or tabernacles.11:13-20 Zophar exhorts Job to repentance, and gives him encouragement, yet mixed with hard thoughts of him. He thought that worldly prosperity was always the lot of the righteous, and that Job was to be deemed a hypocrite unless his prosperity was restored. Then shalt thou lift up thy face without spot; that is, thou mayst come boldly to the throne of grace, and not with the terror and amazement expressed in ch. 9:34. If we are looked upon in the face of the Anointed, our faces that were cast down may be lifted up; though polluted, being now washed with the blood of Christ, they may be lifted up without spot. We may draw near in full assurance of faith, when we are sprinkled from an evil conscience, Heb 10:22.If iniquity be in thine hand - If you have in your possession anything that has been unjustly obtained. If you have oppressed the poor and the fatherless, and have what properly belongs to them, let it be restored. This is the obvious duty of one who comes to God to implore his favor; compare Luke 19:8. 14. Rather, "if thou wilt put far away the iniquity in thine hand" (as Zaccheus did, Lu 19:8). The apodosis or conclusion is at Job 11:15, "then shalt thou," &c. Either,

1. If thou hast in thine hand or possession any good, got by injury or oppression, as it seems they supposed that he had. Or,

2. More generally, If thou allowest thyself in any sinful practices. The hand is put for action, whereof it is the instrument.

Put it far away; keep thyself at a great distance, not only from such actions, but also from the very occasions and appearances of them.

Let not wickedness dwell, let it not have a quiet and settled abode, or allowance, in thy habitation, i.e. either in thyself, or in thy family; whose sins Job was obliged as far as he could to prevent or reform; as he had done, Job 1:5. He saith

tabernacles, because anciently the habitations of great men consisted of several tents or tabernacles, as we see, Genesis 24:67 31:33. If iniquity be in thine hand,.... For, as the heart must be prepared for the stretching out of the hand in prayer to God, so it is not any hand that is to be stretched out or lifted up unto God; not hands full of blood, or defiled with sin, but holy hands; see Isaiah 1:15, 1 Timothy 2:8; it is not said, if iniquity be in thine heart, or on thy conscience,

put it far away; for sin cannot be put away out of the heart, it will have a place there as long as we live; though it should not be regarded, cherished, and nourished there; if so, God will not hear prayer, Psalm 66:18; and nothing can put away or remove afar off guilt from the conscience but the blood of Jesus; which, being sprinkled, purifies the heart and purges the conscience from dead works; but it is said, if it is in thine hand, which is the instrument of action, and may signify the commission of sin, and a series and course of sinning, which Job's friends suspected he was privately guilty of; and therefore advise him to leave off such a sinful course, and abstain from all appearance of evil, and live a holy and godly conversation:

and let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles; in any room or apartment of his house; some restrain this, and iniquity in the former clause, to ill gotten goods, obtained by rapine and oppression, which he is advised to restore to those that had been injured by him; but there is no need to limit it to any sin: besides, wickedness may be put for wicked men, and the sense be, that, as he should not indulge to any iniquity himself, so neither should he suffer wicked men to dwell in his house, but make a general reformation in himself and in his family.

If iniquity be in thine {h} hand, put it far away, and let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles.

(h) Renounce your own evil works and see that they do not offend God, over whom you have charge.

14. The reformation which Zophar impresses on Job has several steps: first, the preparation of his heart; then, prayer unto God; then, the putting away of his personal sins; and finally, those of his home. These are enumerated, one after another, but nothing lies in the order of enumeration.Verse 14. - If iniquity be in thine hand. Zophar assumes this to be probable, nay, almost certain. He has already told Job that God has exacted from him less than his iniquity (און, the same word) deserves (ver. 6). Conformably with this view, he now suggests that it would not do for Job to stretch out to God in prayer a hand full of iniquity, and that therefore, previously to making his supplication, he would do well to lay his iniquity aside. In a general way, the advice is excellent; but it was insulting to Job, who denied that he had any definite act of sin on his conscience. Put it far away; i.e. repent of it, confess it to God; if the case admits of it, make reparation or restitution. And let not wickedness dwell in thy tabernacles; or, in thy tents. The insinuation seems to be that Job is a robber chief, and that his tent and the tents of his followers are full of ill-gotten spoils, the fruit of his raids upon the defenceless. The feminine form of expression has reference to the divine wisdom (Chokma, Job 11:6), and amplifies what is there said of its transcendent reality. Its absoluteness is described by four dimensions, like the absoluteness of the love which devised the plan for man's redemption (Ephesians 3:18). The pronoun היא, with reference to this subject of the sentence, must be supplied. She is as "the heights of heaven" (comp. on subst. pro adj. Job 22:12); what wilt or canst thou do in order to scale that which is high as heaven? In Job 11:9 we have translated according to the reading מדּה with He mappic. This feminine construction is a contraction for מדּתהּ, as Job 5:13, ערמם for ערמתם; Zechariah 4:2, גלה for גלתה, and more syncopated forms of a like kind (vid., Comm. ber den Psalter, i. 225, ii. 172). The reading recorded by the Masora is, however, מדּה with He raph., according to which the word seems to be the accusative used adverbially; nevertheless the separation of this acc. relativus from its regens by the insertion of a word between them (comp. Job 15:10) would make a difficulty here where היא is wanting, and consequently מדה seems to signify mensura ejus whichever way it may be written (since ah raphe is also sometimes a softened form of the suffix, Job 31:22; Ewald, 94, b). The wisdom of God is in its height altogether inaccessible, in its depth fathomless and beyond research, in its length unbounded, in its breadth incomprehensible, stretching out far beyond all human thought.
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