Job 15:32
It shall be accomplished before his time, and his branch shall not be green.
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(32) It shall be accomplished.—That is, paid in full before its time.

The remainder of this chapter calls for little explanation. In it the speaker only repeats the orthodox and familiar saw that the wicked are punished in life, and therefore, by implication, the good rewarded: a maxim which fails utterly in the face of afflictions like those of Job, unless, as his friends insinuated, he was one of the wicked. After stating the doom of the ungodly, Eliphaz, in the last verse, sums up the character of those he has been denouncing. Not only are they evil in themselves, but they hatch evil; but it is evil that recoils on themselves.

Job 15:32-33. It shall be accomplished — Namely, that which was last mentioned, that vanity should be his recompense: before his time — When, by the course of nature, and common providence, he might have continued and flourished much longer. And his branch — His glory and prosperity, or his children; shall not be green — Shall not continue to flourish as heretofore. He shall shake off his unripe grapes — The wicked man, who, by his sins, is the author of his own ruin, shall be deprived of his fruit, of his children, and other comforts, before their time; as the vine — Which either of itself drops its tender grapes, or loses them when they are plucked off by a violent hand; and shall cast off his flower as the olive — Which flourishes much about the same time with the vine, and commonly suffers similar injuries.15:17-35 Eliphaz maintains that the wicked are certainly miserable: whence he would infer, that the miserable are certainly wicked, and therefore Job was so. But because many of God's people have prospered in this world, it does not therefore follow that those who are crossed and made poor, as Job, are not God's people. Eliphaz shows also that wicked people, particularly oppressors, are subject to continual terror, live very uncomfortably, and perish very miserably. Will the prosperity of presumptuous sinners end miserably as here described? Then let the mischiefs which befal others, be our warnings. Though no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous, nevertheless, afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruits of righteousness to them that are exercised thereby. No calamity, no trouble, however heavy, however severe, can rob a follower of the Lord of his favour. What shall separate him from the love of Christ?It shall be accomplished before his time - Margin, "cut off." The image here is that of a tree, which had been suggested in Job 15:30. Here it is followed up by various illustrations drawn from the flower, the fruit, etc., all of which are designed to denote the same thing - that a wicked man will not be permanently prosperous; he will not live and flourish as he would if he were righteous. He will be like a tree that is cut down before its proper time, or that casts its flowers and fruits and brings nothing to perfection. The phrase here literally is, "It shall not be filled up in its time;" that is, a wicked man will be cut off before he has filled up the measure of his days, like a tree that decays and falls before its proper time. A similar idea occurs in Psalm 55:23. "Bloody and deceitful men shall not live out half their days." As a general fact this is all true, and the observation of the ancient Idumeans was correct. The temperate live longer than the intemperate; the chaste longer than the licentious; he that controls and governs his passions longer than he who gives the reins to them; and he who leads a life of honesty and virtue longer than he who lives for crime. Pure religion makes a man temperate, sober, chaste, calm, dispassionate, and equable in his temper; saves from broils, contentions, and strifes; subdues the angry passions, and thus tends to lengthen out life.

His branch shall not be green - It shall be dried up and withered away - retaining the image of a tree.

32. Literally, "it (the tree to which he is compared, Job 15:30, or else his life) shall not be filled up in its time"; that is, "he shall be ended before his time."

shall not be green—image from a withered tree; the childless extinction of the wicked.

It shall be accomplished, to wit, that which was last mentioned, that vanity should be his recompence. Or, it, i.e. his branch, mentioned in the next clause of the verse, from which it is understood in this former clause, as is very usual in the Holy Scripture, shall be consumed, or cut off.

Before his time, i.e. when by the course of nature and common providence it might have continued and flourished much longer.

His branch; either,

1. His glory and prosperity. Or rather,

2. His children, by comparing Job 15:34, where the desolation is said to fall upon all the congregation and tabernacles of these men; and so he reflects upon Job, who lost his children.

Shall not be green, i.e. shall not continue to flourish, as it had done. It shall be accomplished before his time, Either the recompence or reward of his trusting vanity, in vain persons or things, the punishment of such a trust, the sorrows and troubles following upon it; these shall come upon the wicked man "before his day" (f), as it may be rendered; before the day of his death, even before his old age; before the evil days come in a course of nature, and those years in which he has no pleasure: or his life, and the days of his life, "shall be filled up" (g); or be at an end before his time; not before the time fixed in the decree and purpose of God, Job 14:5; but before his own time, that he and his friends thought he might have lived, and as his healthful constitution promised; or before the then common term of human life; and so the phrase is expressive or an immature death:

and his branch shall not be green; but dried up and wither away; his wealth and riches, his children and family, be utterly extinct; instead of being like a branch, green and flourishing, shall be like a dry stick, useless and unprofitable, only fit for burning; see Job 15:30.

(f) "ante diem suam", Vatablus, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator. (g) "complebitur", Montanus; "implebitur", Schultens.

It shall be accomplished before his time, and his branch shall not be green.
32. Before his time] lit. before his day, that is, the natural day of his death, cf. ch. Job 22:16; and the clause means, in the midst of his years (Psalm 55:23) his recompence, or exchange, is fulfilled and goes into accomplishment—he is cut off. The words might also mean that his recompence accrues to him in its fulness. In the second clause “branch” is the palm-branch, or crowning tuft (Isaiah 9:14), and the figure is that of such a tree withered and dead.Verse 32. - It shall be accomplished before his time. "It [i.e. the recompense] shall be accomplished [or, 'paid in full '] before its time [i.e. before payment is due]." A vague threat, probably intended to signify that death will come upon the wicked man prematurely, before he has lived out halt the days of his natural life. And his branch shall not be green; i.e. he shall wither and fade, like a tree not planted by the waterside (Psalm 1:3). 25 Because he stretched out his hand against God,

And was insolent towards the Almighty;

26 He assailed Him with a stiff neck,

With the thick bosses of his shield;

27 Because he covered his face with his fatness,

And addeth fat to his loins,

28 And inhabited desolated cities,

Houses which should not be inhabited,

Which were appointed to be ruins.

29 He shall not be rich, and his substance shall not continue

And their substance boweth not to the ground.

30 He escapeth not darkness;

The flame withereth his shoots;

And he perisheth in the breath of His mouth.


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