Job 2:6
And the LORD said to Satan, Behold, he is in your hand; but save his life.
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(6) But save his life.—God’s faithfulness cannot fail even if, as Satan hints, Job’s should do so (2Timothy 2:13). There was one who cared for Job’s life more than he cared for it himself.

Job 2:6. The Lord said, Behold, he is in thy hand — I give thee permission to try him even in this way: do thy worst at him; afflict him to the uttermost of thy power. But save his life — Do not attempt to take that away which I will not suffer thee to do. God had mercy in store for Job, after this trial, and therefore he must survive it; and how much soever he may be afflicted, his life must be given him for a prey. If God did not chain up the roaring lion, how soon would he devour us! As far as he permits the wrath of Satan and wicked men to proceed against his people, he will make it turn to his own praise and theirs, and the remainder thereof he will restrain. Job, in being thus maligned and afflicted by Satan, was a type of Christ; whose heel that infernal serpent was permitted to bruise, to touch even his bone and his flesh, yea, and his life also; because, by dying, he was to do what Job could not do, to destroy him that had the power of death.2:1-6. How well is it for us, that neither men nor devils are to be our judges! but all our judgment comes from the Lord, who never errs. Job holds fast his integrity still, as his weapon. God speaks with pleasure of the power of his own grace. Self-love and self-preservation are powerful in the hearts of men. But Satan accuses Job, representing him as wholly selfish, and minding nothing but his own ease and safety. Thus are the ways and people of God often falsely blamed by the devil and his agents. Permission is granted to Satan to make trial, but with a limit. If God did not chain up the roaring lion, how soon would he devour us! Job, thus slandered by Satan, was a type of Christ, the first prophecy of whom was, that Satan should bruise his heel, and be foiled.Behold, he is in thine hand - He is at thy disposal; see Job 1:12, Margin.

But save his life - Margin, "only." This was to be the only limitation. It would seem that he had the power to make any selection of disease, and to afflict him in any manner, provided it did not terminate fatally. The keen sorrows which Job afterward endured showed the malignancy of the tempter; evinced his ingenuity in inflicting pain, and his knowledge of what thc human frame could be made to bear.

6. but save—rather, "only spare his life." Satan shows his ingenuity in inflicting pain, and also his knowledge of what man's body can bear without vital injury. Do not attempt to take away his life, which I will not suffer thee to do. And the Lord said unto Satan, behold, he is in thine hand,.... Well may a behold be prefixed to this, it being matter of wonder and astonishment that a saint and servant of God should be permitted to be in the hand of Satan; which yet must not be so understood; as if he was off of, and no more upon the heart of God; or as if he was out of the hands of God, and out of the hands of Christ; or as if he was become Satan's property, and a child of his; for neither of these can be true of a good man: nothing can separate him from the love of God; not Satan and all his principalities and powers; nor can men or devils pluck them out of his hands, nor out of the hands of his son; nor can those who are the children of God be any more the servants of sin, or the vassals of Satan; or in other words, nor can any of them be a child of God one day, and a child of the devil the next, which is the divinity of some men: nor is the sense of this passage, that Satan had leave to do with Job as he pleased, for then he would have utterly destroyed him; but the power granted him was a limited one, as follows:

but save his life: or "soul" (y); which some understand of his rational soul, that which remains after death, and which, Maimonides (z) observes, Satan has no power over; and according to some the meaning is, do not disturb his mind to distraction, so as to deprive him of his senses, and of the exercise of his rational powers, which through the influence of Satan men have sometimes lost; see Mark 5:4; this is barred against in the permission granted; for otherwise it would not have been a proper trial of Job's integrity; for, should he have been deprived of his reason, and uttered ever such bad things, it would have been no proof of his insincerity; as may be observed in good men in a delirium, they will utter bad words, and do or attempt to do bad things, which is not to be ascribed to their want of grace, but to their want of reason: but rather "life" is meant; not Job's spiritual life, for that was in no danger of being lost; all the devils in hell cannot deprive a truly good man of his spiritual life; grace in him is a well of living water, springing: up to eternal life; he can never die the second death; his life is hid with Christ in God, and is bound up in the bundle of life with the Lord his God, who so is out of the reach of Satan; but corporeal life, which the devil by permission may take away, and is said to have the power of death, which by leave he exercised over men, but here he is restrained from it: Job's life must be spared, that it might fully appear he got the victory over Satan, and stood in his integrity; and that he might still glorify God in a course of afflictions he was yet to endure, in the exercise of his faith, hope, love, patience, humility, submission, and resignation of his will to God; and besides, his appointed time was not come, he had many more days, months, and years, the number of which were with God, to live in the world, as he accordingly did.

(y) "animum ejus", Pagninus, Montanus, Cocccius, Schmidt, Schultens. (z) Moreh Nevochim, par. 3. c. 22. p. 398.

And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save {g} his life.

(g) Thus Satan can go no further in punishing than God has limited him.

Verse 6. - And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold he is in thine hand; i.e. "he is in thy power, to do with him as thou pleasest" - except in one respect. Again it is strongly marked that Satan's power is under God's control, and extends only so far as God shows. But save his life; rather, only spare his life (Revised Version). The didactic purposes for which God was allowing his faithful servant to be tried in the furnace of affliction would have been frustrated by Job's removal from the earth. Individually he might equally well have been compensated in another world; but then the lesson of his example to living men, and the lesson of his story to all future generations of mankind, would have been lost. Besides, God but rarely, in the old world, gave a faithful servant, still in the full vigour of life (Job 42:16, 17), "over unto death" (Psalm 118:18). 22 In all this Job sinned not, nor attributed folly to God.

In all this, i.e., as the lxx correctly renders it: which thus far had befallen him; Ewald et al. translate incorrectly: he gave God no provocation. תּפלה signifies, according to Job 24:12, comp. Job 6:6, saltlessness and tastelessness, dealing devoid of meaning and purpose, and is to be translated either, he uttered not, non edidit, anything absurd against God, as Jerome translates, neque stultum quid contra Deum locutus est; or, he did not attribute folly to God: so that נתן ל are connected, as Psalm 68:35; Jeremiah 13:16. Since נתן by itself nowhere signifies to express, we side with Hirzel and Schlottm. against Rdiger (in his Thes.) and Oehler, in favour of the latter. The writer hints that, later on, Job committed himself by some unwise thoughts of the government of God.

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