Job 20:10
His children shall seek to please the poor, and his hands shall restore their goods.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(10) His children shall seek to please the poor.—That is, shall seek their favour by making good what had been taken from them, or otherwise; or it may be rendered, the poor shall oppress his children.

Job 20:10. His children shall seek to please the poor — Either, 1st, To get some small relief from them in their extreme necessity. Or, rather, 2d, Lest they should revenge themselves on them for the great and many injuries which their father did them, or should seek to the magistrate for reparation. His hands shall restore their goods — By the sentence of the judge, to whom the oppressed poor will appeal, notwithstanding all the endeavours of their oppressors to dissuade them from so doing.20:10-22 The miserable condition of the wicked man in this world is fully set forth. The lusts of the flesh are here called the sins of his youth. His hiding it and keeping it under his tongue, denotes concealment of his beloved lust, and delight therein. But He who knows what is in the heart, knows what is under the tongue, and will discover it. The love of the world, and of the wealth of it, also is wickedness, and man sets his heart upon these. Also violence and injustice, these sins bring God's judgments upon nations and families. Observe the punishment of the wicked man for these things. Sin is turned into gall, than which nothing is more bitter; it will prove to him poison; so will all unlawful gains be. In his fulness he shall be in straits, through the anxieties of his own mind. To be led by the sanctifying grace of God to restore what was unjustly gotten, as Zaccheus was, is a great mercy. But to be forced to restore by the horrors of a despairing conscience, as Judas was, has no benefit and comfort attending it.His children shall seek to please the poor - Margin, or, "the poor shall oppress his children." The idea in the Hebrew seems to be, that his sons shall be reduced to the humiliating condition of asking the aid of the most needy and abject. Instead of being in a situation to assist others, and to indulge in a liberal hospitality, they themselves shall be reduced to the necessity of applying to the poor for the means of subsistence. There is great strength in this expression. It is usually regarded as humiliating to be compelled to ask aid at all; but the idea here is, that they would be reduced to the necessity of asking it of those who themselves needed it, "or would be beggars of beggars."

And his hands shall restore their goods - Noyes renders this, "And their hands shall give back his wealth." Rosenmuller supposes it means, "And their hands shall restore his iniquity;" that is, what their father took unjustly away. There can be but little doubt that this refers to his "sons," and not to himself - though the singular suffix in the word (ידיו yâdāŷ), "his hands" is used. But the singular is sometimes used instead of the plural. The word rendered "goods" (און 'ôn), means "strength, power, and then wealth;" and the idea here is, that the hands of his sons would be compelled to give back the property which the father had unjustly acquired. Instead of retaining and enjoying it, they would be compelled to make restitution, and thus be reduced to penury and want.

10. seek to please—"Atone to the poor" (by restoring the property of which they had been robbed by the father) [De Wette]. Better than English Version, "The children" are reduced to the humiliating condition of "seeking the favor of those very poor," whom the father had oppressed. But Umbreit translates as Margin.

his hands—rather, "their (the children's) hands."

their goods—the goods of the poor. Righteous retribution! (Ex 20:5).

Shall seek to please the poor; either,

1. To get some small relief from them in their extreme necessity. Or rather,

2. Lest they should revenge themselves of them for the great and many injuries which their father did them, or seek to the magistrate for reparations.

His hands shall restore their goods, by the sentence of the judge, to whom the oppressed poor will appeal, notwithstanding all their entreaties and endeavours to dissuade them from so-doing. His children shall seek to please the poor,.... In this and some following verses the miserable state of a wicked man is described, and which begins with his children, who are often visited in wrath for their parents' sins, especially when they tread in their steps, and follow their example; and it is an affliction to parents to see their children in distress, and particularly on their account, and even to be threatened with it. According to our version, the sense of this clause is, that after a wicked man's death his children shall seek to gain the good will and favour of the poor who have been oppressed by him, that they may not reproach them, or take revenge on them, or apply to the civil magistrate to have justice done them; but Jarchi renders the words,

"the poor shall oppress or destroy his children;''

and so the margin of our Bible, who, being enraged with the ill usage of their parents, shall fall upon them in great wrath, and destroy them, Proverbs 28:3; and the same Jewish writer restrains the words to the men of Sodom, who were oppressive and cruel to the poor; or rather the sense is, that the children of the wicked man shall be reduced to such extreme poverty, that they shall even seek relief of the poor, and supplicate and entreat them to give them something out of their small pittance; with which others in a good measure agree, who render the words, "his children shall please, being poor" (n); it shall be a pleasure and satisfaction to those they have been injurious to, to see their children begging their bread from door to door, see Psalm 109:5;

and his hands shall restore their goods: or "for his hands", &c. (o); and so are a reason why his children shall be so reduced after his death as to need the relief of others, because their parent, in his lifetime, was obliged to make restitution of his ill gotten goods, so that in the end he had nothing to leave his children at his death; for this restitution spoken of is not voluntary, but forced. Sephorno thinks reference is had to the Egyptians lending jewels and other riches to the Israelites, whereby they were obliged to repay six hundred thousand men for their service.

(n) "filii ejus placabunt, mendici", Montanus. (o) So the English annotator.

His children shall {c} seek to please the poor, and his hands shall {d} restore their goods.

(c) While the father through ambition and tyranny oppressed the poor, the children through poverty and misery will seek favour from the poor.

(d) So that the thing which he has taken away by violence will be restored again by force.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
10. His children shall seek to please] Or, seek the favour of. The margin is possible, The poor shall oppress his children, but less suitable.

restore their goods] Rather, his goods. He shall give back his wealth which he has gotten by unlawful and violent means. The first clause of Job 20:10 is closely connected with Job 20:9, and paints the abject condition of the sinner’s children after his death; the second clause of Job 20:10 and Job 20:11 return to the idea of the sinner’s destruction and assume that he is in life.Verse 10. - His children shall seek to please the poor. Another rendering is, "The poor shall oppress his children," since the meaning of the verb יְרַצּוּ is doubtful. But the translation of the Authorized Version seems preferable. His children will curry favour with the poor, either by making restitution to them on account of their father's injuries, or simply because they are friendless, and desire to ingratiate themselves with some one. And his hands shall restore their goods (comp. vers. 15 and 18). He himself will be so crushed and broken in spirit that he will give back with his own hands the goods whereof he has deprived the poor. The restitution, i.e., will be made, in many cases, not by the oppressor's children, but by the oppressor himself. 1 Then began Zophar the Naamathite, and said:

2 Therefore do my thoughts furnish me with a reply,

And indeed by reason of my feeling within me.

3 The correction of my reproach I must hear,

Nevertheless the spirit of my understanding informeth me.

4 Knowest thou this which is from everlasting,

Since man was placed upon the earth:

5 That the triumphing of the evil-doer is not long,

And the joy of the godless is but for a moment?

All modern expositors take Job 20:2 as an apology for the opposition which follows, and the majority of them consider בּעבוּר as elliptical for בעבור זאת, as Tremell., Piscator, and others have done, partly (but wrongly) by referring to the Rebia mugrasch. Ewald observes: "בעבור stands without addition, because this is easily understood from the כן in לכן." But although this ellipsis is not inadmissible (comp. לכן equals לכן אשׁר, Job 34:25; כעל, Isaiah 59:18), in spite of it Job 20:2 furnishes no meaning that can be accepted. Most expositors translate: "and hence the storm within me" (thus e.g., Ewald); but the signification perturbatio animi, proposed by Schultens for חוּשׁי, after the Arab. ḥâš, is too remote from the usage of Hebrew. Moreover, this Arab. ḥâš signifies prop. to scare, hunt, of game; not, however: to be agitated, to storm, - a signification which even the corresponding Hebr. חוּשׁ, properare, does not support. Only a few expositors (as Umbreit, who translates: because of my storm within me) take בעבור (which occurs only this once in the book of Job) as praepos., as it must be taken in consideration of the infin. which follows (comp. Exodus 9:16; Exodus 20:20; 1 Samuel 1:6; 2 Samuel 10:3). Further, לכן (only by Umbreit translated by "yet," after the Arab. lâkin, lâkinna, which it never signifies in Hebr., where ל is not equals לא, but equals ל with Kametz before the tone) with that which follows is referred by several expositors to the preceding speech of Job, e.g., Hahn: "under such circumstances, if thou behavest thus;" by most, however, it is referred to Job 20:3, e.g., Ew.: "On this account he feels called upon by his thoughts to answer, and hence his inward impulse leaves him no rest: because he hears from Job a contemptuous wounding reproof of himself." In other words: in consequence of the reproach which Job casts upon him, especially with his threat of judgment, Zophar's mind and feelings fall into a state of excitement, and give him an answer to which he now gives utterance. This prospective sense of לכן may at any rate be retained, though בעבור is taken as a preposition (wherefore ... and indeed on account of my inward commotion); but it is far more natural that the beginning of Zophar's speech should be connected with the last word of Job's. Job 20:2 may really be so understood if we connect חושׁי, not with Arab. ḥâš, חושׁ, to excite, to make haste (after which also Saad. and Aben-Ezra: on account of my inward hastening or urging), but with Arab. ḥs, to feel; in this meaning chsh is usual in all the Semitic dialects, and is even biblical also; for Ecclesiastes 2:25 is to be translated: who hath feeling (pleasure) except from Him (read ממנו)? i.e., even in pleasure man is not free, but has conditions fixed by God.

With לכן (used as in Job 42:3) Zophar draws an inference from Job's conduct, esp. from the turn which his last speech has taken, which, as ישׁיבוּני שׂעיפּי

(Note: Thus it is to be read according to the Masoretic note, ומלא לית (i.e., plene, as nowhere else), which occurs in Codd., as is also attested by Kimchi in his Gramm., Moznajim, p. 8; Aben-Ezra in his Gramm., Zachoth 1, b; and the punctuator Jekuthil, in his Darche ha-Nikkud (chapter on the letters יהוא).)

affirms, urges him involuntarily and irresistibly forward, and indeed, as he adds with Waw explic.: on account of the power of feeling dwelling in him, by which he means both his sense of truth and his moral feeling, in general the capacity of direct perception, not perception that is only attained after long reflection. On שׂעיפי, of thoughts which, as it were, branch out, vid., on Job 4:13, and Psychol. S. 181. השׁיב signifies, as everywhere, to answer, not causative, to compel to answer. חוּשׁי is n. actionis in the sense of רגישׁתּי (Targ.), or הרגישׁי (Ralbag), which also signifies "my feeling (αἴσθησις)," and the combination חושׁי בי is like Job 4:21; Job 6:13. Wherein the inference consists in self-evident, and proceeds from Job 20:4. In Job 20:3 expression is given to the ground of the conclusion intended in לכן: the chastisement of my dishonour, i.e., which tends to my dishonour (comp. Isaiah 53:5, chastisement which conduces to our peace), I must hear (comp. on this modal signification of the future, e.g., Job 17:2); and in Job 20:3 Zophar repeats what he has said in Job 20:2, only somewhat differently applied: the spirit, this inner light (vid., Job 32:8; Psychol. S. 154, f), answers him from the perception which is peculiar to himself, i.e., out of the fulness of this perception it furnishes him with information as to what is to be thought of Job with his insulting attacks, viz., (this is the substance of the השׁיב of the thoughts, and of the ענות of the spirit), that in this conduct of Job only his godlessness is manifest. This is what he warningly brings against him, Job 20:4 : knowest thou indeed (which, according to Job 41:1; 1 Kings 21:19, sarcastically is equivalent to: thou surely knowest, or in astonishment: what dost thou not know?!) this from the beginning, i.e., this law, which has been in operation from time immemorial (or as Ew.: hoccine scis aeternum esse, so that מני־עד is not a virtual adj., but virtual predicate-acc.), since man was placed (שׂים infin., therefore prop., since one has placed man) upon the earth (comp. the model passage, Deuteronomy 4:32), that the exulting of the wicked is מקּרוב, from near, i.e., not extending far, enduring only a short time (Arab. qrı̂b often directly signifies brevis); and the joy of the godless עדי־רגע, only for a moment, and continuing no longer?

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