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. Job 20:10 6 If his aspiration riseth to the heavens,

And he causeth his head to touch the clouds:

7 Like his dung he perisheth for ever;

Those who see him say: Where is he?

8 As a dream he flieth away, and they cannot find him;

And he is scared away as a vision of the night.

9 The eye hath seen him, and never again,

And his place beholdeth him no more.

10 His children must appease the poor,

And his hands give up his wealth.

11 His bones were full of youthful vigour;

Now it is laid down with him in the dust.

If the exaltation of the evil-doer rises to heaven, and he causes his head to reach to the clouds, i.e., to touch the clouds, he notwithstanding perishes like his own dung. We are here reminded of what Obadiah, Job 20:4, says of Edom, and Isaiah, Isaiah 14:13-15, says of the king of Babylon. שׂיא is equivalent to נשׂיא, like שׂוא, Psalm 89:10 equals נשׂוא; the first weak radical is cast away, as in כּילי equals נכילי, fraudulentus, machinator, Isaiah 32:5, and according to Olsh. in שׁיבה equals ישׁיבה, 2 Samuel 19:33. הגּיע is to be understood as causative (at least this is the most natural) in the same manner as in Isaiah 25:12, and freq. It is unnecessary, with Ew., Hirz., and Hlgst., after Schultens, to transl. כגללו, Job 20:7, according to the Arab. jlâl (whence the name Gell-ed-dn): secundum majestatem suam, or with Reiske to read בגללו, in magnificentia sua, and it is very hazardous, since the Hebrew גלל has not the meaning of Arab. jll, illustrem esse. Even Schultens, in his Commentary, has retracted the explanation commended in his Animadv., and maintained the correctness of the translation, sicut stercus suum (Jer. sicut sterquilinium), which is also favoured by the similar figurative words in 1 Kings 14:10 : as one burneth up (not: brushes away) dung (הגּלל), probably cow-dung as fuel, until it is completely gone. גּללו (or גּללו with an audible Shev) may be derived from גּלל, but the analogy of צללו favours the primary form גּל (Ew. 255, b); on no account is it גּלל. The word is not low, as Ezekiel 4:12, comp. Zephaniah 1:17, shows, and the figure, though revolting, is still very expressive; and how the fulfilment is to be thought of may be seen from an example from 2 Kings 9:37, according to which, "as dung upon the face of the field shall it be, so that they cannot say: this is Jezebel."

(Note: In Arabic, gille (גּלּה) and gelle (גּלּה) is the usual and preferred fuel (hence used as synon. of hhattab) formed of the dung of cows, and not indeed yoke-oxen (baqar 'ammle), because they have more solid fodder, which produces no material for the gelle, but from cattle that pasture in the open fields (baqar bat.tle), which are almost entirely milking cows. This dung is collected by women and children in the spring from the pastures as perfectly dry cakes, which have the green colour of the grass. Every husbandman knows that this kind of dung - the product of a rapid, one might say merely half, digestion, even when fresh, but especially when dry - is perfectly free from smell. What is collected is brought in baskets to the forming or pressing place (mattba'a, מטבּעה), where it is crumbled, then with water made into a thick mass, and, having been mixed with chopped straw, is formed by the women with the hand into round cakes, about a span across, and three fingers thick. They resemble the tanners' tan-cakes, only they are not square. Since this compound has the form of a loaf it is called qurss (which also signifies a loaf of bread); and since a definite form is given to it by the hand, it is called ttabu' (טבּוּע), collective ttbbi', which צפוּעי (צפיעי), Ezekiel 4:15, resembles in meaning; for ssaf', צפע (cogn. ssafhh, צפח), signifies to beat anything with the palm of the hand. First spread out, then later on piled up, the gelle lies the whole summer in the mattba'a. The domes (qubeb) are not formed until a month before the rainy season, i.e., a circular structure is built up of the cakes skilfully placed one upon another like bricks; it is made from six to eight yards high, gradually narrowed and finished with a vaulted dome, whence this structure has its name, qubbe (קבּה). Below it measures about eight or ten paces, it is always hollow, and is filled from beneath by means of an opening which serves as a door. The outside of the qubbe is plastered over with a thick solution of dung; and this coating, when once dried in the sun, entirely protects the building, which is both storehouse and store, against the winter rains. When they begin to use the fuel, they take from the inside first by means of the doorway, and afterwards (by which time the heavy rains are over) they use up the building itself, removing the upper part first by means of a ladder. By the summer the qubbe has disappeared. Many large households have three or four of these stores. Where walled-in courts are spacious, as is generally the case, they stand within; where not, outside. The communities bordering on the desert, and exposed to attacks from the Arabs, place them close round their villages, which gives them a peculiar appearance. When attacked, the herds are driven behind these buildings, and the peasants make their appearance between them with their javelins. Seetzen reckons the gelle among the seven characteristics of the district of Haurn (Basan).

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