Job 22:7
Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink, and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
22:5-14 Eliphaz brought heavy charges against Job, without reason for his accusations, except that Job was visited as he supposed God always visited every wicked man. He charges him with oppression, and that he did harm with his wealth and power in the time of his prosperity.Thou hast not given water to the weary - That is, thou hast withheld the rites of hospitality - one of the most grievous offences which could be charged on an Arabian; compare the notes at Isaiah 21:14. In all the Oriental world, hospitality was regarded, and is still, as a duty of the highest obligation. 7. Hospitality to the weary traveller is regarded in the East as a primary duty (Isa 21:14). Surely thou hast been so hard-hearted as to deny a cup of cold water to those that needed and desired it. Water was ofttimes scarce and precious in those hot countries, and was appropriated to particular persons, without whose leave other persons might not take it.

To the weary, i.e. to him who by reason of hard labour or travel is weary and thirsty. So this word is used Proverbs 25:25.

From the hungry, to whom it was due by God’s law, Proverbs 3:27, which also was known to Job by the light of nature. Hereby he intimates the greatness of this sin of uncharitableness, by ranking it with heinous crimes; whereas Job (as he thought) esteemed it but a small fault, if any.

Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink,.... To a weary thirsty traveller, to whom in those hot countries cold water was very refreshing, and which in desert places was not to be had in common, or any where; rich men were possessed of their wells and fountains, and were kept for their own use, and it was a kindness and favour to obtain water of them; and yet a cup of cold water is one of the least favours to be given to a poor man, and to deny it him in distress was very inhuman, and was very far from Job's character:

and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry: bread, which strengthens man's heart, and is the staff of life, without which he cannot support; and this is not to be withheld from, but given even to an enemy when hungry; and to deny it to a poor neighbour in such circumstances is very cruel; the charge is, that Job would not give a poor hungry man a morsel of bread to eat; which must be false, being directly contrary to what he strongly asserts, Job 31:17.

Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink, and thou hast withholden bread from the hungry.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
7. Compare Job’s answer, ch. Job 31:16-17.

Verse 7. - Thou hast not given water to the weary to drink. To give water to the thirsty was regarded in the East as one of the most elementary duties of man to man. The self-justification of the dead in the Egyptian Hades contained the following passage: "I gave my bread to the hungry, and drink to him that was athirst; I clothed the naked with garments; I sheltered the wanderer" ('Ritual of the Dead,' ch. CXXV. § 38). The same claim appears continually on Egyptian tombs. "All men respected me," we read on one; "I gave water to the thirsty; I set the wanderer in his path; I took away the oppressor, and put a stop to violence" ('Non-Biblical Systems of Religion,' p. 46). In the proverbs assigned to Solomon, "which the men of Hezekiah copied out" (Proverbs 25:1), the duty was declared to be one owed even to enemies (see Proverbs 25:21, "If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink"). Isaiah notices it as praiseworthy in the Temanites (Eliphaz's people), that they "brought water to him that was thirsty and prevented with their bread him that fled" (Isaiah 21:14). Jael is praised for going further than this: He asked water, and she gave him milk; she brought forth butter in a lordly dish" (Judges 5:25). And thou hast withholden bread from the hungry. Later on Job absolutely denies this, as well as many of the other charges. "If I have withheld," he says, "the poor from their desire, or have caused the eyes of the widow to fail; or have eaten my morsel myself alone, and the fatherless hath not eaten thereof," then let mine arm fall from my shoulder-blade, and mine arm be broken from the bone" (Job 31:16-22). Job 22:7 6 For thou distrainedst thy brother without cause,

And the clothes of the naked thou strippedst off.

7 Thou gavest no water to the languishing,

And thou refusedst bread to the hungry.

8 And the man of the arm-the land was his,

And the honourable man dwelt therein.

9 Thou sentest widows away empty,

And the arms of the orphan are broken.

The reason of exceeding great suffering most be exceeding great sins. Job must have committed such sins as are here cited; therefore Eliphaz directly attributes guilt to him, since he thinks thus to tear down the disguise of the hypocrite. The strophe contains no reference to the Mosaic law: the compassionate Mosaic laws respecting duties towards widows and orphans, and the poor who pledge their few and indispensable goods, may have passed before the poet's mind; but it is not safe to infer it from the expression. As specific Mohammedan commandments among the wandering tribes even in the present day have no sound, so the poet dare not assume, in connection with the characters of his drama, any knowledge, of the Sinaitic law; and of this he remains conscious throughout: their standpoint is and remains that of the Abrahamic faith, the primary commands (later called the ten commands of piety, el-felâhh) of which were amply sufficient for stigmatizing that to which this strophe gives prominence as sin. It is only the force of the connection of the matter here which gives the futt. which follow כי a retrospective meaning. חבל is connected either with the accusative of the thing for which the pledge is taken, as in the law, which meets a response in the heart, Exodus 22:25.; or with the accus. of the person who is seized, as here אחיך; or, if this is really (as Br asserts) a mistake that has gained a footing, which has Codd. and old printed editions against it, rather אחיך. lxx, Targ., Syr., and Jer. read the word as plural. ערוּמים (from ערום), like γυμνοί, James 2:15, nudi (comp. Seneca, de beneficiis, v. 13: si quis male vestitum et pannosum videt, nudum se vidisse dicit), are, according to our mode of expression, the half-naked, only scantily (vid., Isaiah 20:2) clothed.

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