Job 33:7
Behold, my terror shall not make you afraid, neither shall my hand be heavy on you.
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(7) Neither shall my hand be heavy upon theei.e., I will deal gently with thee, and not be harsh.

33:1-7 Job had desired a judge to decide his appeal. Elihu was one according to his wish, a man like himself. If we would rightly convince men, it must be by reason, not by terror; by fair argument, not by a heavy hand.Behold my terror shall not make thee afraid - Job had earnestly desired to carry his cause directly before God, but he had expressed the apprehension that he would overawe him by his majesty, so that he would not be able to manage his plea with the calmness and self-possession which were desirable. He had, therefore, expressed it as his earnest wish, that if he were so permitted, God would not take advantage of his majesty and power to confound him; see the notes at Job 13:21. Elihu now says, that the wish of Job in this could be amply gratified. Though he spake in the name of God, and it might be considered that the case was fairly carried before him, yet he was also a man. He was the fellow, the equal with Job. He was made of the same clay, and he could not overawe him as the Almighty himself might do. There would be, therefore, in his case all the advantage of carrying the cause directly up to God, and yet none of the disadvantage which Job apprehended, and which must ensue when a mere man undertook to manage his own cause with the Almighty.

Neither shall my hand be heavy upon, thee - Alluding, evidently, to what Job had said, Job 13:21, that the hand of God was heavy upon him, so that he could not conduct his cause in such a manner as to do justice to himself. He had asked, therefore (see the notes at that place), as a special favor, if he was permitted to carry his cause before God, that his hand would be so far lightened that he could be able to state his arguments with the force which they required. Elihu says now that that wish could be gratified. Though he was in the place of God, yet he was a man, and his hand would not be upon him to crush him down so that he could not do justice to himself. The noun rendered "hand" (אכף 'ekeph) does not elsewhere occur. The verb אכף 'âkaph occurs once in Proverbs 16:26, where it is rendered "craveth" - "He that laboreth, laboreth for himself; for his mouth craveth it of him" - where the margin is boweth unto.

The word in Arabic means to lead a beast of burden; to bend, to make to bow under a lead; and then to impel, to urge on; and hence, it means, "his mouth, that is, hunger, impels, or urges him on to labor." In like manner the meaning of the word here (אכף 'ekeph) may be a lead or burden, meaning "my lead, i. e., my weight, dignity, authority, shall not be burdensome or oppressive to you." But the parallel place in Job 13:21, is "hand," and that meaning seems to be required here. Kimchi supposes it is the same as כף kaph - hand, and the Septuagint has so rendered it, ἡ χείρ μου hē cheir mou. In the view of the speech of Elihu thus far, we cannot but remark that there is much that is unique, and especially that he lays decided claim to inspiration. Though speaking for God, yet he was in human nature, and Job might speak to him as a friend, unawed and unterrifled by any dread of overwhelming majesty and power.

On what grounds Elihu based these high pretensions does not appear, and his claim to them is the more remarkable from his youth. It does not require the aid of a very lively imagination to fancy a resemblance between him and the Lord Jesus - the great mediator between God and man - and were that mode of interpretation which delights to find types and figures every where a mode that could be vindicated, there is no character in the Old Testament that would more obviously suggest that of the Redeemer than the character of Elihu. His comparative youth, his modesty, his humility, would suggest it. The fact that he comes in to utter his sentiments where age and wisdom had failed to suggest the truth, and when pretending sages were confounded and silenced, would suggest it. The fact that he claims to be in the place of God, and that a cause might be managed before him as if it were before God and yet that he was a man like others, and that no advantage would be taken to overawe by mere majesty and power, are all circumstances that would constitute a strong and vivid resemblance. But I see no evidence that this was the design of the introduction of the character of Elihu, and interesting as the comparison might be, and desirable as it may seem that the book of Job should be found to contain some reference to the great work of mediation, yet the just and stern laws of interpretation exclude such a reference in the absence of proof, and do not allow us to luxuriate in the conceptions of fancy, however pious the reflections might be, or to search for typical characters where the Spirit of inspiration has not revealed them as such, however interesting or edifying might be the contemplation.

7. hand—alluding to Job's words (Job 13:21). Which was the condition of that disputation which thou didst offer to undertake with God, Job 9:34 13:21. Behold, my terror shall not make thee afraid,.... To come near, join issue in a debate, and speak freely; this Job had wished for, and desired of God that his fear might not terrify him, and his dread not make him afraid, and then he could talk and reason freely with him, Job 9:34; now Job had nothing to fear from Elihu, he was a man and not God, with whom there was no terrible majesty, as with God; he was but a clod of clay, and had nothing in him or about him to strike terror into him; he was no great personage, as a king or prince, nor in any civil authority, nor had so much as age to command an awe, much less could inject dread and terror:

neither shall my hand be heavy upon thee; which is not to be literally understood; Job could be in no fear of that, nor Elihu guilty of such rudeness; but figuratively, that he should not seek to afflict and distress him, or add to his affliction, and make it heavier, by hard words, severe reflections, and cruel reproaches; he seems to refer to Job 13:21; the Targum is,

"my burden upon time shall not be heavy;''

he promises not to aggravate things, but make them as easy as they would admit of.

Behold, my terror shall not make thee afraid, neither shall my hand {c} be heavy upon thee.

(c) I will not handle you so roughly as these others have done.

7. Job had often complained that the terror and majesty of God overpowered him and made it impossible for him to plead his cause and shew his rectitude; comp. ch. Job 9:34, Job 13:21.

my hand be heavy] The term hand may be an uncommon form of the Heb. word having that sense, or it may perhaps mean burden, pressure; comp. ch. Job 13:21.Verse 7. - My terror shall not make thee afraid. Thou canst feel no alarm at me; I cannot terrify thee, as God would (Job 6:4; Job 7:14; Job 9:34. etc.). Neither shall my hand (literally, my pack-saddle) be heavy upon thee. Thou wilt not feel my presence a burden, or be crushed under the weight of my words. 1 But nevertheless, O Job, hear my speeches,

And hearken to all my words.

2 Behold now, I have opened my mouth,

My tongue speaketh in my palate.

3 Sincere as my heart are my utterances,

And knowledge that is pure my lips declare.

The issue of the impartial discussion which Elihu designs to effect, is subject to this one condition, that Job listens to it, and observes not merely this or that, but the whole of its connected contents; and in this sense ואוּלם, which is used just as in Job 1:11; Job 11:5; Job 12:7; Job 13:4; Job 14:18; Job 17:10, in the signification verumtamen, stands at the head of this new turn in his speech. Elihu addresses Job, as none of the previous speakers have done, by name. With הנּה־נא (as Job 13:18), he directs Job's observation to that which he is about to say: he has already opened his mouth, his tongue is already in motion, - circumstantial statement, which solemnly inaugurate what follows with a consciousness of its importance. Job has felt the absence of אמרי־ישׁר, Job 6:25, in the speeches of the three; but Elihu can at the outset ensure his word being "the sincerity of his heart," i.e., altogether heartily well meant: and - thus it would be to be translated according to the accentuation - the knowledge of my lips, they (my lips) utter purely. But "the knowledge of the lips" is a notion that seems strange with this translation, and בּרוּר is hardly intended thus adverbially. דּעת, contrary to the accentuation, is either taken as the accusative of the obj., and בּרוּר as the acc. of the predicate (masc. as Proverbs 2:10; Proverbs 14:6): knowledge my lips utter pure; or interpreted, if one is not willing to depart from the accentuation, with Seb. Schmid: scientiam labiorum meorum quod attinet (the knowledge proceeding from my lips), puram loquentur sc. labia mea. The notions of purity and choice coincide in ברור (comp. Arab. ibtarra, to separate one's self; asfa, to prove one's self pure, and to select). The perff., Job 33:2, describe what is begun, and so, as relatively past, extending into the present.

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