For the work of a man shall he render to him, and cause every man to find according to his ways.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)The work, i.e. the reward of his work, or according to his work. Job’s afflictions, though great and sharp, are not undeserved, but justly inflicted upon him, both for his original corruption, and for many actual transgressions, which are manifest to God, though Job, through his partiality, may not see them. And Job’s piety shall be recompensed, it may be, in this life, but undoubtedly in the next. And therefore piety is not unprofitable, as Job saith.
and cause every man to find according to his ways. Which is a truth frequently inculcated in the Scriptures; and will take place especially at the resurrection of the dead, which is for that purpose, and at the final judgment, by the righteous Judge of all; for, though wicked men may not be punished now according to their deserts, they will hereafter, which is sufficient to vindicate the justice of God: and as for the works and ways of good men, though God does not proceed according to them in the methods of his grace, they are not justified by them, nor called and saved according to them; for, though evil works deserve damnation, good works do not merit salvation; yet they are not neglected by the Lord; he is not unrighteous to forget them, and verily there is a reward for righteous men though it is not of debt but grace; and not for, but in keeping the commands of God, is this reward; even communion with him and peace in their souls, which they enjoy in, though not as arising from their keeping them; and at the last day, when their justification will be pronounced before men and angels, it will be according to their works of righteousness, not done by themselves, but done by Christ, in their room and stead and reckoned to them; for the obedience of Christ, by which they are made righteous, though imputed to them without works, is nothing else but a series of good works most perfectly done by Christ for them; and according to which the crown of righteousness in a righteous way will be given them by the righteous Judge. All which therefore is a full proof that no iniquity is, will, or can be committed by the Lord.For the work of a man shall he render unto him, and cause every man to find according to his ways.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 11. - For the work of a man shall he render unto him. God "rewardeth every man according to his work" (Psalm 62:13), renders to each one good or evil, according as his own deeds have been the one or the other. But this must be understood of the man's whole conduct, and God's entire treatment of him. Such an absolute rectitude of God's moral government, considered as a whole, is implied and involved in his absolute and perfect justice. And cause every man to find according to his ways. We "find according to our ways" when, having "ploughed iniquity, and sown wickedness, we reap the same" (Job 4:8), or when, on the other hand, having "sown in righteousness, we reap in mercy" (Hosea 10:12). Exact retribution is the law of God's rule; but the exactness cannot be seen, or tested, or demonstrated in this life. It will appear, however, and be recognized by all, at the consummation of all things.
"And God hath put aside my right.
6 "Shall I lie in spite of my right,
"Incurable is mine arrow without transgression."
7 Where is there a man like Job,
Who drinketh scorning like water,
8 And keepeth company with the workers of iniquity,
And walketh with wicked men,
9 So that he saith: "A man hath no profit
"From entering into fellowship with God"?!
That in relation to God, thinking of Him as a punishing judge, he is righteous or in the right, i.e., guiltless (צדקתּי with Pathach in pause, according to Ew. 93, c, from צדק equals צדק, but perhaps, comp. Proverbs 24:30; Psalm 102:26, because the Athnach is taken only as of the value of Zakeph), Job has said verbatim in Job 13:18, and according to meaning, Job 23:10; Job 27:7, and throughout; that He puts aside his right (the right of the guiltless, and therefore not of one coming under punishment): Job 27:2. That in spite of his right (על, to be interpreted, according to Schultens' example, just like Job 10:7; Job 16:17), i.e., although right is on his side, yet he must be accounted a liar, since his own testimony is belied by the wrathful form of his affliction, that therefore the appearance of wrong remains inalienably attached to him, we find in idea in Job 9:20 and freq. Elihu makes Job call his affliction חצּי, i.e., an arrow sticking in him, viz., the arrow of the wrath of God (on the objective suff. comp. on Job 23:2), after Job 6:4; Job 16:9; Job 19:11; and that this his arrow, i.e., the pain which it causes him, is incurably bad, desperately malignant without (בּלי as Job 8:11) פּשׁע, i.e., sins existing as the ground of it, from which he would be obliged to suppose they had thrust him out of the condition of favour, is Job's constant complaint (vid., e.g., Job 13:23.). Another utterance of Job closely connected with it has so roused Elihu's indignation, that he prefaces it with the exclamation of astonishment: Who is a man like Job, i.e., where in all the world (מי as 2 Samuel 7:23) has this Job his equal, who ... . The attributive clause refers to Job; "to drink scorn (here: blasphemy) like water," is, according to Job 15:16, equivalent to to give one's self up to mockery with delight, and to find satisfaction in it. ארח לחברה, to go over to any one's side, looks like a poeticized prose expression. ללכת is a continuation of the ארח, according to Ew. 351, c, but not directly in the sense "and he goes," but, as in the similar examples, Jeremiah 17:10; Jeremiah 44:19; 2 Chronicles 7:17, and freq., in the sense of: "he is in the act of going;" comp. on Job 36:20 and Habakkuk 1:17. The utterance runs: a man does not profit, viz., himself (on the use of סכן of persons as well as of things, vid., on Job 22:2), by his having joyous and familiar intercourse (בּרצתו, as little equivalent to בּרוּץ as in Psalm 50:18) with God. Job has nowhere expressly said this, but certainly the declaration in Job 9:22, in connection with the repeated complaints concerning the anomalous distribution of human destinies (vid., especially Job 21:7, Job 24:1), are the premises for such a conclusion. That Elihu, in Job 34:7, is more harsh against Job than the friends ever were (comp. e.g., the well-measured reproach of Eliphaz, Job 15:4), and that he puts words into Job's moth which occur nowhere verbatim in his speeches, is worked up by the Latin fathers (Jer., Philippus Presbyter, Beda,
(Note: Philippus Presbyter was a disciple of Jerome. His Comm. in Iobum is extant in many forms, partly epitomized, partly interpolated (on this subject, vid., Hieronymi Opp. ed. Vallarsi, iii. 895ff.). The commentary of Beda, dedicated to a certain Nectarius (Vecterius), is fundamentally that of this Philippus.)
Gregory) in favour of their unfavourable judgment of Elihu; the Greek fathers, however, are deprived of all opportunity of understanding him by the translation of the lxx (in which μυκτηρισμόν signifies the scorn of others which Job must swallow down, comp. Proverbs 26:6), which here perverts everything.
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