Job 36:24
Remember that you magnify his work, which men behold.
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(24) Which men behold.—Some render it, “Whereof men sing,” but the other seems to suit the context best.

Job 36:24-25. Remember — Call to mind this thy duty; that thou magnify his work — Every work which he doth; do not condemn any of his providential works, but adore them as done with admirable wisdom and justice. Behold — With admiration and astonishment. Every man may see it — Namely, his work last mentioned. The power, and wisdom, and greatness of God are so manifest in all his works, that all who are not stupid must see and acknowledge them. Man may behold it afar off — The works of God are so great and conspicuous, that they may be seen at a great distance. Hence Elihu proceeds to give some instances, in the works of nature and common providence. His general aim is to show, 1st, That God is the first cause and supreme director of all the creatures; whom therefore we ought with all humility and reverence to adore: 2d, That it is presumption in us to prescribe to him in his special providence toward men, when the operations even of common providence about the meteors are so mysterious and unaccountable.36:24-33 Elihu endeavours to fill Job with high thought of God, and so to persuade him into cheerful submission to his providence. Man may see God's works, and is capable of discerning his hand in them, which the beasts are not, therefore they ought to give him the glory. But while the worker of iniquity ought to tremble, the true believer should rejoice. Children should hear with pleasure their Father's voice, even when he speaks in terror to his enemies. There is no light but there may be a cloud to intercept it. The light of the favour of God, the light of his countenance, the most blessed light of all, even that light has many a cloud. The clouds of our sins cause the Lord to his face, and hinder the light of his loving-kindness from shining on our souls.Remember that thou magnify his work - Make this a great and settled principle, to remember that God is "great" in all that he does. He is exalted far above us, and all his works are on a scale of vastness corresponding to his nature, and in all our attempts to judge of him and his doings, we should bear this in remembrance. He is not to be judged by the narrow views which we apply to the actions of people, but by the views which ought to be taken when we remember that he presides over the vast universe, and that as the universal Parent, he will consult the welfare of the whole. In judging of his doings, therefore, we are not to place ourselves in the center, or to regard ourselves as the "whole" or the creation, but we are to remember that there are other great interests to be regarded, and that his plans will be in accordance with the welfare of the whole. One of the best rules for taking a proper estimate of God is that proposed here by Elihu - to remember that he is great.

Which men behold - The Vulgate renders this, "de quo cecinerunt viri" - "concerning which men sing." The Septuagint, ὧν ἦρξαν ἄνδρες hōn ērxan andres - "over which men rule." Schultens accords with the Vulgate. So Coverdale renders it, "Whom all men love and praise." So Herder and Noyes understand it, "Which men celebrate with songs." This difference of interpretation arises from the ambiguity of the Hebrew word (שׁררוּ shorerû) some deriving it from שׁור shûr, "to go round about, and then to survey, look upon, examine"; and some from שׁיר shı̂yr, "to sing, to celebrate." The word will admit of either interpretation, and either will suit the connection. The sense of "seeing" those works, however, better agrees with what is said in the following verse, and perhaps better suits the connection. The object of Elihu is not to fix the attention on the fact that people "celebrate" the works of God, but to turn "the eyes to the visible creation," as a proof of the greatness of the Almighty.

24. Instead of arraigning, let it be thy fixed principle to magnify God in His works (Ps 111:2-8; Re 15:3); these, which all may "see," may convince us that what we do not see is altogether wise and good (Ro 1:20).

behold—As "see" (Job 36:25), shows; not, as Maurer, "sing," laud (see on [541]Job 33:27).

Remember; call to mind this thy duty, and take this matter into thy more serious thoughts, and it will prevent thy horrible mistakes and miscarriages.

That; so this Hebrew particle is used here, Job 36:10 3:12.

His work; or, his works, the singular number being put for the plural, every work which he doth; do not condemn any of his providential works towards thee or others, but adore and glorify them, as done with admirable wisdom, and justice, and faithfulness.

Which men behold, to wit, with admiration and astonishment; which by their greatness and glory draw the eyes and minds of all men towards them; which deserve to be entertained with adoration and reverence of all men, not with censure and reproach. Remember that thou magnify his work,.... Or his works; his works of creation and providence, which are great in themselves, and declare the greatness of God; and which, though they cannot be made greater than they are, men may be said to magnify them when they ascribe them to God, and magnify him on account of them; when they think and speak well of them, and give glory to God: and particularly by his work may be meant the chastisement of his people, which is a rod in his hand, which he appoints, and with which he smites; it is his own doing, and he may do what he pleases this way; and it becomes his people to be still and patient because he does it; and then do they magnify this work of his, when they bear it patiently, quietly submit to it, and humble themselves under the mighty hand of God;

which men behold: for the works of God are visible, particularly the works of creation, and the glory of God in them; which men of wisdom and understanding behold with admiration and praise; and so the Targum is,

"which righteous men praise;''

and some derive the word here used from a root which signifies to "sing", and so may be understood of men's celebrating the works of God in songs of praise; though his work here may chiefly design the afflictions he lays on his people, and particularly which he had laid upon Job, which were so visible, and the hand of God in them was so clearly to be seen, that men easily beheld it and took notice of it.

Remember that thou magnify his work, which men behold.
24. which men behold] Rather, which men do sing, that is, celebrate with praise.Verse 24. - Remember that thou magnify his work. Instead of murmuring, Job should "magnify God's work." He should recognize the mercy of God, even in his own afflictions, and praise him for it. Which men behold. Men are looking on, anxiously considering Job's sufferings; he is a spectacle to them, as the apostles were to men and angels (1 Corinthians 4:9), and the more reason therefore that he should, by patient endurance, by submission and confession, cause his sufferings to redound to the glory and honour of God. 16 And He even bringeth thee out of the jaws of distress

To a broad place, whose ground hath no straitness,

And the adorning of thy table shall be full of fatness.

17 Yet thou art become full of the judging of the evil-doer:

Judging and judgment lay hold on one another!

18 For let not anger indeed entice thee to scorning,

And let not the greatness of the ransom mislead thee.

With Job 36:16 Elihu passes over to the application to Job of what he said in the preceding strophe. Since it is usual to place אף (like גּם and אך) at the beginning of the sentence, although not belonging to the member of the sentence which immediately follows, ואף הסיתך for והסית אף אתך cannot be remarkable. The praet. הסיתך is not promissory, but Elihu says with what design God has decreed the present suffering for Job. הסית מן is like 2 Chronicles 18:31 : out of distress (צר for צר by Rebia magnum), which has him in its jaws, and threatens to swallow him, God brings him away to great prosperity; a thought which Elihu expresses in the imagery of the Psalms of a broad place and a bountiful table (comp. e.g., Psalm 4:2; Psalm 23:5). רחב is locative, and לא־מוּצק תּחתּיה is either a relative clause: whose beneath (ground) is not straitened, no-straitness (in which case מוּצק would not be constr. from the n. hophal. מוּצק, Isa.Isa 9:1, but absol. after the form מחנק, Job 7:15, Ew. 160, c, Anm. 4), Saad. Arab. lâ ḍı̂q fı̂ mûḍ‛hâ (cujus in loco non angustiae); or it is virtually an adj.: without (לא equals בּלא, as Job 34:24), comp. on Job 12:24) straitness of what is beneath them, eorum quae sub se habet (comp. on Job 28:5). רחב is fem., like רחוב, Daniel 9:25. A special clause takes the place of the locative, Job 36:16 : and the settling or spreading, i.e., the provision (from נוּח, to come down gradually, to seat one's self) of thy table shall be full of fatness. מלא (whether it be adj. or verb) is treated by attraction, according to the gender of the governed noun; and it is unnecessary, with Rosenm. and others, to derive נחת from נחת (Aram. for ירד).

In Job 36:17, דּין is intended of Job's negative judgment concerning God and His dealings (comp. Psalm 76:9, where it signifies a judicial decision, and Proverbs 22:10, where it signifies a wrangling refusal of a fair decision). Job 36:17 is not a conditional clause (Hahn), in which case the praet. hypothet. would have a prominent position, but an adversative predicative clause: but (nevertheless) thou art full of the judging of the evil-doer (evil judging); after which, just as ἀσυνδέτως as Job 36:14, the sad issue in which this judging after the manner of evil-doers results is expressed: such judging and judgment border closely upon one another. Rd., Dietr., and Schlottm. have wrongly reproduced this idea, discerned by Ges., when they translate: judgment and sentence (guilt and punishment) shall seize thee. יתמכוּ, prehendunt scil. se (Ebr.: put forth the hand), is used like the Aram. סמך, to draw nearer, fasten together (Rabb. סמוּך, near at hand), Arab. tamâsaka (from Arab. msk equals סמך, as e.g., hanash equals נחשׁ). In Job 36:18 we leave the signification thick milk or cream (חמה equals חמאה, as Job 29:6) to those who persuade themselves that cream can be metaphorically equivalent to superfluity (Ew., Hirz., Vaih., Hlgst.). Renan's translation: N'espre pas dtourner la colre de Dieu par une amende, we also leave as a simple puzzle to its discoverer, who, with this one exception, is destitute of thoughts proper to the book of Job. In general, the thought, "do not imagine by riches, by a great ransom, to be able to satisfy the claims of God," is altogether out of place here. Moreover, חמה, which, as e.g., דּאגה, Proverbs 12:25 (Ew. 174, g), is construed as masc., cannot be understood of God's wrath, since the poet by הסית will not at one time have ascribed to God a well-meant incitation, at another an enticement in malam partem. That which allures is Job's own חמה, and that not the excitement of his affliction (Hahn), but of his passion; comp. אף, Job 36:13. שׂפק is, however, to be explained according to Job 34:37, comp. Job 27:23 (clapping of hands equals derision); and כּפר signifies reconciliation or expiation, as Job 33:24. Elihu admonishes Job not to allow himself to be drawn by the heat of passion into derision, or to deride; nor to be allured from the right way by the ransom which is required of him as the price of restoration to happiness, viz., humble submission to the divine chastisement, as though this ransom were exceeding great. The connection is clear: an adverse verdict (דּין) and condemnation (משׁפּט) are closely connected; for (כּי) hastiness of temper, let it not (פּן( ton ti ) lead thee astray ... thou wouldst not escape the judgment of God!

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