And that you should visit him every morning, and try him every moment?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Job 7:18. And that thou shouldest visit him — Namely, punish or chastise him, as the word visiting is often used; every morning — That is, every day; the word morning, which is the beginning of the day, being put, by a synecdoche, for the whole day, as the evening (Job 7:4) is put for the whole night; and try him every moment — That is, afflict him, which is often called trying, because it does indeed try a man’s faith, and patience, and perseverance. But this and the former verse may possibly be understood of mercies as well as afflictions. Having declared his loathing of life, and his passionate desire of death, and urged it with this consideration, that the days of his life were mere vanity; he may be considered as pursuing his argument with this expostulation, What is man, that vain, foolish creature, that thou shouldest magnify, or regard, or visit him with thy mercy and blessings; that thou shouldest so far honour and regard him, as by thy visitation to preserve his spirit, or hold his soul in life; and try him, which God doth, not only by his afflictions, but also by prosperity, and both inward and outward blessings? That thou shouldest observe his motions every moment, as in care for him, and jealous over him?
Every morning - Why is there no intermission even for a day? Why does not God allow one morning, or one moment, to pass without inflicting pain on a creature so feeble and so frail?
And try him - Or, prove him; to wit, by afflictions.Visit him; to wit, punish or chasten him, as the word to visit, or visiting, is oft used, as Exodus 20:5 32:34 34:7. Every morning, i.e. every day. But he mentions the morning, either because that is the beginning of the day, and so is put synecdochically for the whole day, as the evening, Job 7:4, is put for the whole night; or he speaks of God after the manner of men, who rest and sleep in the night, but in the morning rise and go about their business, and visit or inspect those persons and things which they have a respect for or care of.
Try him, i.e. afflict him, which is oft called trying, because it doth indeed try a man’s faith, and patience, and perseverance. But this and the former verse may possibly be otherwise understood, not of afflictions, but of mercies. Having declared his loathing of life, and his passionate desire of death, and urged it with this consideration, that the days of his life were mere vanity, he now pursues it with this expostulation. What is man, that vain, foolish creature, that thou shouldst magnify, or regard, or visit him, (to wit, with thy mercy and blessings, of which those words are commonly used, i.e. that thou shouldst so far honour and regard him, as by thy visitation to preserve his spirit, or hold his soul in life,) and
try him? which God doth not only by afflictions, but also by prosperity and outward blessings, which commonly detect a man’s hypocrisy, and discover that corruption which before lay hid in his heart. Therefore, O Lord, do not thus magnify and visit me with thy mercy, but take away my life. Luke 1:68; and the Lord visits them, by calling them by his grace, see Acts 15:14; by communing and conversing with them in a free and friendly manner; by helping right early, and by renewing his mercies to them every morning, all which is matter of admiration: or else the word may be taken in a different sense, as it sometimes is, either for punishing man for sin, as in Exodus 20:5; or for chastising the Lord's people, which is a visiting them, though in a fatherly way, and in love, and which is often and frequently done, even every morning, see Psalm 89:32; and so the sense agrees with the former, though by some given with this difference thus, "what is man, that thou shouldest magnify him?" or make him great both in things temporal and spiritual, as he had made Job in the time of his prosperity, which he may have respect unto; having been the greatest man in all the east, with respect to both characters, whereby it was plain he had interest in the love and affections of the heart of God; and "yet, notwithstanding, nevertheless, thou visitest him" (t), with afflictions and chastisements continually; which may seem strange, and look like a contradiction, that thou shouldest:
and try him every moment? by afflictive providences; in this way the Lord often tries the faith and patience, the fear and love, the hope and humility of his people, and all other graces, whereby they appear and shine the brighter, which was Job's case, see Job 23:10; and which he doubtless had in view in all he had said, and more particularly expostulates about in the following verses.And that thou shouldest visit him every morning, and try him every moment?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)18. The words of this verse recall Psalm 8:5; Psalm 144:3, the former of which passages at least must have been in the Author’s mind. The admiring gratefulness of the Psalmist that God condescended to visit man and gave him such a place in His estimation is parodied by Job, and the Psalmist’s words are made with bitter irony to express his wonder that God should occupy Himself continually with so slight a thing as man, and make him the object of His unceasing persecution.Verse 18. - And that thou shouldset visit him every morning, and try him every moment? Our whole life is a probation, not merely particular parts of it. God "tries us every moment" if not with afflictions, then with blessings; if not with pains, then with pleasures. He is with us all the day long, and all our life long, equally in his mercies and in his chastisements. But Job was probably thinking only of the latter.
That thou settest a watch over me?
13 For I said, My bed shall comfort me;
My couch shall help me to bear my complaint.
14 Then thou scaredst me with dreams,
And thou didst wake me up in terror from visions,
15 So that my soul chose suffocation,
Death rather than this skeleton.
16 I loathe it, I would not live alway;
Let me alone, for my days are breath.
Since a watch on the sea can only be designed to effect the necessary precautions at its coming forth from the shores, it is probable that the poet had the Nile in mind when he used ים, and consequently the crocodile by תּנּין. The Nile is also called ים in Isaiah 19:5, and in Homer ὠκεανός, Egyptian oham ( equals ὠκεανός), and is even now called (at least by the Bedouins) bahhr (Arab. bahr). The illustrations of the book, says von Gerlach correctly, are chiefly Egyptian. On the contrary, Hahn thinks the illustration is unsuitable of the Nile, because it is not watched on account of its danger, but its utility; and Schlottman thinks it even small and contemptible without assigning a reason. The figure is, however, appropriate. As watches are set to keep the Nile in channels as soon as it breaks forth, and as men are set to watch that they may seize the crocodile immediately he moves here or there; so Job says all his movements are checked at the very commencement, and as soon as he desires to be more cheerful he feels the pang of some fresh pain. In Job 7:13, ב after נשׂא is partitive, as Numbers 11:17; Mercier correctly: non nihil querelam meam levabit. If he hopes for such repose, it forthwith comes to nought, since he starts up affrighted from his slumber. Hideous dreams often disturb the sleep of those suffering with elephantiasis, says Avicenna (in Stickel, S. 170). Then he desires death; he wishes that his difficulty of breathing would increase to suffocation, the usual end of elephantiasis. מחנק is absolute (without being obliged to point it מחנק with Schlottm.), as e.g., מרמס, Isaiah 10:6 (Ewald, 160, c). He prefers death to these his bones, i.e., this miserable skeleton or framework of bone to which he is wasted away. He despises, i.e., his life, Job 9:21. Amid such suffering he would not live for ever. הבל, like רוּח, Job 7:7.
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