Job 8:2
How long will you speak these things? and how long shall the words of your mouth be like a strong wind?
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Job 8:2. How long wilt thou speak these things? &c. — Why dost thou persist to talk in this manner? and why are thy words thus vehement? As a strong wind which overturns all things without any moderation, and suffers nothing else to be heard, so thy boisterous and violent words will not permit the voice of truth and wisdom to be heard. 8:1-7 Job spake much to the purpose; but Bildad, like an eager, angry disputant, turns it all off with this, How long wilt thou speak these things? Men's meaning is not taken aright, and then they are rebuked, as if they were evil-doers. Even in disputes on religion, it is too common to treat others with sharpness, and their arguments with contempt. Bildad's discourse shows that he had not a favourable opinion of Job's character. Job owned that God did not pervert judgment; yet it did not therefore follow that his children were cast-aways, or that they did for some great transgression. Extraordinary afflictions are not always the punishment of extraordinary sins, sometimes they are the trials of extraordinary graces: in judging of another's case, we ought to take the favorable side. Bildad puts Job in hope, that if he were indeed upright, he should yet see a good end of his present troubles. This is God's way of enriching the souls of his people with graces and comforts. The beginning is small, but the progress is to perfection. Dawning light grows to noon-day.How long wilt thou speak these things? - The flyings of murmuring and complaint, such as he had uttered in the previous chapters.

The words of thy mouth be like a strong wind? - The Syriac and Arabic (according to Walton) render this, "the spirit of pride fill thy mouth." The Septuagint renders it, "The spirit of thy mouth is profuse of words" - πολυῤῥῆμον polurrēmon. But the common rendering is undoubtedly correct, and the expression is a very strong and beautiful one. His language of complaint and murmuring was like a tempest. It swept over all barriers, and disregarded all restraint. The same figure is found in Aristophanes, Ran. 872, as quoted by Schultens, Τυφὼς ἐχβαίειν παρασκενάξεται Tuphōs ekbainein paraskeuacetai - a tempest of words is preparing to burst forth. And in Silius Italicus, xxi. 581:

- qui tanta superbo

Facta sonas ore, et spumanti turbine perflas

Ignorantum aures.

The Chaldee renders it correctly רבא זעפא - a great tempest.

2. like a … wind?—disregarding restraints, and daring against God. i.e. Boisterous and violent, swelling and furious, opposing all persons and things that stand in thy way, not sparing either God or men. How long wilt thou speak these things?.... Either what he had delivered in the "third" chapter in cursing the day of his birth, and wishing for death, in which sentiments he still continued, and resolutely defended; or those expressed in the "two" preceding chapters, in answer to Eliphaz; this he said, as wondering that he should be able to continue his discourse to such a length, and to express himself with such vehemence, when his spirits might be thought to be so greatly depressed by his afflictions, and his body enfeebled by diseases; or as angry with him for his blasphemy against God, as he was ready to term it, his bold and daring speeches of him, and charge of unrighteousness on him, and for his disregard to what Eliphaz had said, his contempt of in and opposition to it; or as impatient at his long reply, wanting him to cease speaking, that he might return an answer, and therefore breaks in upon him before he had well done, see Job 18:2; or as despising what he had said, representing it as idle talk, and as mere trifling; and so some render the words, "how long wilt thou trifle after this sort?" (g) or throw out such nonsense and fabulous stuff as this?

and how long shall the words of thy mouth be like a strong wind? blustering, boisterous, and noisy, to which passionate words, expressed in a loud and sonorous manner, may be compared; and so we say of a man in a passion and rage, that he "storms". Bildad thought that his speeches were hard and rough, and stout against God, and very indecent and unbecoming a creature to his Maker, and not kind and civil to them his friends; and yet they were like wind, vain and empty, great swelling words, but words of vanity; they were spoken, and seemed big, but had nothing solid and substantial in them, as Bildad thought.

(g) "nugaberis haec", Cocceius; "talia", Tigurine version; "talk after this sort?" Broughton.

How long wilt thou speak these things? and how long shall the words of thy mouth {a} be like a strong wind?

(a) He declares that their words which would diminish anything from the justice of God, are but as a puff of wind that vanishes away.

Verse 2. - How long wilt thou speak these things? An exclamation like that of Cicero, "Quousque tandem?" One or two outbreaks might be pardoned; but to persist was to abuse the patience of his hearers. And how long shall the words of thy mouth be like a strong wind? literally, be a strong wind; i.e. have all the bluster and vehemence of a tempest, which seeks to carry everything before it by sheer force and fury. The address is rude and unsympathetic. 17 What is man that Thou magnifiest him,

And that Thou turnest Thy heart toward him,

18 And visitest him every morning,

Triest him every moment?

19 How long dost Thou not look away from me,

Nor lettest me alone till I swallow down my spittle?

The questions in Job 7:17. are in some degree a parody on Psalm 8:5, comp. Psalm 144:3, Lamentations 3:23. There it is said that God exalts puny man to a kingly and divine position among His creatures, and distinguishes him continually with new tokens of His favour; here, that instead of ignoring him, He makes too much of him, by selecting him, perishable as he is, as the object of ever new and ceaseless sufferings. כּמּה, quamdiu, Job 7:19, is construed with the praet. instead of the fut.: how long will it continue that Thou turnest not away Thy look of anger from me? as the synonymous עד־מתי, quousque, is sometimes construed with the praet. instead of the fut., e.g., Psalm 80:5. "Until I swallow my spittle" is a proverbial expression for the minimum of time.

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