Job 29:21
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
“Men listened to me and waited and kept silence for my counsel.

King James Bible
Unto me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence at my counsel.

American Standard Version
Unto me men gave ear, and waited, And kept silence for my counsel.

Douay-Rheims Bible
They that heard me, waited for my sentence, and being attentive held their peace at my counsel.

English Revised Version
Unto me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence for my counsel.

Webster's Bible Translation
To me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence at my counsel.

Job 29:21 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

15 I was eyes to the blind,

And feet was I to the lame.

16 I was a father to the needy,

And the cause of the unknown I found out,

17 And broke the teeth of the wicked,

And I cast the spoil forth out of his teeth.

The less it is Job's purpose here to vindicate himself before the friends, the more forcible is the refutation which the accusations of the most hard-hearted uncharitableness raised against him by them, especially by Eliphaz, Job 22, find everywhere here. His charity relieved the bodily and spiritual wants of others - eyes to the blind (לעוּר with Pathach), feet to the lame. A father was he to the needy, which is expressed by a beautiful play of words, as if it were: the carer for the care-full ones; or what perhaps corresponds to the primary significations of אב and אביון:

(Note: There is an old Arabic defective verb, bayya, which signifies "to seek an asylum for one's self," e.g., anâ baj, I come as one seeking protection, a suppliant, in the usual language synon. of Arab. dachala, and thereby indicating its relationship to the Hebr. בּוא, perhaps the root of בּית (בּתּים), the ת of which would then not be a radical letter, but, as according to Ges. Thes. in זית, used only in the forming of the word, and the original meaning would be "a refuge." Traced to a secondary verb, אבה (properly to take up the fugitive, qabila-l-bı̂ja) springing from this primitive verb, אב would originally signify a guardian, protector; and from the fact of this name denoting, according to the form פּעל, properly in general the protecting power, the ideal femin. in אבות (Arab. abawât' and the Arabic dual abawain (properly both guardians), which embraces father and mother, would be explained and justified. Thus the rare phenomenon that the same אבה signifies in Hebr. "to be willing," and in Arab. "to refuse," would be solved. The notion of taking up the fugitive would have passed over in the Hebrew, taken according to its positive side, into the notion of being willing, i.e., of receiving and accepting (אבּל, qabila, e.g., 1 Kings 20:8, לא תעבה equals la taqbal); in the Arabic, however, taken according to its negative side, as refusing the fugitive to his pursuer, into that of not being willing; and the usage of the language favours this: abâhu ‛aleihi, he protected him against (Arab. 'lâ) the other (refused him to the other); Arab. abı̂yun equals ma'bin, protected, inaccessible to him who longs for it; Arab. ibyat, the protection, i.e., the retention of the milk in the udder. Hence אביון, from the Hebrew signif. of the verb, signifies one who desires anything, or a needy person, but originally (inasmuch as אבה is connected with Arab. byy) one who needs protection; from the Arabic signif. of Arab. 'abâ, one who restrains himself because he is obliged, one to whom what he wants is denied. To the Arab. ibja (defence, being hindered) corresponds in form the Hebr. אבה, according to which אניות אבה, Job 9:26, may be understood of ships, which, with all sails set and in all haste, seek the sheltering harbour before the approaching storm. We leave this suggestion for further research to sift and prove. More on Job 34:36. - Wetzst.)

the protector of those needing (seeking) protection. The unknown he did not regard as those who were nothing to him, but went unselfishly and impartially into the ground of their cause. לא־ידעתּי is an attributive clause, as Job 18:21; Isaiah 55:5; Isaiah 41:3, and freq., with a personal obj. (eorum) quos non noveram, for the translation causam quam nesciebam (Jer.) gives a tame, almost meaningless, thought. With reference to the suff. in אחקרהוּ, on the form ehu used seldom by Waw consec. (Job 12:4), and by the imper. (Job 40:11), chiefly with a solemn calm tone of speech, vid., Ew. 250, c. Further: He spared not to render wrong-doers harmless, and snatched from them what they had taken from others. The cohortative form of the fut. consec., ואשׁבּרה, has been discussed already on Job 1:15; Job 19:20. The form מתלּעות is a transposition of מלתּעות, to render it more convenient for pronunciation, for the Arab. ṭl‛, efferre se, whence a secondary form, Arab. tl‛, although used of the appearing of the teeth, furnishes no such appropriate primary signification as the Arab. lḏg, pungere, mordere, whence a secondary form, Arab. ltg; the Aethiopic maltâht, jawbone (maxilla), also favours מלתעה as the primary form. He shattered the grinders of the roguish, and by moral indignation against the robber he cast out of his teeth what he had stolen.

Job 29:21 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

gave ear

Job 29:9,10 The princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on their mouth...

Job 32:11,12 Behold, I waited for your words; I gave ear to your reasons, whilst you searched out what to say...

Cross References
Job 4:3
Behold, you have instructed many, and you have strengthened the weak hands.

Job 29:9
the princes refrained from talking and laid their hand on their mouth;

Hosea 13:1
When Ephraim spoke, there was trembling; he was exalted in Israel, but he incurred guilt through Baal and died.

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