New American Standard Bible
"I too could speak like you, If I were in your place. I could compose words against you And shake my head at you.
King James Bible
I also could speak as ye do: if your soul were in my soul's stead, I could heap up words against you, and shake mine head at you.
Darby Bible Translation
I also could speak as ye: if your soul were in my soul's stead, I could join together words against you, and shake my head at you;
World English Bible
I also could speak as you do. If your soul were in my soul's place, I could join words together against you, and shake my head at you,
Young's Literal Translation
I also, like you, might speak, If your soul were in my soul's stead. I might join against you with words, And nod at you with my head.
Job 16:4 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
I also could speak as ye do - In the same reproachful manner, and stringing together old proverbs and maxims as you have.
If your soul were in my soul's stead - If you were in my place. The idea is, that there is no difficulty in finding arguments to overwhelm the afflicted - a truth which most persons who have been unfortunate, have had opportunity to experience.
I could heap up words against you - Or, rather, "I could string together words against you." The idea is not that of heaping up, or accumulating; it is that of tying together, or uniting; and refers here to stringing together old maxims, saws, and proverbs, in the form of a set argument or discourse. The idea of Job is, that their discourses were nothing but ancient proverbs, thrown together, or strung along without regard to order, pertinency, or force. The Hebrew word used here (חבר châbar) means to bind, to bind together, to associate, to be confederate. It may be applied to friends - united in friendship; to nations - united in an alliance, etc. Gesenius supposes that it means here that he "would make a league with words against them;" but the above seems to be the more probable interpretation. The Septuagint renders it, "then I could insult you - ἐναλοῦμαι enaloumai - with words." Jerome (Vulgate) "I would console you with words, and move my head over you." The Chaldee is as the Hebrew - חבר châbar. Dr. Good renders it, "against you will I string together old sayings."
And shake mine head at you - An action common to all countries and ages, expressive of contempt, or of threatening; compare Jeremiah 18:16; Lamentations 2:15; Zephaniah 2:15; Matthew 27:39. So Lucretius ii.:1163:
Jamque caput quassans grandis suspirat ararat
Crebrius incassum magnum cecidisse laborem.
In like manner Virgil, Aeneid xii. 292:
Tum quassanos caput, haec effudit pectore dicta.
So, also, Homer, Odyssey ε e:
Κινήσας δὲ κάρη πρότι ὅν μυθήσατο Θυμόν.
Kinēsas de karē proti hon muthēsato thumon.
The meaning of Job here is, that be could as easily have expressed contempt, reproach, and scorn, as they did. It required no uncommon talent to do it, and he felt that he would have been fully sufficient for the task.
LibraryThe Work of Jesus Christ as an Advocate,
CLEARLY EXPLAINED, AND LARGELY IMPROVED, FOR THE BENEFIT OF ALL BELIEVERS. 1 John 2:1--"And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." By JOHN BUNYAN, Author of "The Pilgrim's Progress." London: Printed for Dorman Newman, at the King's Arms, in the Poultry, 1689. ADVERTISEMENT BY THE EDITOR. This is one of the most interesting of Bunyan's treatises, to edit which required the Bible at my right hand, and a law dictionary on my left. It was very frequently republished; …
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3
And those passing by were hurling abuse at Him, wagging their heads
"I could strengthen you with my mouth, And the solace of my lips could lessen your pain.
All who see me sneer at me; They separate with the lip, they wag the head, saying,
I also have become a reproach to them; When they see me, they wag their head.
this is the word that the LORD has spoken against him: "She has despised you and mocked you, The virgin daughter of Zion; She has shaken her head behind you, The daughter of Jerusalem!
"Now was not Israel a laughingstock to you? Or was he caught among thieves? For each time you speak about him you shake your head in scorn.
This is the exultant city Which dwells securely, Who says in her heart, "I am, and there is no one besides me." How she has become a desolation, A resting place for beasts! Everyone who passes by her will hiss And wave his hand in contempt.
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