New American Standard Bible
"Now a word was brought to me stealthily, And my ear received a whisper of it.
King James Bible
Now a thing was secretly brought to me, and mine ear received a little thereof.
Darby Bible Translation
Now to me a word was secretly brought, and mine ear received a whisper thereof.
World English Bible
"Now a thing was secretly brought to me. My ear received a whisper of it.
Young's Literal Translation
And unto me a thing is secretly brought, And receive doth mine ear a little of it.
Job 4:12 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
Now a thing - To confirm his views, Eliphaz appeals to a vision of a most remarkable character which he says he had had on some former occasion on the very point under consideration. The object of the vision was, to show that mortal man could not be more just than God, and that such was the purity of the Most High, that he put no confidence comparatively even in the angels. The design for which this is introduced here is, evidently, to reprove what he deemed the unfounded self-confidence of Job. He supposed that he had been placing an undue reliance on his own integrity; that he had not a just view of the infinite holiness of God, and had not been aware of the true state of his own heart. The highest earthly excellency, is the meaning of Eliphaz, fades away before God, and furnishes no ground for self-reliance. It is so imperfect, so feeble, so far from what it should be, that it is no wonder that a God so holy and exalted should disregard it: He designed also, by describing this vision, to reprove Job for seeming to be more wise than his Maker in arraigning him for his dealings, and uttering the language of complaint. The word "thing" here means a word (Hebrew), a communication, a revelation.
Was secretly brought to me - Margin, "by stealth." The Hebrew word (גנב gânab) means "to steal," to take away by stealth, or secretly. Here it means, that the oracle was brought to him as it were by stealth. It did not come openly and plainly, but in secrecy and silence - as a thief approaches a dwelling. An expression similar to this occurs in Lucian, in Amor. p. 884, as quoted by Schultens, κλεπτομένη λαλιὰ καί ψιθυρισμός kleptomenē lalia kai psithurismos.
And mine ear received a little thereof - Dr. Good translates this, "And mine ear received a whisper along with it." Noyes, "And mine ear caught a whisper thereof." The Vulgate, "And my ear received secretly the pulsations of its whisper" - venas susurri ejus. The word rendered "a little," שׁמץ shemets, occurs only here and in Job 26:14, where it is also rendered little. It means, according to Gesenius, a transient sound rapidly uttered and swiftly passing away. Symm. ψιθυρισμός psithurismos - a whisper. According to Castell, it means a sound confused and feeble, such as one receives when a man is speaking in a hurried manner, and when he cannot catch all that is said. This is probably the sense here. Eliphaz means to say that he did not get all that might have been said in the vision. It occurred in such circumstances, and what was said was delivered in such a manner, that he did not hear it all distinctly.
But he beard an important sentiment, which he proceeds to apply to the case of Job. - It has been made a question whether Eliphaz really had such a vision, or whether he only supposed such a case, and whether the whole representation is not poetic. The fair construction is, that he had had such a vision. In such a supposition there is nothing inconsistent with the mode in which the will of God was made known in ancient times; and in the sentiments uttered there is nothing inconsistent with what might have been spoken by a celestial visitant on such an occasion. All that was spoken was in accordance with the truth everywhere revealed in the Scriptures, though Eliphaz perverted it to prove that Job was insincere and hypocritical. The general sentiment in the oracle was, that man was not pure and holy compared with his Maker; that no one was free from guilt in his sight; that there was no virtue in man in which God could put entire confidence; and that, therefore, all were subjected to trials and to death. But this general sentiment he proceeds to apply to Job, and regards it as teaching, that since he was overwhelmed with such special afflictions, there must have been some secret sin of which he was guilty, which was the cause of his calamities.
LibraryWhether Human Nature was More Assumable by the Son of God than any Other Nature?
Objection 1: It would seem that human nature is not more capable of being assumed by the Son of God than any other nature. For Augustine says (Ep. ad Volusianum cxxxvii): "In deeds wrought miraculously the whole reason of the deed is the power of the doer." Now the power of God Who wrought the Incarnation, which is a most miraculous work, is not limited to one nature, since the power of God is infinite. Therefore human nature is not more capable of being assumed than any other creature. Objection …
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica
Whether Christ Received Knowledge from the Angels?
On the Animals
The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit as Revealed in his Names.
"Behold, these are the fringes of His ways; And how faint a word we hear of Him! But His mighty thunder, who can understand?"
"In a dream, a vision of the night, When sound sleep falls on men, While they slumber in their beds,
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