Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.…
Compassing here doth signify tempting, and the "earth" doth signify all the people of the earth; as if he should say, "I come from tempting all men." As Satan is here called a "compasser," so he will compass your eyes with shows, and your ears with sounds, and your senses with sleep, and your thoughts with fancies, and all to hinder you from hearing while the articles are against him; and after I have spoken, he will compass you again with business, and cares, and pleasures, and quarrels, to make you forget that which you have heard. Therefore "take heed how ye hear." Satan is an adversary compassing the earth; and therefore let the earth beware, like a city which is besieged with the adversaries. Three things I note wherefore the devil may be said to compass the earth.
1. Because he tempteth all men.
2. Because he tempteth all to sin; and
3. Because he tempteth by all means.What doth he compass? "The earth." This is the devil's pilgrimage, from one end of the earth to the other, and then back again; like a wandering merchant which seeketh his traffic where he can speed cheapest. First of all creatures, Satan compasseth men; he compasseth all men, and he compasseth good men. If then the devil be such a busy-body, which meddleth in every man's matter, let us remember what the wise man saith, "A busy-body is hated"; the devil is to be hated because he is a busy-body. As the serpent compasseth, so doth his seed; and therefore Solomon calls the ways of the wicked crooked ways.
Parallel VersesKJV: Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.