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8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

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9 Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?

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10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? *Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land:

12 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; P only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the

presence of the LORD. [Practical Observations.]

13 ¶ And there was a day, when his sons and his daughters were eating, and drinking wine, in their eldest brother's house:

14 And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them;

15 And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and he will" and I only am escaped alone to tell

11 But 'put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath,

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thee to thy face.

curse Heb. set thy heart on. 2:3. 34: 14. Ez. 40:4.

Num. 12:7,8. Ps. 89:20. Is. 42:1.

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1. 8:20. 9:22,23. Ps. 18:23. John 1:47.

d 12:4. 17:8,9. 23:11,12. Ps. 84: 11.

Neh. 5:15. Ps. 36:1. Prov. 8: 13. Luke 23:39,40.

f Ps. 34:14. 37:27. Is. 1:16.

21. 2:10. 21:14,15. Mal. 1:10. Matt. 16:26. 1 Tim. 4:8. 6:6. b Gen. 15: 1. Deut. 33:27-29

1 Sam. 25:16. Ps. 5:12. 80:12.
Is. 5:2,5. Zech. 2.5,8. 1 Pet.
1:5.

i Gen. 39.5. Deut. 28:2-6.
Ps. 71:21. 128:1-4.

Ps.

k 42:12. Gen. 26:12. 30:30. 49:
25. Deut. 7:13,14. 33:11.
90:17. 107:38. Prov. 10:22.
+ Or, cattle. Gen. 30:43.
1 12. 2:5. Is. 5:25.

m 4:5. 19:21. Gen. 26.11. Ps.
105:15. Zech. 2:8.

Heb. if he curse thee not. 21.
n 5. See on 2:9-1s. 8:21. Mal.
3:13,14. Rev. 16:9,11,21.

V. 8. Satan seemed to advance a claim to the earth as if it had been all his own; but the Lord gave him to understand, that he had a remnant of servants there: and, as this accuser had always something to urge against every believer, he was asked, whether he had fully considered Job's character and conduct. (Notes, Zech. 3:1-4. Rev. 12:7-12.)-The express attestation of God to Job's integrity and piety, as the most faithful servant he had at that time on earth, is sufficient to demonstrate, that he was not a self-righteous Pharisee before his afflictions; as some persons, from undue regard to system, have ventured to speak of him.

thee.

there The fire

and hath

16 While he was yet speaking,
came also another, and said,
of God is fallen from heaven,
o 1 Kings 22:22. Luke 8:32. 22:
31,32. John 19:11. 2 Cor. 12:7.
Heb. hand. Gen. 16:6. Jer.
38:5. John 3:35,36.

P 2.4-6. Ps. 76:10. Is. 27:8. 1
Cor. 10:13.

q 2:7. Luke 8:33.

r 4. Prov. 27:1. Ee 9:12. Luke
12:19,20. 17:27-29, 21:34.

5 1 Sam. 4:17. 2 Sam. 15:13.

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earth; and if Satan could have succeeded in this attempt, he would really have made out his claim to the dominion over the whole human race: and though he failed, be yet had an opportunity of gratifying his malice in Job's sufferings. But with inward anguish he was constrained to confess, that he was not able to break through the hedge of continual protection, which God had placed round the person, substance, and family of his servant; or to give the least disturbance to the peace and blessings which Job enjoyed in his favor, and under the watchful care of his over-ruling providence.

Curse thee. (11) Whether to thy face he will not bless thee.' E. Smith. Certainly to thy face he will bless thee.' Sept. (Note, 5.).

V. 9-11. Satan could not deny the excellency of Job's conduct: but he artfully insinuated, that he was mercenary in his religion, and serv- V. 12. Thus the Lord gave Satan permission ed God, not from love to him or his ways, but to deprive Job of all those comforts and possesfor what he could get; or at least, that in his sions, for the sake of which he was supposed to present circumstances the contrary could not be serve him. But he would not allow the enemy demonstrated. It was worth his while to keep to wound or to kill his body; or even to assail up a regard to religion; for he grew rich, pros- his soul with those horrid temptations, which perous, and honorable by it. He had no tempta-evidently formed a principal part of his subsetion to fraud or oppression; for he had all that he quent trials. This permission was granted, not could wish, in a more safe and creditable man- because Job had any special need of chastiseHe had nothing to ruffle his temper, or toment; but that his integrity, and the power of render him distrustful or discontented; and there- divine grace in him, might be manifested to Safore the reality of his faith, meekness, and acqui-tan's confusion, the real benefit of Job, the edifiescence in the will of God, might fairly be ques-cation of the church in future ages, and the glotioned. In short, if duly tried, he would be foundry of God in all these respects.

ner.

his sons should sin amidst their festivity; and he seems to have chosen this day for his purpose, that the calamities might be construed into divine judgments.

a different man: and if the Lord would himself V. 13. Satan knew how fearful Job was lest "put forth his hand, and touch" (that is, take from him, or imbitter to him,) "all that he had;" he would not only murmur and fret, which a true believer might be tempted to do; not only indulge hard thoughts of God, as Job suspected that his sons might have cursed God in their hearts; but he would openly blaspheme God and renounce religion. (Note, 5.) The last clause is literally, "If he curse thee not to thy face;" which implies that more was meant than expressed: 'If it be not 'so, I am greatly mistaken, or I will consent to 'be punished as a false witness.'-God had declared Job to be the most eminent saint upon

V. 14, 15. One messenger was spared to carry the tidings of each calamity, that the sudden and certain information, which Job received, might overwhelm his mind at once; and that he might not have time to recover himself from his consternation, or to seek support from God, of which a more gradual information would have admitted.-The servants were at their work, and lost their lives in defending their master's

burnt up the sheep, and the servants, and || the four corners of the house, and it fell consumed them; and I only am escaped upon the young men, and they are dead; alone to tell thee. and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

17 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

18 While he was yet speaking, Z there came also another, and said, "Thy sons and thy daughters were beating, and drinking wine, in their eldest brother's house;

19 And, behold, there came wind from the wilderness, and

x Gen. 11:28 Is. 23:13. Hab. 1:6.

Heb. ruskea.

y 15. 2 Sam. 1:3.

6:2,3. 16:14. 19:9,10. 23:2. Is. 28:19. Jer. 51:31. Lam. 1:12.

Amos 4:6-11.

a great
smote

a 8:4.27.14. Ps. 34:19. Ec. 9:2.
b 2 Sam. 13:23.

c Jer. 4:11,12. Eph. 2:2.
† Heb. from aside, &c.

property. The Sabeans were a tribe of the Arabians, who were freebooters, and infested those regions; but it is uncertain whether descended from Abraham, either by Ishmael, or Keturah. (Marg. Ref. t.)

V. 16. This servant naturally called the extraordinary lightning, which consumed all the flocks of sheep, "the fire of God;" and the expression might aid Satan's temptation, as it seemed to imply that God fought against Job, and was become his enemy. If this fire had destroyed the Sabeans with their ill-gotten booty, the divine justice would have been manifest: but that they should escape, while the servants of pious Job were slain, and the flocks destroyed, from which so many burnt-offerings had been sacrificed to the Lord, seemed very mysterious and perplexing.-We cannot determine, in what manner this and other effects were produced by Satan, who is "the prince of the power of the air;" (Note, Eph. 2:1,2.) and is, no doubt, able, when permitted, to cause any such phenomena. (Note, Deut. 13:1-5.) It is generally agreed that the tremendous appearances on mount Sinai were produced by the ministration of holy angels: and though fallen angels have lost their holy dispositions and moral powers, they retain their natural capacities; and doubtless could, if they were allowed, produce similar effects: at least, it is impossible to prove the contrary, seeing we cannot explain the manner, or ascertain the boundaries, of their operations. But they are absolutely in the Lord's hands, and can exercise their powers only by his permission; and this alone is the security of our bodies, minds, relatives, friends, and possessions.

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20 Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and & fell down upon the ground, and worshipped;

21 And said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; 'blessed be the name of the LORD.

22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

& Judg. 16:30.

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Matt. 7:27. Luke 13.1-5.k Gen. 45:5. 2 Sam. 16:10. 1
Acts 28:4.

e Gen. 37:32,33. 42:36. 2 Sam.
18:33.

f Gen. 37:29,34. Ezra 9:3.
t Or, robe.

g Deut. 9:18. 2 Sam. 12:16-20.
2 Chr. 7:3. Matt. 26:39. 1 Pet.
5:6.

h Gen. 3:19. Ps. 49:17. Ec. 5:
15. 12:7. 1 Tim. 6:7.

i 2:10. Gen. 30:2. Ec. 5:19.

Kings 12:15. Ps. 39:9. Is. 42: 24. 45:7. Amos 3:6. Matt. 20. 15. Acts 4:28.

1 11. 1 Sam. 3:18. 2 Kings 20: 19. Ps. 34:1. Is. 24:15. Eph. 5:20. 1 Thes. 5:18.

m 2:10. Jam. 1:4,12. 1 Pet. 1:7. Or, attributed folly to God. 34:10,18,19. 40:48. Rom. 9: 20.

suddenly, and, as it appeared, by the immediate hand of God, when they were feasting, and not at their sacrifices;-this, added to all the preceding unprecedented misfortunes, was sufficient to drive most men distracted, or to urge them to bitter complaints, or even desperate imprecations. When we have endeavored to conceive aright of Job's circumstances, comforts, and prospects, on the morning of this eventful day, and of the dreadful change which took place before evening; and when we realize, from experience and observation, the feelings of the human heart under trials comparatively trivial; we shall be able to form some faint idea of the immense load, which was at once laid upon this er inent servant of God: and the strength of his faith and grace appears, in the manner in which he supported it. And though, afterwards, the still accumulating weight extorted from him some impatient expressions, which many have inconsiderately objected to the scriptural commendation of his patience; yet, probably, no mere man ever suffered so much and so long, with equal resignation and constancy.

V. 20-22. Job acted as one who felt the weight of his afflictions; but he did not sink under them, or lose possession of his soul. (Note, Luke 21:19.) He expressed his inward anguish in the customary manner; and behaved, not like one furious or distracted, but with silent and reflecting sorrow. Having rent his mantle and shaved his head, he prostrated himself, and worshipped the Lord. He acknowledged, that he came into the world naked and indigent, and was no poorer after all his losses, than when he was born. He recollected that he should soon leave the world, and restore his body to the earth, from which it was taken, as the common parent of all; and that he could carry nothing away with him. He had received all from the V. 18, 19. This greatest affliction was reserv-unmerited bounty of God, who had seen good to ed for the last, that it might drive Job desperate, when the hand of God seemed to be thus gone forth against him. The loss of one child has often been more than an affectionate parent could support with decent resignation: but for a whole flourishing family, educated with pious care, and for years insinuating into their father's affections; who were all now grown up, living in harmony, affluence, and credit, and likely to perpetuate his name and prosperity; to be all cut off at once,

V. 17. The Chaldeans seem at this time to have been an inconsiderable roving tribe; but they afterwards became a powerful nation. (Notes, Is. 23:13. Hab. 1:5-7.)

remand his substance and his children, a little before the time when otherwise he must have left them: and his body and soul, his faith and hope, his heavenly inheritance and his God, still remained to him. Whoever were the instruments, the Lord was acknowledged as the Author of his calamities: he had no heart to revile the Sabeans and Chaldeans, and others concerned in his losses. He was assured in his judgment, whatever his feelings were, that God had a sove

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PRACTICAL OBSERVATIONS.

V. 1-5.

reign right to dispose of him and his, as he pleas- ||go, and what company we keep; but also, what ed; and that he had done nothing inconsistent our intentions and dispositions are.-We ought with his infinite wisdom, justice, truth, and good-likewise to expect temptations, and that offences ness. Instead therefore of blaspheming, as Satan will continue in the church: and we should chiefly had predicted, he praised, blessed, and thanked look to ourselves; for we must every one give an the Lord, in faith, love, and humble resignation. account of himself to God.-May we then imitate -Thus far he stood the trial most honorably, and those holy and loving angels, who are "all wordid not even utter a single expression, which in shipping spirits, sent forth to minister unto them any measure reflected upon the divine conduct. who shall be heirs of salvation!"-Satan claims (Marg. reading.) this earth as his domain; and alas! he has hitherto had too much ground for his arrogant pretensions: and as he continually "goeth about seeking whom he may devour," we ought to be always sober "In every nation he that feareth God, and and vigilant. But there is a remnant who are worketh righteousness, is accepted of him:" rescued from his tyranny, and are the servants of (Note, Acts 10:34,35.) and he will have some God, in whom he is glorified, and over whom he even of the wealthy and prosperous of the world rejoices.-Those who are disposed to represent to serve him; "for with God all things are possi- the most blameless professors of godliness, as ble." (Note, Matt. 19:23–26.)—When the heart || hypocritical or mercenary; to put a bad construcis upright and devoted to God, the general con- tion upon harmless or even good actions; and to duct will be holy, and he will be served with the insinuate some suspicion or objection, in order to whole man; for the genuine fear of his name will detract from the commendations bestowed upon produce habitual hatred of sin, and watchfulness pious and useful men; may easily know whose against it. We receive our children, as well as children they are, whose example they follow, every other comfort, from the Lord: we ought and whose work they do. For they resemble, in therefore carefully to train them up for him, and every feature, Satan, the envenomed slanderer to keep them from the contagion of this evil and "accuser of the brethren." It is indeed true, world: and we cannot but rejoice to see them that God will not suffer his people to serve him grow up, living in peace and love. We should, for nought. Their best interests are secured; no however, be careful not to set our hearts too good thing they do shall lose its reward; and he much upon them, as we know not how soon they will give them as many worldly comforts as he may be torn from us, or made the occasions of sees good for them. Yet every believer serves our deepest distress; but we ought to commit God from love, gratitude, and zeal, and delights them to God by constant prayer, and seek his in his holy commandments. When called to it, grace to enable us to be submissive, however he he will part with every temporal possession for may dispose of them.-It cannot be expected, his sake: and it is impossible that he, who loves but that young people will pay attention to things God above all things, should fail of being eternalnot directly sinful, for which their pious parents ly happy in the enjoyment of him. But untried may have no relish; it is not evil in itself to re- faith is not much to be depended on. If ease, joice in the bounty of Providence, and to use wealth, and pleasure uniformly attended piety; if hospitality towards our friends and relatives; and there were no cross, self-denial, or temptation, to it is a pleasant sight to behold the several branch- serve as a touchstone, or a furnace; it would be es of a family love and enjoy each other's com- very difficult to distinguish the believer from the pany. Yet every indulgence disposes us to un- hypocrite: and therefore Satan is often allowed watchfulness, and forgetfulness of God: and we to sift and prove the people of God, that he may seldoin feast together in the most friendly and be the more confounded. (Notes, 23:8-12. Luke decent manner, without having cause to repent 22:31-34. Jam. 1:2-4,12. 1 Pet. 1:6,7. 4:12-16.) of some part of our conduct and conversation; or He means to destroy, defile, or distress them: but at least of the thoughts and temper of our hearts. the Lord intends to demonstrate the reality and All that of which we are thus conscious must be power of his grace in them, for his own glory and washed away in the atoning blood of Christ, or their important good.-Little do we know what it will rise up against us in judgment at the last plots are forming against us in the invisible world; day. We have therefore cause for continual nor are we sufficiently sensible of the number, self-examination; and after every social inter-power, malice, and subtlety of our unseen adverview, we must bestow pains to bring our hearts saries. We bolt and bar to keep out a few ruffians into due frame for the ordinances of God. Pa- of our own species, who might come to plunder or rents also should watch over their children, and murder us while we sleep; but there are legions exhort, instruct, and assist them, in thus seeking of infernal spirits, whom we can by no means exan interest in the great Redeemer, and in pre- clude, and who are able in a moment to distract, paring to commemorate his death at the Lord's torment, or destroy us. Blessed be the Lord, his table. The higher men are advanced in rank or power limits the operations of these malicious foes; authority, the more important is it, that they pay and the protection which he affords to ungodly regard to these duties, for an example to their men against their destructive rage, is a most woninferiors: but alas! how few of our nobles and derful instance of his patience and loving-kindrulers, in this Christian land, imitate Job, in this ness. Yet, as they generally disbelieve or disreopen profession of godliness, and this strict at-gard the being and agency of evil spirits, they are tention to religion in his family! Yet the consistent believer will attend on these things continually.

V. 6-12.

No man is proved to be a true Christian by being found in company with the children of God, even when they appear before him in his house, or at his table. Could Satan enter heaven, and associate with angels, he would still remain a liar and a murderer, ambitious, subtle, envious, and malignant: and while holy spirits delighted in the service of their God, he would be plotting mischief against his cause and people. We should therefore inquire, not only whither we

"taken captive by them at their will," and are hurried on in rebellion against God. But they who love the Lord are assured of protection Their enemies can never break through the hedge, which the Almighty God hath made around them; and even when he permits them to be tempted, neither the devil nor his emissaries can exceed the limits assigned them.

V. 13-22.

It is the delight of Satan and of all his servants to do mischief: they will go to the full length of their chain; and we do not know how far they may be permitted to practise and prosper against us. We see in the example before us, to what an

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NOTES.

CHAP. II. V. 1-3. (Notes, 1:6-19.)-Still he holdeth fast, &c. (3) Satan had been permitted to prove Job's sincerity, by the most overwhelming and sudden loss of his whole substance, and of all his children. But instead of cursing, he blessed and worshipped God. Thus he held fast his integrity, and shewed the simplicity and piety of his heart. (Note, 1:20-22.) Satan had "without cause," moved the Lord thus to afflict his servant: for there was not the least ground for the charge of selfishness which he had lodged against him: and nothing in Job's character rendered such severe afflictions necessary, either to preserve him from ruin, or to vindicate the honor of the divine government: yet, doubtless, the Lord had wise and good reasons for his conduct; and Job, as a sinner, deserved worse than any temporal afflictions.-The word rendered destroy, signifies to swallow up; and may refer to Job's substance and family: but Satan aimed to destroy his soul also. But thou spakest to destroy his substance in vain.' Sept.

extent they may be successful; and, though they are seldom allowed to proceed so far, we should be thankful that they can go no farther, and should prepare for the worst. One calamity may succeed another, and each be heavier than the preceding; they may come on us from all quarters, with every circumstantial aggravation; we may be entirely impoverished and bereaved; indeed, none can say all that we may suffer; and yet our grand interest may be safe, and all things working together for our good. But, if in all our troubles we look to our gracious God, he will repress our murmurs and support us under our afflictions. However unjust the instruments of our correction may be, he is righteous in all that is laid upon us. Our all is from his gift, we have forfeited it by sin, and ought not to complain if he take any part of it from us. We have received all our possessions, since we "came naked into this world;" and we must leave every earthly comfort and advantage when we go out of it: for they were only imparted to bear the expenses of our journey, and to assist our fellow-travellers. Soon will our bodies be conveyed to the earth V. 4, 5. Satan construed Job's holy resignawhence they were taken, and our souls into the tion into an evidence of his insensibility; as if he eternal world: and should we be spoiled of all, had been destitute of affection for his children, and bereaved of our beloved children or friends, and regard for his servants. His life and health before we depart; we shall not live long to feel were preserved, and he would give any one's skin our loss, and the hopes and earnest of heaven will to preserve his own: he was willing therefore to support us under it. May we then be enabled to compound, and part with all to save his life; so "choose the good part which shall never be taken that he still kept up his religion, expecting that from us;" to "set our affections on things above," his other losses would be made up. Nothing could and to "possess our souls in patience." May we, be more unreasonable and malignant than this inafter the example of Job, learn, under our lighter sinuation: yet it illustrates the subtlety of that trials, to repress every rebellious passion; to hum-enemy, who was able plausibly to put a bad conble ourselves before God; to adore his wise and struction on Job's most unexceptionable conduct, righteous sovereignty, and to praise him for re-and to impute to the basest principles, what maining mercies and prospects; and by all our sprang from the noblest of which the human heart troubles, to get nearer to his mercy-seat, in com- is susceptible. munion with him. Then Satan will miss his aim, V. 6. To prove the falsehood and malice of and not be able by affliction to prevail with us to Satan's insinuation, God granted him permission sin, or "charge God foolishly." And may the to afflict Job in his body, in any way he chose; malice and power of these our enemies render only he was to "save his life." The word is more precious to us that gracious and condescend-often rendered soul, and probably means that he ing Savior, "who came to destroy the works of the devil," and who, in order to effect our salvation, was willing to suffer from that enemy, far more than Job suffered or than we can possibly

conceive.

VOL. III.

2

was to preserve to him the possession of his understanding; for if he were driven distracted, and in his frenzy blasphemed, it would not be a fair trial. (Notes, 1:9-12. Ps. 76:10. Luke 22:3134.)

[9

с

b

11 Now when Job's three friends 8 And he took him a potsherd to himself withal: and he sat downheard of all this evil that was come upon scrape among the ashes. [Pratical Observations.] him, they came every one from his own 9 Then said his wife unto him, place; Eliphaz the Temanite, and BilDost thou still retain thine integrity? dad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naacurse God, and die. mathite: for they had made an appoint ment together to come to mourn with him, and to comfort him.

X

10 But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.

q 19 14-17. Ps. 38:5" 16:20,21.

Luke

r 42:6. 2 Sam. 13:19. Is. 61:3.
Ez. 27:30. Jon. 3;6. Matt. 11:
21.

s Gen. 3:6,12. 1 Kings 11:4.
t 3. 21:14,15.
2 Kings 6:33.

Mal. 3:14.

u 5. 1:11.

x Gen. 3:17. 2 Sam. 19:22. Matt.

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d

12 And when they lifted up their eyes
afar off, and knew him not, they lifted
up their voice and wept; and
every one his mantle, and

b 6:14. 16:20. 19:19,21. 42:7. | f 13:4. 16:2.
Prov. 17:17. 18:24. 27:10.

c 6:19. 15:1. Gen. 36:11,15. Jer.
49:7.

d 8-1. 18:1. Gen. 25:2. 1 Chr. 1:
32.

e 42:11. Gen. 37:35. Is. 51:19.
John 11:19. Rom. 12:15.
Cor. 12:26. Heb. 13:3.

i

they rent

k

sprinkled

g 19:14. Ruth 1:19-21. Lam. 4:7,8.

n Gen. 27:34. Judg. 2:4. 1 Sam. 11:4. 30:4. 2 Sam. 13.36. Esth. 4:1.

1:20.

1k Neh. 9:1. Lam. 2:10. Ez. 27: 30. Rev. 18:19.

V. 7, 8. No doubt the disease, which Satan V. 10. Considering Job's situation, nothing inflicted on Job, was as painful and loathsome as can be more admirable than this reply. He reit could be made. (Notes, Matt. 8:28,29. Luke proved his wife with firmness, yet with temper; 13:10-17. P. O. 10-21.) Sore boils or ulcers, and neither the anguish of his mind, nor the base(one of which is often found sufficient to exercise ness of her suggestion, dictated any opprobrious all our patience,) covered Job from head to foot: language. He did not even address her, as a so that his excessive torture must have been in-foolish, or wicked, woman; for he would not for capable of relief from change of posture; and he would be so offensive that few would come near him. Being deprived of other relief, he took a potsherd to cleanse his sores: or perhaps when any of the boils began to die away, the itching became as intolerable, as the pain before had been; so that "he took a potsherd to scrape himself withal:" and by this improper treatment, his disease was probably increased and prolonged, and one kind of misery alternately exchanged for another. (Notes, 30:15-31.)-He also "sat down among ashes." The Septuagint renders it 'upon 'a dunghill,' and he is generally represented in that situation: the original, however, only means that he assumed the posture of a mourner and a supplicant. (Marg. Ref. r.)

one crime, however great, condemn her as a hypocrite. She spoke indeed "as one of the foolish women:" but he would hope it was the effect of violent temptation, and the exceeding distress of her heart; and that she would repent of this her heinous sin. "What?" says he, in astonishment at her desperate language, "shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?" Shall we, guilty, polluted, worthless creatures, receive so many unmerited blessings from a just and holy God; and shall we refuse to accept of the punishment of our sins, when we suffer so much less than we deserve, and are yet allowed to hope for a happy event? 'Rather let us receive the evil also, with patient 'submission, and even as a pledge of his love, and ‘a means of our good.'-Thus far he most honorably stood the trial, and appeared the brightest in the furnace of affliction: and the testimony here borne to his conduct, shews that he did not speak the language of passion, as many seem to think; but that of soberness and piety.-It is not said, what reception his reply met with: but the temptation was repulsed and the tempter baffled; and we read little more of his wife. (19: 17.)

V. 9. When Satan deprived Job of his children,|| he reserved his wife to be his tempter; perhaps knowing her to be a woman of an impatient spirit, who had great influence with her husband. She had shared the former afflictions with him; yet it is probable that she was full of hard and rebellious thoughts, though she did not openly give vent to them. But when this additional calamity oppressed Job, she was driven to despair of help, and to upbraid him as preposterous in adhering to his religion, seeing God rewarded his fidelity and resig- V. 11. These friends of Job seem to have been nation, with nothing but one dire calamity after persons eminent for their rank in life, as well as another. The meaning of her advice has been|| for their wisdom and piety. The Septuagint call much disputed, for the Hebrew word signifies them kings, but no evidence can be adduced that both to bless and to curse. (Note, 1:5.) But her they were so. Eliphaz is supposed to have decounsel was evidently suggested by Satan, who scended from Teman, the grandson of Esau, by spake by her, as he had spoken by the serpent to Eliphaz, whose name this his descendant bore; Eve, and by Eve to Adam: and it was therefore (Gen. 36:11. 1 Chr. 1:36.) and Bildad, from coincident with his temptation: (Notes and P. O. Shuah, Abraham's son by Keturah. (Gen. 25:2. Gen. 3:1-6.) and both her preface and Job's an- 1 Chr. 1:32.) Zophar also sprang from some of swer prove, that it was desperate, and not pious, the families, descended from Abraham. For true advice which she gave. It is probable therefore, religion seems to have continued a considerable that our translation gives the true sense: and that time in the different branches of that favored Job's wife, being herself driven desperate, insti- family, even among those who were excluded gated him to despair and blasphemy, to "curse from the covenant made with Abraham, Isaac, God," though he should die for so doing; or even and Jacob.-These persons, having heard of Job's in order to provoke the Lord thus to terminate great affliction, made an appointment to go to visit his sufferings; or as an introduction to suicide, to him and sympathize with him. Their intentions which Satan no doubt would tempt him.-It is were humane, friendly, and pious; and they had well known, that the Gentiles, under great calam-doubtless been the associates of his religion in more ities, frequently vented their rage by curses against the gods, whom at other times they worshipped.

prosperous days: yet, by their mistake of his case, they not only greatly increased his anguish; but unintentionally concurred with Satan, in tempt

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