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Job 17:16

Context

17:16 Will 1  it 2  go down to the barred gates 3  of death?

Will 4  we descend 5  together into the dust?”

1 sn It is natural to assume that this verse continues the interrogative clause of the preceding verse.

2 tn The plural form of the verb probably refers to the two words, or the two senses of the word in the preceding verse. Hope and what it produces will perish with Job.

3 tn The Hebrew word בַּדִּים (baddim) describes the “bars” or “bolts” of Sheol, referring (by synecdoche) to the “gates of Sheol.” The LXX has “with me to Sheol,” and many adopt that as “by my side.”

4 tn The conjunction אִם (’im) confirms the interrogative interpretation.

5 tn The translation follows the LXX and the Syriac versions with the change of vocalization in the MT. The MT has the noun “rest,” yielding, “will our rest be together in the dust?” The verb נָחַת (nakhat) in Aramaic means “to go down; to descend.” If that is the preferred reading – and it almost is universally accepted here – then it would be spelled נֵחַת (nekhat). In either case the point of the verse is clearly describing death and going to the grave.



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