2:11 When Job’s three friends heard about all this calamity that had happened to him, each of them came from his own country 2 – Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. 3 They met together 4 to come to show sympathy 5 for him and to console 6 him.
1 sn See N. C. Habel, “‘Only the Jackal is My Friend,’ On Friends and Redeemers in Job,” Int 31 (1977): 227-36.
2 tn Heb “a man from his place”; this is the distributive use, meaning “each man came from his place.”
3 sn Commentators have tried to analyze the meanings of the names of the friends and their locations. Not only has this proven to be difficult (Teman is the only place that is known), it is not necessary for the study of the book. The names are probably not symbolic of the things they say.
4 tn The verb can mean that they “agreed together”; but it also (and more likely) means that they came together at a meeting point to go visit Job together.
5 tn The verb “to show grief” is נוּד (nud), and literally signifies “to shake the head.” It may be that his friends came to show the proper sympathy and express the appropriate feelings. They were not ready for what they found.
6 tn The second infinitive is from נָחָם (nakham, “to comfort, console” in the Piel). This word may be derived from a word with a meaning of sighing deeply.
7 tn Heb “ate bread.”
8 tn The Hebrew word קְשִׂיטָה (qÿsitah) is generally understood to refer to a unit of money, but the value is unknown.
sn The Hebrew word refers to a piece of silver, yet uncoined. It is the kind used in Gen 33:19 and Josh 24:32. It is what would be expected of a story set in the patriarchal age.
9 sn This gold ring was worn by women in the nose, or men and women in the ear.