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Job 34:8-12


34:8 He goes about 1  in company 2  with evildoers,

he goes along 3  with wicked men. 4 

34:9 For he says, ‘It does not profit a man

when he makes his delight with God.’ 5 

God is Not Unjust

34:10 “Therefore, listen to me, you men of understanding. 6 

Far be it from 7  God to do wickedness,

from the Almighty to do evil.

34:11 For he repays a person for his work, 8 

and according to the conduct of a person,

he causes the consequences to find him. 9 

34:12 Indeed, in truth, God does not act wickedly,

and the Almighty does not pervert justice.

Job 34:17-18


34:17 Do you really think 10 

that one who hates justice can govern? 11 

And will you declare guilty

the supremely righteous 12  One,

34:18 who says to a king, 13  ‘Worthless man’ 14 

and to nobles, ‘Wicked men,’

1 tn The perfect verb with the vav (ו) consecutive carries the sequence forward from the last description.

2 tn The word חֶבְרַה (khevrah, “company”) is a hapax legomenon. But its meaning is clear enough from the connections to related words and this context as well.

3 tn The infinitive construct with the ל (lamed) preposition may continue the clause with the finite verb (see GKC 351 §114.p).

4 tn Heb “men of wickedness”; the genitive is attributive (= “wicked men”).

5 tn Gordis, however, takes this expression in the sense of “being in favor with God.”

6 tn Heb “men of heart.” The “heart” is used for the capacity to understand and make the proper choice. It is often translated “mind.”

7 tn For this construction, see Job 27:5.

8 tn Heb “for the work of man, he [= God] repays him.”

9 tn Heb “he causes it to find him.” The text means that God will cause a man to find (or receive) the consequences of his actions.

10 tn The force of הַאַף (haaf) is “Is it truly the case?” The point is being made that if Job were right God could not be judging the world.

11 tn The verb חָבַשׁ (khavash) has the basic idea of “to bind,” as in binding on the yoke, and then in the sense of subduing people under authority (cf. Assyrian absanu). The imperfect verb here is best expressed with the potential nuance.

12 tn The two words could be taken separately, but they seem to form a fine nominal hendiadys, because the issue is God’s justice. So the word for power becomes the modifier.

13 tc Heb “Does one say,” although some smooth it out to say “Is it fit to say?” For the reading “who says,” the form has to be repointed to הַאֹמֵר (haomer) meaning, “who is the one saying.” This reading is supported by the LXX, Vulgate, and Syriac. Also it seems to flow better with the following verse. It would be saying that God is over the rulers and can rebuke them. The former view is saying that no one rebukes kings, much less Job rebuking God.

14 tn The word בְּלִיָּעַל (bÿliyyaal) means both “worthless” and “wicked.” It is common in proverbial literature, and in later writings it became a description of Satan. It is usually found with “son of.”

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