23:15 That is why I am terrified in his presence;
when I consider, I am afraid because of him.
the Almighty has terrified me.
23:17 Yet I have not been silent because of the darkness,
because of the thick darkness
that covered my face. 2
1 tn The verb הֵרַךְ (kherakh) means “to be tender”; in the Piel it would have the meaning “to soften.” The word is used in parallel constructions with the verbs for “fear.” The implication is that God has made Job fearful.
2 tn This is a very difficult verse. The Hebrew text literally says: “for I have not been destroyed because of darkness, and because of my face [which] gloom has covered.” Most commentators omit the negative adverb, which gives the meaning that Job is enveloped in darkness and reduced to terror. The verb נִצְמַתִּי (nitsmatti) means “I have been silent” (as in Arabic and Aramaic), and so obviously the negative must be retained – he has not been silent.