"God has made me a byword to everyone, a man in whose face people spit.
"But He has made me a byword of the people, And I am one at whom men spit.
"God has made a mockery of me among the people; they spit in my face.
"God, you've made me the talk of the town--people spit in my face;
He has made me a word of shame to the peoples; I have become a mark for their sport.
"He has made me a byword of the peoples, and I am one before whom people spit.
"But He has made me a byword of the people, And I have become one in whose face men spit.
|NET © [draft] ITL|
|NET © Notes||
1 tn The verb is the third person, and so God is likely the subject. The LXX has “you have made me.” So most commentators clarify the verb in some such way. However, without an expressed subject it can also be taken as a passive.
2 tn The word “byword” is related to the word translated “proverb” in the Bible (מָשָׁל, mashal). Job’s case is so well known that he is synonymous with afflictions and with abuse by people.
3 tn The word תֹפֶת (tofet) is a hapax legomenon. The expression is “and a spitting in/to the face I have become,” i.e., “I have become one in whose face people spit.” Various suggestions have been made, including a link to Tophet, but they are weak. The verse as it exists in the MT is fine, and fits the context well.