it entwines its roots around a pile of rocks and looks for a place among the stones.
"His roots wrap around a rock pile, He grasps a house of stones.
Its roots grow down through a pile of rocks to hold it firm.
Spreading everywhere, overtaking the flowers, getting a foothold even in the rocks.
His roots are twisted round the stones, forcing their way in between them.
Their roots twine around the stoneheap; they live among the rocks.
His roots wrap around the rock heap, And look for a place in the stones.
|NET © [draft] ITL|
|NET © Notes||
1 tn Cheyne reads “spring” or “well” rather than “heap.” However, this does not fit the parallelism very well, and so he emends the second half as well. Nevertheless the Hebrew text needs no emending here.
2 tn The expression “of stones” is added for clarification of what the heap would be. It refers to the object around which the roots would grow. The parallelism with “house of stones” makes this reading highly probable.
3 tn The idea is that the plant grows, looking for a place to grow among the stones. Some trees grow so tightly around the rocks and stones that they are impossible to uproot. The rocky ground where it grows forms “a house of stones.” The LXX supports an emendation from יְחֱזֶה (yÿkhezeh, “it looks”) to יִחְיֶה (yikhyeh, “it lives”). Others have tried to emend the text in a variety of ways: “pushes” (Budde), “cleave” (Gordis), “was opposite” (Driver), or “run against” (NEB, probably based on G. R. Driver). If one were to make a change, the reading with the LXX would be the easiest to defend, but there is no substantial reason to do that. The meaning is about the same without such a change.
4 sn The idea seems to be that the stones around which the roots of the tree wrap themselves suggest strength and security for the tree, but uprooting comes to it nevertheless (v. 18). The point is that the wicked may appear to be living in security and flourishing, yet can be quickly destroyed (H. H. Rowley, Job [NCBC], 74).