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Job 15:28-29

Context

15:28 he lived in ruined towns 1 

and in houses where 2  no one lives,

where they are ready to crumble into heaps. 3 

15:29 He will not grow rich,

and his wealth will not endure,

nor will his possessions 4  spread over the land.

1 sn K&D 11:266 rightly explains that these are not cities that he, the wicked, has destroyed, but that were destroyed by a judgment on wickedness. Accordingly, Eliphaz is saying that the wicked man is willing to risk such a curse in his confidence in his prosperity (see further H. H. Rowley, Job [NCBC], 113).

2 tn The verbal idea serves here to modify “houses” as a relative clause; so a relative pronoun is added.

3 tn The Hebrew has simply “they are made ready for heaps.” The LXX translates it, “what they have prepared, let others carry away.” This would involve a complete change of the last word.

4 tn This word מִנְלָם (minlam) also is a hapax legomenon, although almost always interpreted to mean “possession” (with Arabic manal) and repointed as מְנֹלָם (mÿnolam). M. Dahood further changes “earth” to the netherworld, and interprets it to mean “his possessions will not go down to the netherworld (“Value of Ugaritic for Textual Criticism,” Bib 40 [1959]: 164-66). Others suggest it means “ear of grain,” either from the common word for “ears of grain” or a hapax legomenon in Deuteronomy 23:26 [25].



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