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Job 22:5-9


22:5 Is not your wickedness great 1 

and is there no end to your iniquity?

22:6 “For you took pledges 2  from your brothers

for no reason,

and you stripped the clothing from the naked. 3 

22:7 You gave the weary 4  no water to drink

and from the hungry you withheld food.

22:8 Although you were a powerful man, 5  owning land, 6 

an honored man 7  living on it, 8 

22:9 you sent widows away empty-handed,

and the arms 9  of the orphans you crushed. 10 

1 tn The adjective רַבָּה (rabbah) normally has the idea of “great” in quantity (“abundant,” ESV) rather than “great” in quality.

2 tn The verb חָבַל (khaval) means “to take pledges.” In this verse Eliphaz says that Job not only took as pledge things the poor need, like clothing, but he did it for no reason.

3 tn The “naked” here refers to people who are poorly clothed. Otherwise, a reading like the NIV would be necessary: “you stripped the clothes…[leaving them] naked.” So either he made them naked by stripping their garments off, or they were already in rags.

4 tn The term עָיֵף (’ayef) can be translated “weary,” “faint,” “exhausted,” or “tired.” Here it may refer to the fainting because of thirst – that would make a good parallel to the second part.

5 tn The idiom is “a man of arm” (= “powerful”; see Ps 10:15). This is in comparison to the next line, “man of face” (= “dignity; high rank”; see Isa 3:5).

6 tn Heb “and a man of arm, to whom [was] land.” The line is in contrast to the preceding one, and so the vav here introduces a concessive clause.

7 tn The expression is unusual: “the one lifted up of face.” This is the “honored one,” the one to whom the dignity will be given.

8 tn Many commentators simply delete the verse or move it elsewhere. Most take it as a general reference to Job, perhaps in apposition to the preceding verse.

9 tn The “arms of the orphans” are their helps or rights on which they depended for support.

10 tn The verb in the text is Pual: יְדֻכָּא (yÿdukka’, “was [were] crushed”). GKC 388 §121.b would explain “arms” as the complement of a passive imperfect. But if that is too difficult, then a change to Piel imperfect, second person, will solve the difficulty. In its favor is the parallelism, the use of the second person all throughout the section, and the reading in all the versions. The versions may have simply assumed the easier reading, however.

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