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Job 9:4

Context

9:4 He is wise in heart 1  and mighty 2  in strength 3 

who has resisted 4  him and remained safe? 5 

Job 9:19

Context

9:19 If it is a matter of strength, 6 

most certainly 7  he is the strong one!

And if it is a matter of justice,

he will say, ‘Who will summon me?’ 8 

1 tn The genitive phrase translated “in heart” would be a genitive of specification, specifying that the wisdom of God is in his intelligent decisions.

sn The heart is the seat of intelligence and understanding, the faculty of decision making.

2 sn The words אַמִּיץ (’ammits) and כֹּחַ (koakh) are synonyms, the first meaning “sturdy; mighty; robust,” and the second “strength.” It too can be interpreted as a genitive of specification – God is mighty with respect to his power. But that comes close to expressing a superlative idea (like “song of songs” or “anger of his wrath”).

3 tn The first half of the verse simply has “wise of heart and mighty of strength.” The entire line is a casus pendens that will refer to the suffix on אֵלָיו (’elayv) in the second colon. So the question is “Who has resisted the one who is wise of heart and mighty of strength?” Again, the rhetorical question is affirming that no one has done this.

4 tn The verb is the Hiphil of the verb קָשָׁה (qashah, “to be hard”). It frequently is found with the word for “neck,” describing people as “stiff-necked,” i.e., stubborn, unbending. So the idea of resisting God fits well. The fact that this word occurs in Exodus with the idea of hardening the heart against God may indicate that there is an allusion to Pharaoh here.

5 tn The use of שָׁלֵם (shalem) in the Qal is rare. It has been translated “remain safe” by E. Dhorme, “survived” by the NEB, “remained unscathed” by the NAB and NIV, or “succeeded” by KJV, G. R. Driver.

6 tn The MT has only “if of strength.”

7 tn “Most certainly” translates the particle הִנֵּה (hinneh).

8 tn The question could be taken as “who will summon me?” (see Jer 49:19 and 50:44). This does not make immediate sense. Some have simply changed the suffix to “who will summon him.” If the MT is retained, then supplying something like “he will say” could make the last clause fit the whole passage. Another option is to take it as “Who will reveal it to me?” – i.e., Job could be questioning his friends’ qualifications for being God’s emissaries to bring God’s charges against him (cf. KJV, NKJV; and see 10:2 where Job uses the same verb in the Hiphil to request that God reveal what his sin has been that has led to his suffering).

sn Job is saying that whether it is a trial of strength or an appeal to justice, he is unable to go against God.



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