Job 29
 The days when God preserved me
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Text
Explanation
Here Job recalls his past prosperity contrasting with misery in the next chapter
 1 ¶ Moreover Job continued his parable, and said, 
 2 Oh that I were as in months past, as in the days when God preserved me;
.3 When his candle shined upon my head, and when by his light I walked through darkness;
  Continued his parable He has finished comparing the power of God to that of man.
  When God preserved me Or "... watched over." He feels shut off from the divine comfort. He had been greatly blessed as his friends would have known.
  Candle An important item that provides power over darkness. ps01828, jb2117.
 4 As I was in the days of my youth, when the secret of God was upon my tabernacle;
 5 When the Almighty was yet with me, when my children were about me;
 6 When I washed my steps with butter, and the rock poured me out rivers of oil;
  Youth Literally "autumn." Job had probably lived for many years to have gained the respect indicated in this chapter.
  Secret From sod with the idea of intimate freindship. Better translated "council."
  Almighty ... children Two sources of comfort. He didn't mention his wife.
  Butter ... oil An ample supply was a sign of prosperity. Oil had many uses de3213.
 7 ¶ When I went out to the gate through the city, when I prepared my seat in the street!
 8 The young men saw me, and hid themselves: and the aged arose, and stood up.

  Gate The place of judgment and business transactions. His participation at the gate is the third of three souces of his happiness. The other two are in v5. See ne0801, ne0816.
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  " through ... street!--rather, When I went out of my house, in the country (see Job 1:1, prologue) to the gate (ascending), up to the city (which was on elevated ground), and when I prepared my (judicial) seat in the market place. The market place was the place of judgment, at the gate or propylaea of the city, such as is found in the remains of Nineveh and Persepolis (Isa 59:14; Ps 55:11; 127:5)." (JFB Commentary)
  "hid--not literally; rather, "stepped backwards," reverentially. The aged, who were already seated, arose and remained standing (Hebrew) until Job seated himself. Oriental manners." ibid.
 9 The princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on their mouth.
 10 The nobles held their peace, and their tongue cleaved to the roof of their mouth.
  Princes refrained From disagreement with Job. See jb2105.
 11 When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; and when the eye saw me, it gave witness to me:
 12 Because I delivered the poor that cried, and the fatherless, and him that had none to help him.
  Heard me Should read only "heard." People heard about him.
  Delivered the poor Apparently in judgment. An OT principle of justice. ps07212, pr2113, pr2411, is0117. Compare the accusations of Eliphaz jb2205.
 13 The blessing of him that was ready to perish came upon me: and I caused the widow's heart to sing for joy.
.14 I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.
  Righteousness ... clothed We may receive the robe of Christ's righteousness. Job was like Christ in that he had chosen such a "robe." is6110, ps10918.
 15 I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame.
 16 I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out.
 17 And I brake the jaws of the wicked, and plucked the spoil out of his teeth.
  Cause I new not Rather "cause of him whom I knew not."
  Brake ... wicked Job must have had some enemies, too.
 18 ¶ Then I said, I shall die in my nest, and I shall multiply my days as the sand.
.19 My root was spread out by the waters, and the dew lay all night upon my branch. 
 20 My glory was fresh in me, and my bow was renewed in my hand.
  Root ... by the waters Compare ge2739, ps000103, ps13303, je1708.
  Bow Symbol for strength ge4924.
 21 Unto me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence at my counsel.
 22 After my words they spake not again; and my speech dropped upon them.
 23 And they waited for me as for the rain; and they opened their mouth wide as for the latter rain.
  Speech dropped ... rain Valued in dry climates. Compare de1114, je0303, jl0223, ho0603.
 24 If I laughed on them, they believed it not; and the light of my countenance they cast not down.
 25 I chose out their way, and sat chief, and dwelt as a king in the army, as one that comforteth the mourners.
 24 - Umbreit's translation: "'I smiled kindly on those who trusted not,' that is, in times of danger I cheered those in despondency. And they could not cast down (by their despondency) my serenity of countenance (flowing from trust in God) (Pr 16:15; Ps 104:15)."
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