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Bible Commentaries

Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Job 29

Verse 2

Me. Job perceiving that his friends made no reply, (Calmet) and yet did not appear satisfied, (Haydock) explains how he had behaved in prosperity, in answer to the insinuations of Eliphaz; (chap. xxii. 5.) and what miseries he now experienced; though he maintains these were not inflicted on account of his sins. He continues this discourse in the two next chapters. (Calmet) --- He wishes to be restored to his former state, for his own vindication, (Haydock) and that he might exercise the works of mercy. (Ven. Bede)

Verse 4

Youth. Hebrew, also "autumn or winter," which are seasons of repose, when people enjoy the fruits of their labours. --- Tabernacle, and all consulted me as an oracle. (Calmet) -- Septuagint, "when God made the visit of my house," (Haydock) and filled it with blessings, like that of Obededom, 2 Kings vi. 12.

Verse 6

Butter. Many understand "cream." But butter was used to anoint the body, as well as oil. Non omittendum in eo ( butyro ) olei vim esse, & Barbaros omnes infantesque nostros ita ungi. (Pliny, [Natural History?] ix. 41.) --- Oil. These hyperbolical expressions denote the utmost fertility, Genesis xlix. 11. (Calmet) --- Septuagint have "milk." On all sides, Job could behold his rich pastures and cattle, (Haydock) so that he might have washed his feet in butter and milk. The rocks also were covered with olive trees; (Menochius) or the stone used for a press made the oil gush forth. (Cajetan) (Sa)

Verse 7

To the gate. Septuagint, "early." --- Chair, or throne, where Job sat in judgment. (Haydock) --- It appears evident that he was the prince in his city. Idumea had at first several petty kings at the same time, Genesis xxxvi. 15. (Calmet) --- But Job had several princes (ver. 9.; Haydock) under him. (Pineda)

Verse 11

Gave. Septuagint, "winked," through approbation. (Calmet)

Verse 16

Diligently, not passing sentence at random. I also endeavoured to do justice to those who durst not make any complaint. The prince ought to have an eye to all things. (Calmet)

Verse 17

Prey, which he had extorted from the poor. (Menochius)

Verse 18

Nest, in security, and among my children. (Calmet) --- Palm-tree. Septuagint, "But I said, my youth shall grow old like the shoot of the palm-tree: I shall live a long time." This is clearly the meaning of this version, (Haydock) as appears from the word Greek: stelechos, "a shoot (Calmet) or trunk." (Menochius) --- Yet as Greek: phoinix, signifies also "a Ph'9cnician, and the ph'9cnix," some have explained this passage of the latter, which seems agreeable to the mention of a nest. Many fabulous accounts have been given of this bird, of which only one is supposed to exist at a time, rising from its parent's ashes; which, if true, (Calmet) would have been very (Haydock) beautifully applicable to a future resurrection. (St. Clement of Rome, ep. 1 Cor.; St. Ambrose, de fide Res. ii. 59, &c.) See Solin, xlii.; Tacitus, Ann. vi. This uncertain bird may have been confounded with the bird of Paradise. Palm-trees live a long time, and multiply shoots all round them surprisingly. (Pliny, [Natural History?] xiii. 4., and xvi. 44.) --- Yet the Scripture never elsewhere uses the term eul for this tree. The moderns generally translate, "I shall multiply my days like the sand," which is a very common expression. (Calmet, Diss.) --- The following verse seems, however, favourable to the sense of the Septuagint and Vulgate, though the heavy nature of sand, which "remains" in its place, might serve to express the confidence which Job had of continuing for a long time in the midst of prosperity. (Haydock)

Verse 19

Harvest. Protestants, "branch." (Psalm i. 3., and Isaias xviii. 4.) (Haydock)

Verse 20

Bow, strength. I thought my glory would never end. (Menochius)

Verse 23

Shower, in autumn, at which season only, and in spring, it rained in those countries. (Calmet) (Deuteronomy xi. 14.) (Menochius) --- It would, of course, be very acceptable after the drought of summer, Proverbs xvi. 15.

Verse 24

Earth, with neglect. (Calmet) --- My attendants could scarcely believe their own eyes, through joy, (Haydock) when I assumed a more familiar air with them. (Calmet) --- They still revered my authority. (Menochius)

Verse 25

With. Hebrew, "in his army, like one comforting people in mourning." (Haydock) --- Job was not merely as, or like a king, but also one in effect; exercising the power, (ver. 7.) and wearing the royal robes, ver. 14. (St. Isidore; Ven. Bede, &c.) (Worthington)

Verse 28


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Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 29". "Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". 1859.