Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures

Job 39

Verses 1-30

Job 39:10 Canst thou bind the unicorn with his band in the furrow? or will he harrow the valleys after thee?

Job 39:9-10Word Study on "the unicorn" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "unicorn" ( רְאֵם) (H 7214) probably refers the wild bull. Therefore, modern English versions often translated the word as "wild ox." The Enhanced Strong says the Hebrew word is found 9 times in the Old Testament and is translated "unicorn" all 9 times in the KJV. This word is only found in Hebrew poetry.

Job 39:27 Doth the eagle mount up at thy command, and make her nest on high?

Job 39:27Word Study on "the eagle" - Gesenius says the Hebrew word "eagle" ( נֶשֶׁר) (H 5404) means, "eagle (or other large bird of prey." The Enhanced Strong says it is used 26 times in the Old Testament, bring translated in the KJV as "eagle 26." Gesenius also tells us that this Hebrew word can carry a wider range of meanings beside "eagle." He says that the reference in Micah 1:16 refers to a bird that is bald, which more closely describes a vulture than an eagle, and Job 39:30 and Proverbs 30:17 describe a bird that eats carcasses, something more likely to describe a vulture than an eagle.

Micah 1:16, "Make thee bald, and poll thee for thy delicate children; enlarge thy baldness as the eagle; for they are gone into captivity from thee."

Job 39:27-30, "Doth the eagle mount up at thy command, and make her nest on high? She dwelleth and abideth on the rock, upon the crag of the rock, and the strong place. From thence she seeketh the prey, and her eyes behold afar off. Her young ones also suck up blood: and where the slain are, there is she."

Proverbs 30:17, "The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it."

Note also a more likely reference to the vulture than the eagle in the New Testament:

Matthew 24:28, "For wheresoever the carcase Isaiah, there will the eagles be gathered together."

Job 39:28 She dwelleth and abideth on the rock, upon the crag of the rock, and the strong place.

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Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Job 39". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/job-39.html. 2013.