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Bible Commentaries
Job 30

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New TestamentsSutcliffe's Commentary

Verses 1-31

Job 30:1 . The dogs of my flock. Job does not say this through pride, for he owns that the slave and himself were formed by the same hand: Job 31:15. He says it rather with a view to describe the sin and the folly of the untutored race.

Job 30:4 . Who cut up mallows and juniper-roots for their meat. The rabbins are irrelevant here. Calmet is silent, and Schultens with all his Arabic is uncertain. But the monkeys in South Africa, when the leaves are decayed, will often guide the hungry Hottentot where to find roots. Vaillant’s Travels.

Job 30:7 . They brayed under the nettles. The LXX, they sighed; growled out their noisy and revolting speeches under the bushes.

Job 30:8 . They were children of fools. Of all the versions the English seems the least successful; better, flagitious children, children of men without a name, vile beyond comparison with earth.

Job 30:18 . Force of my disease. These words are deficient in the Hebrew, but copied in the Latin from some authorized reading. The LXX read, “He has with great strength taken hold of my robe, and bound me by the collar of my coat,” as wrestlers do to throw their antagonists to the ground. The text is obscure, which occasions variations in all the versions. The French reads, “The colour of my vestment is changed;” and it would seem, by the soporation of his sores; a reading altogether at issue with the LXX.

Job 30:29 . A brother to dragons. Job sat in solitude, hearing the hissings and wailings of serpents in the night. See note on Deuteronomy 32:33.


Job was truly a philanthropic character. His camp, his city, and his heart were open, to give the wretched wanderers work and bread. They found a home and an asylum under his wings. It is the character of a happy man to make others happy too. But how mortifying when those Arabian wanderers found Job, as they supposed, overthrown and lost, that they should turn their tongues against the afflicted, and make him the scornful subject of their songs. Nay, not only the poor, but God himself seemed to fight against a worm. “Thou holdest me with thy strong hand. I cry to thee, and thou dost not hear. When I looked for good, behold evil came.”

Job’s anguish was made the more grievous by contrast with former times. My harp is turned to mourning. In the ancient church, music was always joined with devotion, but the least so in christian assemblies. It guides and enlivens psalmody. But alas, alas, our choirs, through vanity and pride, put the people to silence by a superabundance of new tunes, which have little merit, except novelty. It grieves and wounds the church, who love the old melodies: assuredly these singers must give up their account with shame.

Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 30". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jsc/job-30.html. 1835.
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