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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Job 41

 

 


Verses 1-34

Job 41:1-34 — God Describes Leviathan to Job - In Job 41:1-10 God describes to Job the greatest aquatic animal under His creation, which in Hebrew is called "leviathan" ( לִוְיָתָן). Regarding the identification of this sea creature, the most popular view understands this creature as a crocodile, which inhabits the rivers. The view of a crocodile is supported by the verses describing leviathan's reptile characteristics: fierce teeth ( Job 41:14), and his scales ( Job 41:7; Job 41:15; Job 41:23). Another popular view is to interpret leviathan as the whale. He is a creature that makes the sea boil ( Job 41:31). However, a whale does not have rows of scales ( Job 41:15), but rather skin, being a mammal. Nor does a whale have a distinct neck, as leviathan ( Job 41:22). In my opinion, this passage probably describes a dinosaur of the sea, as does the previous passage about "behemoth" describe a land dinosaur. This view is supported by another passage in Psalm 104:26 that describes leviathan as a creature that plays in the sea. This cannot be a crocodile, which primarily inhabits rivers; nor can it be a whale because it is reptilian.

Psalm 104:26, "There go the ships: there is that leviathan, whom thou hast made to play therein."

Job 41:1 Canst thou draw out leviathan with an hook? or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down?

Job 41:1Word Study on "leviathan" - Strong says the Hebrew word "leviathan" "liv-yaw-thawn"" ( לִוְיָתָן) (H 3882) literally refers to "a wreathed animal, i.e. a serpent (especially the crocodile or some other large sea- monster)." Strong says it figuratively refers to "the constellation of the dragon; also as a symbol of Babylon." Ancient translations are of little help. For example, Wycliffe reads "leuyathan." 65]

65] Josiah Forshall and Frederic Madden, editors, The Books of Job ,, Psalm ,, Proverbs ,, Ecclesiastes , and the Song of Solomon According to the Wycliffite Version made by Nicholas de Hereford About A.D 1381and Revised by John Purvey About A.D 1388 (Oxford: The Clarendon Press, c 1850, 1881), 55.

Job 41:10 None is so fierce that dare stir him up: who then is able to stand before me?

Job 41:10Comments- Job 41:10 reveals the purpose of God's speeches to Job , which is to reveal through creation His own omnipotence and Job's frailty and need of redemption.

Job 41:25 When he raiseth up himself, the mighty are afraid: by reason of breakings they purify themselves.

Job 41:25 — — Comments- A crocodile does not raise himself up upon his hindquarters.

Job 41:31 He maketh the deep to boil like a pot: he maketh the sea like a pot of ointment.

Job 41:31Comments- The crocodile is not considered a "sea" creature, but rather, an inhabitant of rivers, with some species occasioning the sea coasts.

Job 41:33 Upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear.

Job 41:33 — — Comments- Leviathan is larger than any land animal that God created.

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Job 41:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/job-41.html. 2013.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020
the First Week of Advent
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