Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 12:10

In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind?
New American Standard

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Atheism;   Design;   God;   Philosophy;   Religion;   Wisdom;   The Topic Concordance - God;   Government;   Nations;   Strength;   Wisdom;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Life, Natural;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Soul;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Animals;   Death, Mortality;   Providence of God;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Greatness of God;   Hypocrisy;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Breath;   Job, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Breathing;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Mankind;   Providence;   Spirit;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Holy Spirit;   Judah I.;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing - חי כל נפש nephesh col chai, "the soul of all life."

And the breath of all mankind - בשר כל ורוח veruach col besar, "and the spirit or breath of all flesh." Does not the first refer to the immortal soul, the principle of all intellectual life; and the latter to the breath, respiration, the grand means by which animal existence is continued? See Job 10:1.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-12.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing - Margin, “Life.” The margin is the more correct rendering. The idea is, that all are under the control of God. He gives life, and health, and happiness when he pleases, and when he chooses he takes them away. His sovereignty is manifested, says Job, in the inferior creation, or among the beasts of the field, the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of heaven.

And the breath of all mankind - Margin, “Flesh of man.” The margin is in accordance with the Hebrew. The meaning is, that man is subjected to the same laws as the rest of the creation. God is a sovereign, and the same great principles of administration may be seen in all his works.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-12.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing,.... Of every animal, of every brute creature, as distinct from man, in the next clause: the life of everyone of them is from him, and it is continued by him as long as he pleases, nor can it be taken away without his leave; two sparrows, which are not worth more than a farthing, not one of them falls to the ground, or dies without the knowledge and will of God, Matthew 10:29; of the soul or spirit of beasts, see Ecclesiastes 3:21;

and the breath of all mankind; the breath of man is originally from God, he at first breathed into man the breath of life; and though this is in his nostrils, which makes him of little account, yet it would not continue there long, was it not in the hand, and under the care and providence of God; the breath of a king, as well as the heart of a king, is in the hand of the Lord: the breath of that great monarch Belshazzar, king of Babylon, was in the hand of God, Daniel 5:23; and so is the breath of every peasant; and as when he takes away the breath of other creatures, they die and return to the dust; such is the case of man when God takes away his breath; all our times are in his hand, to be born, to live and die, all is at his dispose: or "the spirit of all the flesh of men"F16רוח כל בשר איש "spiritus omnis carnis viri?" Pagninus, Montanus, Schmidt, Schultens, Michaelis. , or of all men's flesh; his rational soul, as distinguished from his flesh or body, this is from God, supported in its being by him, and ever will be, being immortal, and will never die.

Copyright Statement
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855
Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-12.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

the soul — that is, the animal life. Man, reasons Job, is subjected to the same laws as the lower animals.

Copyright Statement
These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-12.html. 1871-8.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 12:10 In whose hand [is] the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

Ver. 10. In whose hand is the soul of every living thing] That is, the life of every beast, flowing from a sensitive soul, Leviticus 17:10-11. This, God both giveth to the creature and conserveth it; he suffereth it not to be taken away from little sparrows, or the like, without order from him; much less befalleth any such thing to man without his singular providence, since our very hairs also are numbered, Matthew 9:30, Luke 12:7. The Jewish doctors do therefore offer manifest injury to Job when they say, that he held indeed that God created, and doth preserve, the several kinds of things, but permitteth the particulars and individuals to be hap hazard; whereas here he delivereth his judgment plainly to the contrary, when he saith,

And the breath of all mankind] Heb. The spirit of all man’s flesh (and so Broughton readeth it), that is, of every man’s body: hence God is called the God of the spirits of all flesh, Numbers 16:22, and the Father of spirits, Hebrews 12:9, and the former of the spirit of man within him, Zechariah 12:1. "My times are in thy hand," saith David, Psalms 31:15. God preserves our lives as a light in a lantern, and we may be glad it is in so safe a hand; we should therefore honour him, as Daniel telleth Belshazzar, Daniel 5:23; yea, "let everything that hath breath praise the Lord," Psalms 150:6; or, as the Hebrew hath it, Let every breath praise the Lord: as oft as we breathe we are to breathe out the praise of God, and to make our breath like the smoke of the tabernacle; this we should do the rather because our breath is in our nostrils, Isaiah 2:22, every moment ready to puff out, and the grave cannot praise God, death cannot celebrate him, Isaiah 38:18.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 12:10". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-12.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

In whose hand, i.e. at whose absolute disposal, it is to give it, or take it away, when and how it seemeth good to him.

The soul; the life, or the soul the principle of life.

Of every living thing, i.e. of all unreasonable creatures, of which he spoke Job 12:7, opposed to man in the last words.

The breath, or, the spirit, as that word is commonly used, i.e. the immortal soul; which is no less a creature, and in God’s power to dispose of it, than the animal soul of unreasonable creatures.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 12:10". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-12.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

10.The breath of all mankind — Literally, the spirit of all the flesh of man. The soul (nephesh) is the principle of natural life which man shares with the inferior creation; while the spirit (rouahh) is that higher endowment belonging, among animals, exclusively to man, by which he is allied to angels and to God.

 

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-12.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 12:10. In whose hand is the soul — That is, the life, or the principle of life; of every living thing — That is, of all irrational animals, of which he spake, Job 12:7, opposed to man in the last words of this verse. He means, in whose absolute power it is to give life or to take it away, when and how it seemeth good to him; and the breath of all mankind — Or, the spirit, as the word רוח, ruach, here used, commonly means; that is, the immortal soul, which is no less a creature, and in God’s power to dispose of it, than the animal soul or life of brutes.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 12:10". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-12.html. 1857.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

soul = life. Hebrew. nephesh. App-13.

breath = spirit. Hebrew. ruach.

mankind = flesh of man. Hebrew. "ish. App-14.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/job-12.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind. The soul - i:e., the animal life. Man, reasons Job, is subjected to the same laws as the lower animals.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-12.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.
whose hand
Numbers 16:22; Daniel 5:23; Acts 17:25,28
soul
or, life. the breath.
27:3; 34:14,15; Genesis 2:7; 6:17; Psalms 104:29; 146:3,4
mankind
Heb. flesh of man.
John 3:6
Reciprocal: Numbers 26:51 - GeneralNumbers 27:16 - the Lord;  1 Kings 17:17 - that there was;  Job 12:15 - Behold;  Job 14:5 - his days;  Job 21:16 - Lo;  Psalm 90:3 - Thou;  Isaiah 42:5 - he that giveth;  Hebrews 12:9 - the Father

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 12:10". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-12.html.

The People's Bible by Joseph Parker

"Handfuls of Purpose"

For All Gleaners

"... the soul of every living thing? Job 12:10

Observe, not only "every living thing," but actually the soul of it.—There is great meaning in this expression; it shows that we do not see the life in its innermost recesses and springs, but only some appearance or shape of it from the outside.—We have often said that no man has seen himself: the man is within the man; the life is within the life.—This rule holds good with regard to everything round about us; notably, it holds good with regard to the Church, for the Church is within the Church, that is to say it is a spiritual reality, of which the visible Church is but the outward embodiment; and if we are not members of the spiritual kingdom it is of no importance what eminence we have attained with regard to formal position or membership.—The rule holds good also in regard to the Bible: in an emphatic sense, the Bible is within the Bible; a man may read the merely literary Bible from end to end, and know absolutely nothing about the revelation of God: that revelation is only granted to the wise and understanding heart, to those who are simple of mind, single and earnest in purpose, whose one desire is to know what God has said, and to do it: hence criticism can never get out of the Bible the soul of its living things: only sympathy with God, pureness of heart, and all the quiet graces of love, meekness, and docility, can reap great spoils in the harvest-field of the Bible.—The rule holds good also with regard to all ecclesiastical sacraments: they may be good or bad, useful or useless, just as we approach them or appropriate them.—We may turn them into mere idols and so may actually sin against the very purpose of their constitution; or we may regard them as instruments, mediums, or vehicles, through which God is pleased in some way to show himself to the waiting and expectant heart; used in this latter way, they become in very deed means of grace, valueless when viewed purely and absolutely in themselves but infinitely precious when regarded as the medium through which God descends upon the loving heart.—The same rule applies to the right interpretation of what is called material nature: who can tell what is behind it all? Agnostics themselves acknowledge that even in matter there is something which they cannot comprehend. Agnosticism, or know-notism, is not, therefore, confined to what are usually known as spiritual subjects, but has a direct bearing upon things which are substantial and visible.—All these secrets of life being more or less beyond us, we are led up at once to the great principle that only God can be judge of all.—We know nothing as it really is.—He alone is the critic, whose penetration can pierce to the innermost thought, motive, and purpose of the heart; with him, therefore, must be left all judgment and all destiny.—It is better to fall into the hands of God than into the hands of man.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Parker, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 12:10". The People's Bible by Joseph Parker. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jpb/job-12.html. 1885-95.