Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 12:5

"He who is at ease holds calamity in contempt, As prepared for those whose feet slip.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Afflictions and Adversities;   Persecution;   Prosperity;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Feet, the;  
Dictionaries:
Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Greatness of God;   Hypocrisy;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Job, the Book of;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Feet;   Lamp;   Slip;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Lamp;  

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

He that is ready to slip with his feet - The man whose feet waver or totter; that is, the man in adversity; see Proverbs 25:19. A man in prosperity is represented as standing firm; one in adversity as wavering, or falling; see Psalm 73:2.

But as for me, my feet were almost gone;

My steps had well nigh slipped.

There is much difficulty in this passage, and it has by no means been removed by the labor of critics. The reader may consult Rosenmuller, Good, and Schultens, on the verse, for a more full attempt to illustrate its meaning. Dr. Good, after Reiske and Parkhurst, has offered an explanation by rendering the whole passage thus:

The just, the perfect man is a laughing-stock to the proud,

A derision amidst the sunshine of the prosperous,

While ready to slip with his foot.

It does not appear to me, however, that this translation can be fairly educed from the Hebrew text, and I am disposed to acquiesce in the more common and obvious interpretation. According to that, the idea is, that a man in adversity, when failing from a high condition of honor, is regarded as an almost extinguished lamp, that is now held in contempt, and is cast away. When the torch was blazing, it was regarded as of value; when nearly extinguished, it would be regarded as worthless, and would be cast away. So when a man was in prosperity, he would be looked up to as a guide and example. In adversity, his counsels would be rejected, and he would be looked upon with contempt. Nothing can be more certain or more common than the fact here adverted to. The rich and the great are looked up to with respect and veneration. Their words and actions have an influence which those of no other men have. When they begin to fall, others are willing to hasten their fall. Long cherished but secret envy begins to show itself; those who wish to rise rejoice in their ruin, and they are looked upon with contempt in proportion to their former honor, rank, and power. They are regarded as an extinguished torch - of no value, and are cast away.

In the thought - In the mind, or the view.

Of him that is at ease - In a state of comfort and prosperity. He finds no sympathy from them. Job doubtless meant to apply this to his friends. They were then at ease, and were prosperous. Not suffering pain, and not overwhelmed with poverty, they now looked with the utmost composure on him - as they would on a torch which was burned out, and which there would be no hope of rekindling.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-12.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

He that is ready to slip with his feet,.... Not into sin, though this is often the case of good men, but into calamities and afflictions; and Job means himself, and every just upright man in the like circumstances: or he that is "prepared" or "destined" to be among them, that "totter" and stagger in their "feet"F9נכון למועדי רגל "destinatus vacillantibus pede", Schmidt; so Michaelis. ; that cannot stand upon their feet, but fall to the ground; which may describe man in declining and distressing circumstances; or that is appointed to be the laughing stock of such as are unstable in the word and ways of God; double minded men, hypocrites, and formal professors, that totter and stagger at everything they meet with disagreeable to the flesh: with such, a poor afflicted saint is laughed to scorn; he

is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease; who are in affluent circumstances, enjoy great prosperity, live in plenty, and are not in trouble as others; their hearts are at ease: now with such, poor good men are had in great contempt; they are despised at heart, in the thoughts of such persons, if they do not in words express it; they are like a lamp just going out, which is neglected, and looked upon as useless; or like a torch burnt to the end, when it is thrown away; and thus it is with men, while the lamp of prosperity burns clear and bright, they are valued and had in esteem, but when their lamp becomes dim, and is almost, or quite extinguished, they are despised, see Psalm 123:3; some apply this to Christ, who was a lamp or light, a great one, but despised of men, and even as a light; they loved darkness rather than light; and especially by the Pharisees, who were at ease, settled on their lees, that trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others; and this is true of Gospel ministers, though bright and burning lights, and even of every good man, in whom the true light of grace, and of the Gospel, shines, and especially when under afflictive circumstances. Some, instead of a "lamp despised", read, "for" or "because of calamity despised"F11לפיד בוז "ad calamitatem contumelia", Cocceius; "ad infortunium vilis habetur", Gussetius, p. 674. ; so Aben Ezra, which conveys the same sense, that an afflicted man is despised for his affliction; and this being the case of good men confutes the notion of Job's friends, that it always goes well with such; and their other notion of its going ill with bad men is refuted in Job 12:6.

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 12:5". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-12.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

d He that is ready to slip with [his] feet [is as] a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

(d) As the rich do not esteem a light or torch that goes out, so he despised he that falls from prosperity to adversity.
Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/job-12.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Rather, “a torch” (lamp) is an object of contempt in the thoughts of him who rests securely (is at ease), though it was prepared for the falterings of the feet [Umbreit] (Proverbs 25:19). “Thoughts” and “feet” are in contrast; also rests “securely,” and “falterings.” The wanderer, arrived at his night-quarters, contemptuously throws aside the torch which had guided his uncertain steps through the darkness. As the torch is to the wanderer, so Job to his friends. Once they gladly used his aid in their need; now they in prosperity mock him in his need.

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 12:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-12.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

He that is ready to slip with his feet is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

Slip with his feet — And fall into trouble; tho' he had formerly shone as a lamp, he is then looked upon as a lamp going out, as the snuff of a candle, which we throw to the ground and tread upon; and accordingly is despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
Bibliographical Information
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/job-12.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 12:5 He that is ready to slip with [his] feet [is as] a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

Ver. 5. He that is ready to slip with his feet] He who is in a declining, tottering condition, ready to fall and perish under the burden of his afflictions, though formerly he was looked upon and made use of as a lamp or torch, yet when he is at an under, and brought low, is shamefully slighted by such as have the world at will; like as a torch when wasted and waxen short is cast out of the hands, and trodden on with the feet of him that held it. The holiest men, if afflicted, do but smother instead of shining. When Christ himself was a man of sorrows, he was therefore despised and rejected of men, who hid, as it were, their faces from him, and esteemed him not, Isaiah 53:3. The prodigal’s elder brother speaks scornfully of him, because poor, Luke 15:30, "This thy son." He saith not, This my brother, &c. Gregory saith, that the poor just man is here compared to a lamp extinct, because he shineth inwardly by the virtue of an upright heart; but outwardly is as it were extinct, because there is nothing outward to commend him; no glorious apparel, no goodly houses, &c.; whence they are slighted by the rich wretches of this world. But such a lamp (saith he, following the Vulgate translation) is set for an appointed time; that is, the day of judgment, when he shall shine most brightly, even as the sun, &c., when the world’s favourites shall be thrust into utter darkness.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 12:5". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-12.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Job 12:5. Is ready, &c.— This is much more beautiful in the original. It is a metaphor taken from the archer, whose arrow is fitted to the string, and ready to be discharged. The word שׁאנן shaanan, here rendered at ease, doth not make so complete a sense as could be wished: its root, שׁאן shaan, particularly refers to such wicked persons as are so void of humanity, that the afflictions of their neighbours are a pleasure to them; and who are so far from endeavouring to alleviate them, that it is their delight to increase them by taunts and insults. I render the whole verse, In calamity, contempt is ready in the thoughts of the insolent, for those whose feet are tottering. Heath.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Job 12:5". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/job-12.html. 1801-1803.

Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae

DISCOURSE: 463

A WANT OF SYMPATHY CONDEMNED

Job 12:5. He that is ready to slip with his feet it as a lamp despised in the thought of him that it at ease.

THE friends of Job meant well: but, mistaking utterly his case, all that they spoke, though good in itself, was irrelevant, and tended only to aggravate his sorrows, which it was their professed intention to alleviate. The injustice of their remarks generated in him somewhat of tartness and asperity; though, considering how cruel and unjust their reflections were, we wonder not that his vindications of himself should assume somewhat of that character. But, passing by his ironical reprehension of them [Note: ver. 2.], I would call your attention to the complaint which he utters in the words which I have just read. It was a just complaint, as it respected them: and it contains a truth, which is confirmed by universal experience.

To mark the precise import of Job’s expressions, I will set before you,

I. The evil complained of—

Job did not intend to deny that his friends were possessed of humanity, or to say that kind dispositions might not be found even in ungodly men: for, where distress is great and visible, and within the reach of common remedies, there are many who will find a pleasure in relieving it. It was not this which Job designed to controvert. To enter into the full meaning of his words, we must distinctly notice,

1. The terms in which the evil is expressed—

[The afflicted person is described as “one who is ready to slip with his feet.” Now, this is not the case with persons in common afflictions. It refers to those only whose afflictions are of a peculiarly dark, complicated nature, contrary to the common course of things, or, at all events, contrary to what, according to the usual dispensations of Providence, might have been expected. These trials lead a person to complain of God himself, and to question the justice and goodness of his dealings with them. Such was the state of Asaph, when he saw the prosperity of the wicked, and compared it with the afflicted lot of God’s own faithful servants. He said, “As for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped: for I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.” Then he adds, “Verily, I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency [Note: Psalms 73:2-3; Psalms 73:13.].” Here, by reason of his trouble, this good man was ready to think that it was altogether in vain to serve the Lord.

Now, such a person meets with little compassion from those who have never experienced any similar affliction: “he is as a lamp despised, in the thought of him that is at ease.” The man that is at case in his circumstances and in his mind, cannot enter into the feelings of one who is thus dejected. He therefore looks upon the sufferer just as a man, after the sun is risen, looks upon a lamp in the street, from which he can reap no benefit, and about which he feels no concern. He will not get a ladder, in order to trim it; nor will he put himself to the expense of oil to supply it; nor does he care how soon it is extinguished, provided only that he himself be not annoyed by its smell. Like the priest and Levite in the parable, he passes by such a sufferer with unconcern, instead of getting oil and wine to pour into, and to mollify, his wounds.

This leads us to a just view of,]

2. The evil itself—

[Job was in such circumstances as his friends could not at all account for: yea, and he himself too was ready to complain of God, as acting unjustly and unmereifully towards him. Hence his friends, who came with a good design to comfort him, expressed in reality no compassion towards him, nor seemed to feel any concern, even though, by their unkind insinuations, they should drive him to despair. They did, indeed, give him good advice, on a supposition he was a hypocrite chastised of God for some secret and enormous wickedness: but, for a saint, placed in the furnace, by a wise and merciful Refiner, for his own good, and the good of all to whom his history should in future ages be made known, there was not, in all their advice, one word of comfort, or encouragement, or support. They themselves, never having been involved in such trouble, could not understand his case. When he shined as the sun in his prosperity, they could avail themselves of his light, and bask with pleasure in his beams: but, now that he was under so thick a cloud, they regarded him only “as a despised lamp,” which, having been shorn of its lustre, was left to be extinguished in utter darkness.

And such is the treatment generally given to persons circumstanced as Job was. Their sorrows being so little appreciated, they find but little sympathy. Even good people know not how to meet their case, or what to say for their relief. The blow, which has struck down the sufferer, has stunned and stupified those who, under less complicated afflictions, might have been able to administer to him: and hence he is, for the most part, left without those compassionate attentions which his sorrows require, and perhaps is regarded as one whose troubles admit not of any consolation, and of whose restoration to happiness there is no hope.]

This evil prevailing so generally, I will endeavour to shew,

II. The state of mind which it betrays—

Certainly it denotes,

1. A want of Christian knowledge—

[By Christian knowledge I mean, emphatically, the knowledge of Christ Jesus, and of all the wonders of redeeming love. Doubtless, a speculative knowledge of the Gospel a man may have, and yet be a stranger to the tender feelings of sympathy in such a case as this: (for even the devils possess a speculative knowledge of the Gospel, to a great extent:) but a practical and influential knowledge he possesses not. How can he ever have duly contemplated the compassions of Almighty God towards our fallen race? Can he have ever been impressed with the Father’s love towards us rebellious creatures, and yet feel no pity towards a suffering brother? What sense can he have of the tender mercies of our Lord, when he undertook to assume our fallen nature on purpose that he might “bear in his own sacred person our sins, and, by bearing, take away from us, for ever, our iniquities [Note: Isaiah 53:4.]?” What, I say, can he know of the length and breadth and depth and height of this immeasurable love, and remain insensible to the wants and miseries of others? I may further add, What can he know of “the love of the Holy Spirit” towards us, in undertaking for us the office of “a Comforter,” and dwelling in our polluted bosoms, as in a temple, for the express purpose of administering consolation to us, and of perfecting in us the work which the Father planned, and the Son executed, and which He, the third Person in the ever-blessed Trinity, applies? When all this love has been shewn to us on purpose to generate in us a similar love towards each other [Note: John 15:12-13. Ephesians 5:2.], what can he know of this stupendous mystery, who displays it not in its effects? If it be true respecting those who sympathize not with others in their bodily necessities, that “they have not the love of God in them [Note: 1 John 3:17.],” much more is it true, that they who “shut up their bowels of compassion from a brother” under the pressure of spiritual troubles, can possess but little knowledge of that mystery which unites all in one body, and causes every member to participate in the feelings and necessities of the whole body [Note: 1 Corinthians 12:25-26.].]

2. A want of Christian experience—

[Some find comparatively few conflicts in the divine life: others have to maintain a severe warfare, by which they are often reduced to great straits. Now, it is to these latter that I refer, when I speak of Christian experience. It is by no means uncommon for persons, at their first awakening, to be bowed down with fear and terrible apprehensions of the divine displeasure. It was thus with the first converts on the day of Pentecost: “they were pricked to the heart; and cried out in great agony of soul, Men and brethren, what shall we do?” In subsequent stages of the divine life, too, many are brought into deep waters, where, like David, they are apprehensive of being swallowed up, and utterly destroyed [Note: Psalms 69:2.]. They “pass through fire and through water [Note: Isaiah 43:2.];” and if they were not succoured from on high by more than ordinary communications of grace, they would sink and perish. Now, these persons can enter into the feelings of others who are cast down by reason of their afflictions; and can suggest to them many suitable reflections, such as perhaps the angels suggested to our Lord, when tempted in the wilderness [Note: Matthew 4:11.], and when agonizing in the garden of Gethsemane [Note: Luke 22:43.]. But the man who has no sympathy with persons under such circumstances, shews, that he knows but little either of temptations or deliverances; since these deep experiences are vouchsafed to some for the express purpose, that they may thereby be both qualified and disposed to administer to others the consolations with which they themselves “are comforted of God [Note: 2 Corinthians 1:4-6.].”]

3. A want of Christian feeling—

[The very essence of Christianity is love: and it is “by bearing one another’s burthens that we very principally fulfil the law of Christ [Note: Galatians 6:2.].” But how can we fulfil that law, if we do not “rejoice with them that rejoice, and weep with them that weep [Note: Romans 12:15.]?” Or how can we possess “true and undefiled religion, if we do not visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction [Note: James 1:27.],” and endeavour, according to our ability, to “lift up the hands that hangs down, and the feeble knees, and to make straight and smooth paths [Note: Hebrews 12:12-13.]” for “the feet of those who are ready to slip?” It was peculiarly characteristic of our blessed Lord, that “he would not break the bruised reed, or quench the smoking flax, till he should bring forth judgment unto victory [Note: Isaiah 42:3.]” and, if we do not resemble him in his compassionate regard for his afflicted saints, whatever we may profess, “we have not the mind that was in Christ Jesus [Note: Philippians 2:5.].”]

Behold, then,

1. The benefit of affliction—

[“Affliction, doubtless, is not joyous, but grievous:” but it qualifies us for services for which we should be otherwise unfit. Our blessed Lord was tempted in all things like unto us, sin only excepted, on purpose that he might be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, and be qualified (so to speak) “to succour them that are tempted [Note: Hebrews 2:17-18.]:” and from that very consideration we are encouraged to come to him for relief under our troubles [Note: Hebrews 4:15-16.]. Shall we not, then, be content to learn, in the school of adversity, the lessons which he designs us to convey to others? We doubt not but that Job, if he were on earth again, and knew how many millions of souls his example has instructed, would readily submit again to the same discipline, in order to communicate the same blessings to mankind. And we also may well descend with David into the horrible pit and miry clay of despondency itself, if only, with him, we may have “a new song put into our mouth, which many, beholding, may fear, and put their trust in the Lord [Note: Psalms 40:2-3.].”]

2. The excellency of the Gospel—

[Under the gospel dispensation we have a perfect antidote to all the afflictions even of Job himself. We have a far greater insight into the nature of God’s dispensations than they had under the darker ministration of the Law. The compassions of Christ do, in fact, dispel every cloud; and bring such light into the soul, that it may be said of all who view them aright, “Unto the godly there ariseth up light in the darkness [Note: Psalms 112:4.]:” and every believing soul may say, “When I walk in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me [Note: Micah 7:8.].” Yes, Brethren, “there is balm in Gilead;” there is balm for every wound. Only study the Gospel, and get your souls filled with a sense of redeeming love, and every storm you encounter shall only forward you to your desired haven, and every furnace you endure shall only purge you from your dross, and “fit you, as vessels of honour, for the use of your Divine Master [Note: 2 Timothy 2:21.].” Of those who come to heaven, as all, more or less, must be content to do, through much tribulation, not one ever did, or ever shall, complain, that his trials have been too great. Our passage to heaven may be laborious: but our rest shall amply compensate for all our labours.]

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Simeon, Charles. "Commentary on Job 12:5". Charles Simeon's Horae Homileticae. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/shh/job-12.html. 1832.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

i.e. The just man last mentioned, who is upon the brink of the pit or grave, ready to fall into mischief, so as never to rise again in this world, which is my case, and the occasion of their scorn and contempt.

As a lamp despised, i.e. like a lamp or torch, which whilst it shines clearly and in a dark night is very useful and comfortable; but when it draws towards an end, and is nigh extinct, and in the light, is neglected and despised, as that which is unnecessary, and troublesome, and offensive. So the same man, who, when his feet stand fast in a prosperous condition, is magnified and adored by all, when his feet slip or stumble, as the phrase is Psalms 94:18 Jeremiah 13:16, when he is in misery, is commonly forsaken and despised.

In the thought of him that is at ease, i.e. in the opinion of a man that lives in great ease and outward happiness, which generally makes persons to forget and despise those who are in affliction. But these words are a little otherwise rendered, and that agreeably to the order of the words in the Hebrew text, He (which is easily understood out of Job 12:4, the just and upright man) is as a torch despised in the opinion or thought (as this or the like words coming from the same Hebrew root are used, Psalms 146:4 Daniel 6:3 Jonah 1:6. Or, because of the splendour; for so this root and its derivatives elsewhere signify, as Song of Solomon 5:14 Jeremiah 5:28 Ezekiel 27:19. And either of these significations agree well with the place. Or, compared with the splendour or greater lustre and glory) of him that lives in tranquillity; he (i.e. the just man) is (or, because he is; for this may be the reason of the contempt) ready to slip with his foot, i.e. ready to perish.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 12:5". 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

5.A lamp despised — All interpreters acknowledge the obscurity of this verse to be exceedingly great. Schultens speaks of more than ten different opinions. “The words of this text are dark,” says the quaint Caryl, “and there are not a few who make the lamp the darkest word in it.” Rosenmuller and others render it: “A despised torch, in the thought of one happy, is he who is ready to slip with his feet.” Friends were meant for use. When no longer serviceable they are thrown away like burned out torches. Prosperity thrusts away the scaffolding by the help of which the edifice was built. Thus these friends basked in the light of Job’s success — but now they treat him as they would a useless torch. Such is the way of the world in every age — “to give to the tottering still another push.” — Dillmann. But most critics properly regard the le of (torch) as a prefix, and the pidh as meaning misfortune. For misfortune (there is) scorn in the thought of the secure; (scorn) ready for those who waver in their steps. In like mariner Ewald, Conant, Hirtzel, etc. In the last clause Dillmann and Furst follow Eichhorn in rendering nakhon, (ready,) a blow or destruction.

 

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "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 12:5. He that is ready to slip with his feet — The just man, last mentioned, who is ready to fall, or has already fallen into trouble; is as a lamp despised — That is, like a lamp or torch, which, while it shines clearly in a dark night, is very useful and comfortable; but when it is almost extinct, or when the light of the morning approaches, is neglected and despised, as that which is unnecessary, troublesome, and offensive. So the same man, who, while his feet stood fast in a prosperous condition, was magnified and honoured by all, and he shone as a lamp; when he appears to be ready to slip with his feet, and to fall into adversity and trouble, is looked upon as a lamp going out, or as the snuff of a candle, which we throw to the ground and tread upon: Despised in the thought of him that is at ease — That is, in the opinion of a man that lives in great ease and outward happiness; which generally make people forget and despise those who are in affliction. Heath interprets the verse thus: In calamity contempt is ready in the thought of the insolent, for those whose feet are tottering. The words being transposed in the English version, Chappelow thinks, if they be taken in the order in which they occur in the Hebrew, their meaning becomes more manifest. It is thus: A lamp, despised in the opinion of an indolent man, is prepared for the slips of the foot: that is, he who is a lamp or light to enlighten and instruct other people, though despised by those who are indolent, as if they wanted no instruction, is prepared for the several accidents of life, (the trials or troubles,) which are as natural and common to man as it is natural for him sometimes to stumble or slip with his foot. Here also Job’s words are general, without a particular application to himself, though doubtless he spoke them with reference to his own distressed circumstances.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 12:5". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-12.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

The lamp. Such is the just man, who under affliction is (Haydock) exposed to the ridicule of men who live at their ease. --- For. Hebrew, "to fall." (Calmet) Septuagint, "It was appointed for me to fall under others at the time fixed."

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-12.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

Job also resents his "comfortable" friends telling him how to handle adversity. "It seemed so unfair, Job observed, for men at ease (like the three advisers!) to have such an attitude toward his misfortune" (Bible Knowledge Comm. p. 733). "A certain ghoulish glee always attends the downfall of the high and mighty" (McKenna p. 110).

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/job-12.html. 1999-2014.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

He that is ready to slip with his feet is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

Lamp - a torch. "Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint" (Proverbs 25:19). 'Thoughts and 'feet' are in contrast: also rests 'securely' and 'falterings.' The wanderer, arrived at his night quarters, contemptuously throws aside the torch which had guided his uncertain steps through the darkness. As the torch is to the wanderer, so Job to his friends. Once they gladly used his aid in their need, now they in prosperity mock him in his need. Maurer translates instead of "lamp despised," 'To calamity [ piyd (Hebrew #6365)] (is due) contempt in the thought of him that is at ease:' and the first clause transposed, 'And it (contempt) is ready for them that slip with their feet.'

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 12:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-12.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(5) Is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.—This rendering conveys no sense. The meaning is either that the lamp or torch prepared for feet tottering and uncertain in the darkness is disregarded and rejected by those who are at ease, and need no such aid; in which case one does not see very clearly why Job compares himself to such a torch: or, more probably, there is contempt for calamity in the thoughts of him that is at ease, it is ready at hand for them who are tottering with their feet.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/job-12.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

He that is ready to slip with his feet is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.
ready
Deuteronomy 32:35; Psalms 17:5; 94:18; Jeremiah 13:16
a lamp
18:5; Proverbs 13:9; 20:20; Matthew 25:8
of him
6:5; 16:4; Psalms 123:3,4; Amos 6:1-6; Luke 12:19; 16:19,20
Reciprocal: Job 16:20 - scorn me;  Job 21:3 - mock on;  Psalm 73:2 - steps;  Galatians 4:14 - ye

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 12:5". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-12.html.