Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 18:14

"He is torn from the security of his tent, And they march him before the king of terrors.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Death;   Wicked (People);   The Topic Concordance - Bearing Fruit;   Knowledge;   Perishing;   Wickedness;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Death of the Wicked, the;   Trust;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Bildad;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Hades;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Death;   Greatness of God;   Hypocrisy;   Easton Bible Dictionary - King;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Death;   Job, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Devil;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Bring;   Confidence;   The Jewish Encyclopedia - Demonology;   King;   Sheol;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

His confidence shall be rooted out - His dwelling-place, how well soever fortified, shah now he deemed utterly insecure.

And it shall bring him to the king of terrors - Or, as Mr. Good translates, "And dissolution shall invade him as a monarch." He shall be completely and finally overpowered. The phrase king of terrors has been generally thought to mean death; but it is not used in any such way in the text. For בלהות למלך lemelech ballahoth, to the king of destructions, one of De Rossi's MSS. has כמלך kemelech, "as a king;" and one, instead of בלהות ballahoth, with ו vau holem, to indicate the plural, terrors or destructions, has בלהות ballahuth, with ו vau shurek, which is singular, and signifies terror, destruction. So the Vulgate seems to have read, as it translates, Et calcet super eum, quasi rex, interitis; "And shall tread upon him as a king or destroyer. Or as a king who is determined utterly to destroy him." On this verse the bishop of Killala, Dr. Stock, says, "I am sorry to part with a beautiful phrase in our common version, the king of terrors, as descriptive of death; but there is no authority for it in the Hebrew text." It may however be stated that death has been denominated by similar epithets both among the Greeks and Romans.

So Virgil, Aen. vi., ver. 100. -

Quando hic inferni janua regi Dicitur.

"The gates of the king of hell are reported to be here."

And Ovid, Metam. lib. v., ver. 356, 359.

Inde tremit tellus: et rex pavit ipse silentum.

Hanc metuens cladem, tenebrosa sede tyrannus Exierat.

"Earth's inmost bowels quake, and nature groans;

His terrors reach the direful King of Hell.

Fearing this destruction, the tyrant left hisgloomy court."

And in Sophocles, (Oedip. Colon., ver. 1628, edit. Johnson).

Εννυχιων αναξ,�Αιδωνευ .

"O Pluto, king of shades."

That is, the invisible demon, who dwells in darkness impenetrable. Old Coverdale translates: Very fearfulnesse shall bringe him to the kynge.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-18.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle - Security shall forsake his dwelling, and he shall be subject to constant alarms. There shall be nothing there in which he can confide, and all that he relied on as sources of safety shall have fled.

And it shall bring him - That is, he shall be brought.

To the king of terrors - There has been much variety in the explanation of this verse. Dr. Noyes renders it, “Terror pursues him like a king.” Dr. Good, “Dissolution shall invade him like a monarch.” Dr. Stock says. “I am sorry to part with a beautiful phrase in our common version, the king of terrors, as descriptive of death, but there is no authority for it in the Hebrew text.” Wemyss renders it, “Terror shall seize him as a king.” So Schultens translates it, “Gradientur in eum, instar regis, terrores.” Rosenmuller renders it as it is in our version. The Vulgate: Et calcet super eum, quasi rex, interitus - “destruction shall tread upon him as a king.” The Septuagint “and distress shall lay hold on him with the authority of a king” - αἰτίᾳ βασιλικῃ satia basilikē The Chaldee renders it, “shall be brought to the king of terrors” - רגושתא למלך is not evident, therefore, that we are to give up the beautiful phrase, “king of terrors.”

The fair construction of the Hebrew, as it seems to me, is that which is conveyed in our common version - meaning, that the wicked man would be conducted, not merely to death, but to that kind of death where a fearful king would preside - a monarch infusing terrors into his soul. There is something singularly beautiful and appropriate in the phrase, “the king of terrors.” Death is a fearful monarch. All dread him. He presides in regions of chilliness and gloom. All fear to enter those dark regions where he dwells and reigns, and an involuntary shudder seizes the soul on approaching the confines of his kingdom. Yet all must be brought there; and though man dreads the interview with that fearful king, there is no release. The monarch reigns from age to age - reigns over all. There is but one way in which he will cease to appear as a terrific king. - It is by confidence in Him who came to destroy death; that great Redeemer who has taken away his “sting,” and who can enable man to look with calmness and peace even on the chilly regions where he reigns. The idea here is not precisely that of the Roman and Grecian mythologists, of a terrific king, like Rhadamanthus, presiding over the regions of the dead but it is of death personified - of death represented as a king fitted to inspire awe and terror.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-18.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Job 18:14

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the king of terrors.

The confidence of the wicked

The world understands by the word “wicked” one who offends against the law of conscience,--one who breaks the second table of the law, the only table which it thinks important. Scripture means by it one who violates his relationship to God,--who transgresses the first table of the law. The term “wicked” has much more reference to the state of their hearts towards God than their state before man. Bildad shows the effects of wickedness.

I. On the wicked man himself (Job 18:7-8). The great point in these verses is the certainty with which he brings misery upon himself. His very sins are made his chastisement.

II. On his family (Job 18:6). “The light shall be darkened in his tabernacle.” In some Eastern countries a lamp is suspended from the ceiling of each room, and kept burning all the night, so that the house is full of light. And so, in the dwellings of the godly, there is light--the light of God’s presence. But in the dwellings of the ungodly there is no such light, and no blessing. And with the absence of this there is also, very often, the absence of family union and love. Very different is the Christian’s confidence. It rests upon a faithful and unchanging Saviour. Its roots strike deep into the everlasting hills. (George Wagner.)

It shall bring him to the king of terrors.

Death is terrible

Under a threefold consideration.

1. If we consider the antecedents, the forerunners or harbingers of death, which are pains, sicknesses, and diseases.

2. If we consider the nature of death. What is death? Death is a disunion; all disunions are troublesome, and some are terrible. Those are most terrible which rend that from us which is nearest to us. Death is also a privation, and a total privation. Death is such a privation, as from which there can be no return to nature.

3. In regard of the consequents. Rottenness and corruption consume the dead, and darkness covers them in the grave. We may ranks a threefold gradation of the terribleness of death.

A believer moves on these principles.

1. That death cannot break the bond of the covenant between God and us.

2. Death may break the union between the soul and the body, but it cannot break the union between the soul and Christ. This outlives death.

3. The apostle asserts that the sting of death is out.

4. Scripture calls death a sleep or rest.

5. Death puts a period to our earthly sorrows, and we have no reason to be sorry for that.

6. It is called a “going to God,” in whom we shall have an eternal enjoyment.

7. It is a dying to live, as well as a dying from life. (Joseph Caryl.)
.

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Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Job 18:14". The Biblical Illustrator. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/job-18.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle,.... That which his confidence was placed in, his wealth and riches, his family, particularly his children, in all which he placed his confidence of future prosperity and happiness; these should be all taken away from him, and his house cleared of them all; or his good, sound, and healthful constitution, on account of which he promised himself long life, this he should be deprived of, and it should be taken out of the tabernacle of his body; or his hope and confidence of eternal happiness in another world, this should perish, and be as the giving up of the ghost: or the words may be rendered, "he shall be rooted out of his tabernacle which was his confidence"F2Michaelis. ; that is, his soul shall be taken out of his body by death, in which it dwelt as in a tabernacle, and where he hoped to have had a long continuance; death is a rooting of a man out of it, and even out of the world, see Psalm 52:5;

and it shall bring him to the king of terrors; either famine, by which his strength is weakened, or destruction that is at his side, or the firstborn of death, or his vain confidence: or this may be the sense, "thou (O God) wilt bring him", or "cause him to go to the king of terrors"F3De Dieu. ; to death; all men are brought unto it, but not all unto it as a king of terrors; as good men, such as Simeon, the Apostle Paul, and others, but wicked men. Death is a king: it reigns, it has a large empire, even the whole world; its subjects are numerous, all, high and low, rich and poor, great and small; and the duration of its reign is long, it reigned from Adam to Moses, from Moses to the coming of Christ, and from thence to this day, and will to the end of the world, and it reigns with an irresistible power: and this king is a king of terrors to wicked men; it is, as AristotleF4Ethic. l. 3. c. 9. calls it, the most terrible of terribles; it is terrible to nature, being a dissolution of it; and it must be terrible to mere natural men, who have nothing to support them under it, and no views beyond the grave to comfort them, and cause them to go cheerful through it; but, on the other hand, have not only the bitterness of death to endure, but have terrible apprehensions of a future judgment that comes after it. Some render it, "the king of darkness"F5למלך בלהות "ad regem caliginum", Cocceius. , extreme darkness, blackness of darkness, utter darkness, which wicked men at death are brought unto. Jarchi interprets it of the king of demons, the devil; and to be brought to him is to be brought to hell and eternal damnation: so some render it, "terrors shall bring him to his king"F6Schmidt. , the devil; or rather "terrors shall come upon him like a king"F7"Instar regis", Schultens; "quasi rex", V. L. , in a very grand, powerful, and formidable manner.

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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.
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Gill, John. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-18.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the i king of terrors.

(i) That is, with great fear.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/job-18.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

confidence — all that the father trusted in for domestic happiness, children, fortune, etc., referring to Job‘s losses.

rooted out — suddenly torn away, it shall bring - that is, he shall be brought; or, as Umbreit better has, “Thou (God) shalt bring him slowly.” The Hebrew expresses, “to stride slowly and solemnly.” The godless has a fearful death for long before his eyes, and is at last taken by it. Alluding to Job‘s case. The King of terrors, not like the heathen Pluto, the tabled ruler of the dead, but Death, with all its terrors to the ungodly, personified.

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-18.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the king of terrors.

Confidence — All the matter of his confidence, his riches, and children.

Terrors — To death, which even Aristotle called, The most terrible of all terribles. And this it will do, either because it will expose him to his enemies, who will kill him; or because the sense of his disappointments, and losses, and dangers, will break his heart.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/job-18.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 18:14 His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the king of terrors.

Ver. 14. And his confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle] Whatsoever he trusteth in about his house shall be pulled up by the roots, or grubbed up. Thus it befell Doeg, Psalms 52:7. And this disappointment, this broken confidence of his, shall bring him, or make him go, to the king of terrors; i.e. to death, that most terrible of terribles, as the philosopher calleth it (Aristot.). Or the devil (as R. Solomon interpreteth it), that black prince, Ephesians 6:12, to whom wicked men are brought by death, which to them is not only nature’s slaughterman, but God’s curse, and hell’s purveyor. Hence Revelation 6:8, death haleth hell at the heels of it.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 18:14". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-18.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Job 18:14. And it shall bring him to the king of terrors Horrors shall attack him, like a king. Heath.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Job 18:14". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/job-18.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

His confidence, i.e. all the matter of his confidence, his riches, children, &c.

Out of his tabernacle, i.e. out of his habitation.

It shall bring him, to wit, the loss of his confidence.

To the king of terrors; either,

1. Into extreme fears and horrors of mind. Or,

2. To death, which even Aristotle called the most terrible of all terribles. And this it will do, either because it will expose him to his enemies, who will kill him; or because the sense of his disappointments, and losses, and dangers will oppress his spirits, and break his heart.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 18:14". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-18.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

14.His confidence’ his tabernacle He shall be torn from his tent, his confidence; that on which he relies. As with us, his tent (house) may have been his castle; or, perhaps, the poet means his home, his children, which are the right arm of a man. Hitzig understands by TENT his body, (2 Peter 1:13; Isaiah 38:12,) “his strong, sound body, which promised a long life.” But the use of the same word in the next verse, as a habitation for others, is fatal to this view.

It shall bring — It, the dark, unseen, unnamed power, shall make him to march. “Slowly march,” says Umbreit, with a view to the idea that the godless man has a fearful death before his eyes for a length of time — an evident allusion to the case of Job. The Assyrian monuments give striking pictures of captives bound in chains, marching in procession to death. “The Psalm of Life” has a like figure of “funeral marches to the grave.”

King of terrors — Death, whose first-born has done his work. This personification of death rests, probably, upon an instinctive feeling that, for the wicked, death is no mere privation of consciousness, but the entrance into a state of unknown horror. (Canon Cook.) It has been conjectured by some that in this term “king of terrors.” (comp. Hebrews 2:14,) there is an allusion to Satan, who has “the power of death.” In Jewish theology, Satan is called the prince over thohu, or chaos.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-18.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 18:14. His confidence — That is, all the matter of his confidence, his riches, children, &c.; shall be rooted out of his tabernacle — That is, out of his habitation. And it — Namely, the loss of his confidence; shall bring him to the king of terrors — Either, 1st, Into extreme fears and horrors of mind; or, 2d, To death, which even Aristotle called the most terrible of all terribles. And this it will do, either because it will expose him to his enemies, who will kill him; or, because the sense of his disappointments, and losses, and dangers, will break his heart.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 18:14". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-18.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Confidence. Septuagint, "health." --- Let. Protestants, "and it shall bring him to the king of terrors;" (Haydock) or, "thou (O God) shalt," &c. Septuagint, "let him be in the greatest (Calmet) want, on account of a royal accusation," (Haydock) of high treason. (Calmet)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-18.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

"He is torn from the security of his tent": In this verse death is pictured as the king of terrors, before whom Job will be dragged as a captive. Yet Bildad has not been listening to Job, for Job has been looking at death as a release from his suffering. In addition, the Christian should not fear death (Hebrews 2:14-15; Philippians 1:21,23).

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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/job-18.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

king of terrors. Euphemy, for death.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/job-18.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the king of terrors.

Confidence - all that the father trusted in for domestic happiness-children, fortune, etc.; referring to Job's losses. He and his hopes together are cast out from his home (Job 8:14-15. "Whose hope shall be cut off and whose trust shall be a spider's web; be shall lean upon his house but it shall not stand").

Rooted out - suddenly torn away.

It shall bring - i:e., he shall be brought: or, as Umbreit, better, has, 'Thou (God) shall bring him slowly.' The Hebrew expresses, 'to stride slowly and solemnly.' The godless has a fearful death long before his eyes, and is gradually at last taken away by it: alluding to Job's case, The King of Terrors, not like the pagan Pluto, the fabled ruler of the dead, but Death, with all its terrors to the ungodly, personified. In the English version "it" means his doom shall bring him with slow and lingering pace' [ tsaa`ad (Hebrew #6805)]. I prefer, with Maurer, to translate, 'He shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, out of his confidence' - i:e., from his tabernacle, in which he always placed his confidence [ mibTachow (Hebrew #4009)].

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-18.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(14) His confidence shall be rooted out.—Rather, he shall be rooted out of his tent which he trusted was his own.

The king of terrors.—Perhaps the most remarkable personification of unseen forces to be found in the Bible.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/job-18.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

His confidence shall be rooted out of his tabernacle, and it shall bring him to the king of terrors.
confidence
8:14; 11:20; Psalms 112:10; Proverbs 10:28; Matthew 7:26,27
the king
24:17; 41:34; Psalms 55:4; Proverbs 14:32; 1 Corinthians 15:55,56; Hebrews 2:15
Reciprocal: Job 8:13 - the hypocrite's;  Job 8:15 - it shall not stand;  Job 17:16 - the bars of the pit;  Job 18:21 - such are;  Psalm 52:5 - pluck;  Proverbs 14:11 - house;  Proverbs 21:12 - wisely

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 18:14". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-18.html.