Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 27:19

"He lies down rich, but never again; He opens his eyes, and it is no longer.
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Death;   Oppression;   Rich, the;   Wicked (People);   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Death of the Wicked, the;  
Dictionaries:
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Job;   Providence;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Gather;   Job, Book of;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

The rich man shall lie down - In the grave. But he shall not be gathered - Neither have a respectable burial among men, nor be gathered with the righteous in the kingdom of God. It may be that Job alludes here to an opinion relative to the state of certain persons after death, prevalent in all nations in ancient times, viz., that those whose funeral rites had not been duly performed, wander about as ghosts, and find no rest.

He openeth his eyes - In the morning of the resurrection.

And he is not - He is utterly lost and undone for ever. This seems to be the plain sense of the passage; and so all the versions appear to have understood it; but Reiske and some others, by making יאסף yeaseph an Arabic word, signifying, not the idea of gathering, but care, anxiety, etc., have quite altered this sense of the passage; and Mr. Good, who copies them, translates thus: Let the rich man lie down, and care not. I see no manner of occasion to resort to this interpretation, which, in my judgment, gives a sense inferior to that given above, or to the following: The rich man shall lie down - go to his rest, fully persuaded that his property is in perfect safety; but he shall not be gathered, or he shall not gather - make any farther addition to his stores: he openeth his eyes in the morning, when he is not - marauders in the night have stripped him of all his property, as in the case of Job himself; a case quite probable, and not unfrequent in Arabia, when a hostile tribe makes a sudden incursion, and carries off an immense booty. But I prefer the first meaning, as it is obtained without crucifying the text. Coverdale translates: When the rich man dyeth, he carieth nothinge with him: he is gone in the twincklinge of an eye.

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-27.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

The rich man - That is, the rich man who is wicked.

Shall lie down - Shalt die - for so the connection demands.

But he shall not be gathered - In an honorable burial. The slain in battle are gathered together for burial; but he shall be unburied. The expressions “to be gathered,” “to be gathered to one‘s fathers,” frequently occur in the Scriptures, and seem to be used to denote a peaceful and happy death and an honorable burial. There was the idea of a happy union with departed friends; of being honorably placed by their side in the grave, and admitted to companionship with them again in the unseen world; compare Genesis 25:8; Genesis 35:29; Genesis 49:29, Genesis 49:33; Numbers 27:13; Deuteronomy 32:50; Judges 2:10; 2 Kings 22:20. Among the ancients, the opinion prevailed that the souls of those who were not buried in the customary manner, were not permitted to enter Hades, or the abodes of the dead, but were doomed to wander for an hundred years upon the banks of the river Styx. Thus, Homer (Iliad, 23:71, following) represents the spirit of Patroclus as appearing to Achilles, and praying him that he would commit his body with proper honors to the earth. So Palinurus is represented by Virgil (Aeneid, vi. 365) as saying, “Cast earth upon me, that I may have a calm repose in death.” The Hindoos, says Dr. Ward, believe that the souls of those who are unburied wander about and find no rest. It is possible that such views may have prevailed in the time of Job. The sentiment here is, that such an honored death would be denied the rich man of oppression and wickedness.

He openeth his eyes, and he is not - That is, in the twinkling of an eye he is no more. From the midst of his affluence he is suddenly cut off, and hurried away in a moment.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-27.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

The rich man shall lie down, but he shall not be gathered,.... That is, the wicked rich man; and the sense is, either he shall lie down upon his bed, but shall not be gathered to rest, shall get no sleep, the abundance of his riches, and the fear of losing them, or his life for them, will not suffer him to compose himself to sleep; or else it expresses his sudden loss of them, he "lies down" at night to take his rest, "and it is not gathered", his riches are not gathered or taken away from him, but remain with him:

he openeth his eyes: in the morning, when he awakes from sleep:

and it is not; by one providence or another he is stripped of all substance; or rather this is to be understood of his death, and of what befalls him at that time: death is often in Scripture signified by lying down, sleeping, and taking rest, as on a bed, see Job 14:10; rich men die as well as others; their riches cannot profit them, or be of any avail to them to ward off the stroke of death, and their death is miserable; he is "not gathered", or "shall not gather"F13ויאסף "nihil secum auferet", V. L. , he cannot gather up his riches, and carry it with him, Psalm 49:15, 1 Timothy 6:7; "he openeth his eyes" in another world, "and it is not", his riches are not with him; or, as the Vulgate Latin version, "he shall find nothing"; or rather the meaning is, he is "not gathered"; to his grave, as Jarchi and Ben Gersom; and so Mr. Broughton, "he is not taken up", that is, as he interprets it, to be honestly buried. He is not buried in the sepulchres of his ancestors, which is often in Scripture signified by a man being gathered to his people, or to his fathers; but here it is suggested, that, notwithstanding all his riches, he should have no burial, or, what is worse than that, when he dies he should not be gathered to the saints and people of God, or into God's garner, into heaven and happiness: "but he openeth his eyes"; in hell, as the rich man is said to do, and finds himself in inexpressible torment: "and he is not"; on earth, in his palace he built, nor among his numerous family, friends, and acquaintance, and in the possession of his earthly riches, but is in hell in the most miserable and distressed condition that can be conceived of. Some think this last clause respects the suddenness of his death, one "opens his eyes", and looks at him, "and he is not"; he is dead, in the twinkling of an eye, and is no more in the land of the living; but the former sense is best.

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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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Bibliographical Information
Gill, John. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-27.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

The rich man shall lie down, but n he shall not be gathered: he openeth his eyes, and he [is] not.

(n) He means that the wicked tyrants will not have a quiet death, nor be buried honourably.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/job-27.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

gathered — buried honorably (Genesis 25:8; 2 Kings 22:20). But Umbreit, agreeably to Job 27:18, which describes the short continuance of the sinner‘s prosperity, “He layeth himself rich in his bed, and nothing is robbed from him, he openeth his eyes, and nothing more is there.” If English Version be retained, the first clause probably means, rich though he be in dying, he shall not be honored with a funeral; the second, When he opens his eyes in the unseen world, it is only to see his destruction: the Septuagint reads for “not gathered,” He does not proceed, that is, goes to his bed no more. So Maurer.

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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 27:19". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-27.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

The rich man shall lie down, but he shall not be gathered: he openeth his eyes, and he is not.

Lie down — In death.

Not gathered — Instead of that honourable interment with his fathers, his carcase shall lie like dung upon the earth.

One openeth his eyes — That is, while a man can open his eyes, in the twinkling of an eye. He is as if he had never been, dead and gone, and his family and name extinct with him.

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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.
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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/job-27.html. 1765.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 27:19 The rich man shall lie down, but he shall not be gathered: he openeth his eyes, and he [is] not.

Ver. 19. The rich man shall lie down] That is, the wicked rich man, as James 5:1. Magna cognatio ut rei sic nominis, divitiis, et vitiis. He shall lie down, viz. in the streets, as being left homeless.

But he shall not be gathered] i.e. Taken into house or harbour by any man; but abhorred by all for his former cruelty.

He openeth his eyes, and he is not] He looketh about him on every side, but findeth no succour. There are that understand it of death: The rich man shall lie down, sc. in the dust of death; but shall not be gathered, that is, nec honorifice funerabitur; he shall not have the honour of a comely burial (Tigur.). Besides, he openeth his eyes, and he is not; upon his death bed he looks about for comfort (the mole, they say, never openeth her eyes till the pangs of death are upon her); but instead thereof shall see that threefold terrible spectacle, death, judgment, hell, and all to be passed through by his poor soul; hence, and no wonder.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 27:19". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-27.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Job 27:19. The rich man shall lie down, &c.— He may lie down rich, but it is the last time: a rendering which the latter part of the verse fully justifies. It describes the case of a tyrant, who lies down to rest in quiet; but those who conspire against him come upon him while he sleepeth: he openeth his eyes, but it is but for a moment; to see his own destruction. Heath; with whom Houbigant agrees. But Mr. Peters explains it thus: "The wicked rich man shall die, but shall not be gathered to the assembly of good and pious souls: he openeth his eyes in the other world, and finds himself quite lost and miserable;" for, that the word ףּאס asap, gathered was sometimes put for being gathered to their fathers, or their people, we have a plain example, Numbers 27:13 where, of Aaron it is only said, that he was gathered; and yet the same, no doubt, was meant by it, that he should be gathered to his people; i.e. to the assembly of good and pious souls.

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Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Job 27:19". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/job-27.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Shall lie down; either,

1. To sleep; as this word is used, Genesis 19:35 Deuteronomy 6:7, &c. Or,

2. In death, of which it is used, 2 Samuel 7:12.

He shall not be gathered, to wit, in burial, of which this word is used, 2 Kings 22:20 Jeremiah 8:2 25:33. Instead of that honourable interment and burial with his fathers which he expected, he shall be buried with the burial of an ass; his carcass shall lie like dung upon the earth.

He openeth his eyes so the sense is either,

1. He awaketh in the morning, promising to himself a happy day. Or,

2. He looks about him for help and relief in his extremity. But the words are and may be rendered thus, one openeth his eyes, i.e. whilst a man can open his eyes, in a moment, or in the twinkling of an eye.

He is not; he is as if he had never been, dead and gone, and his family and name extinct with him.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 27:19". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-27.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

Strophe c Suddenly and with violence he dies, the scorn of nature and of man, rejected and shot at by God himself, Job 27:19-23.

19.The rich’ lie down He lieth down rich. Though the wicked man be rich at his death, he shall not be gathered; an obscure phrase, the meaning of which our translators have given correctly when they have made it of signification similar to Genesis 25:8 — “Abraham was gathered to his people.” Since Abraham was buried in a land of strangers, and with Sarah only, the expression cannot signify mere burial with the dead, but rather pre-supposes continued conscious existence, and implies probably the communion of the dead. Compare Genesis 15:15; Genesis 25:8; Genesis 25:17; Genesis 35:29; Genesis 49:29-33; Numbers 20:24, etc. The rendering of Ewald, Hirtzel, etc., follows the Septuagint, “he doeth it no more,” that is, “he lies down for the last time,” but is hardly justified by the form of the verb, which is passive. The trivial reading of Umbreit, based upon a different pointing, “and nothing is robbed from him,” Hitzig strangely enough accepts.

He openeth his eyes — So sudden and unexpected is his death: it is but a glance, an opening of the eye, and he is no more. Or it may express the surprise of the guilty soul when it awakens to consciousness in the unseen world. Luke 16:23.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-27.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 27:19. The rich man shall lie down — In death; but he shall not be gathered — Namely, in burial, as this word יאסŠ, jeaseph, is often used. Instead of that honourable interment with his fathers, which he expected, his carcass shall lie like dung upon the earth. He openeth, or, one openeth his eyes, and he is not — That is, while a man can open his eyes, in a moment, or in the twinkling of an eye, he is as if he had never been; he is dead and gone, and his family and name are extinct with him.

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Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 27:19". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-27.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Nothing. His riches are all left behind! The men of riches have slept their sleep, and have found nothing in their hands. They awake as from a dream, (chap. xx. 8.; Haydock) and then they form a true estimate of things. (Menochius) --- God chiefly punishes the wicked in death, Psalm lxxv. (Worthington)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-27.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

One day the wicked man is rich, but the next day all this changes. Not only would he lose his possessions, but he himself would be gone as well.

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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/job-27.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

he = it: i.e. his wealth which is out at interest.

gathered = gathered in, or collected.

he = it: i.e. his wealth is gone. Not he, the rich man, for if he opens his eyes, he "is", not "is not".

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/job-27.html. 1909-1922.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(19) But he shall not be gathered.—Some ancient versions read, “but he shall do so no more;” but the “gathering” may refer to his wealth. “He openeth his eyes, and it (i.e., his wealth) is not;” or it may mean that as soon as he opens his eyes, hoping to enjoy his riches, he shall be no more, but be suddenly cut off. This sense appears to accord with the following verses.

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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/job-27.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

The rich man shall lie down, but he shall not be gathered: he openeth his eyes, and he is not.
shall lie
14:13-15; 21:23-26,30; 30:23
gathered
Genesis 49:10; Jeremiah 8:2; Matthew 3:12; 23:37
he openeth
20:7-9; Psalms 58:9; 73:19,20
he is not
8:22; 14:10,12; 24:24; *marg:
Reciprocal: Job 21:20 - see;  Psalm 49:17 - he shall;  Proverbs 10:25 - the whirlwind

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 27:19". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-27.html.