Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Job 33:15

"In a dream, a vision of the night, When sound sleep falls on men, While they slumber in their beds,
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Agency;   Conviction;   God;   God Continued...;   Philosophy;   Prophets;   Wicked (People);   The Topic Concordance - Hearing;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Beds;   Dreams;  
Dictionaries:
Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Vision;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Theophany;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Dream;   Prophet;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Job, the Book of;   Night;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Dreams;   Magic, Divination, and Sorcery;   Pit;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Dream (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Dreams;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Elihu;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Job, Book of;   Sleep, Deep;   Trance;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

I. In a Dream

In a Dream - when deep sleep falleth upon men - Many, by such means, have had the most salutary warnings; and to decry all such, because there are many vain dreams, would be nearly as much wisdom as to deny the Bible, because there are many foolish books, the authors of which supposed they were under a Divine influence while composing them.

II. In a Vision

In a Vision of the night - in slumberings upon the bed - Visions or images presented in the imagination during slumber, when men are betwixt sleeping and waking, or when, awake and in bed, they are wrapt up in deep contemplation, the darkness of the night having shut out all objects from their sight, so that the mind is not diverted by images of earthly things impressed on the senses. Many warnings in this way have come from God; and the impression they made, and the good effect they produced, were the proofs of their Divine origin. To deny this would be to call into doubt the testimony of the best, wisest, and holiest men in all ages of the Church. Of one of these visions we have a remarkable account in this book, Job 4:12-21. And this vision seems to have taken place in the night season, when Eliphaz awoke from a deep sleep. There is this difference between the accidents of the dream and the vision: the former takes place when deep sleep falleth upon men; the latter, in the night, in or after slumberings upon the bed.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/job-33.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

In a dream - This was one of the methods by which the will of God was made known in the early periods of the world; see the notes at Job 4:12-17. And for a fuller account of this method of communicating the divine will, see the introduction to Isaiah, Section 7 (2).

In a vision of the night - Notes, Job 4:13; compare the introduction to Isaiah, Section 7 (4).

When deep sleep falleth upon men - This may be designed to intimate more distinctly that it was from God. It was not the effect of disturbed and broken rest; not such fancies as come into the mind between sleeping and waking, but the visitations of the divine Spirit in the profoundest repose of the night. The word rendered “deep sleep” (תרדמה tardêmâh ) is one that denotes the most profound repose. It is not merely sleep, but it is sleep of the soundest kind - that kind when we do not usually dream; see the notes at Job 4:13. The Chaldee has here rendered it correctly, עמקתא שינתא - sleep that is deep. The Septuagint renders it, δεινὸς φόβος deinos phobos - dread horror. The Syriac renders this verse, “Not by the lips does he teach; by dreams and visions of the night,” etc.

In slumberings upon the bed - The word rendered “slumberings” (בתנומה bitenûmâh ) means a light sleep, as contradistinguished from very profound repose. Our word slumber conveys the exact idea. The meaning of the whole is, that God speaks to people when their senses are locked in repose - alike in the profound sleep when they do not ordinarily dream, and in the gentle and light slumbers when the sleep is easily broken. In what way, however, they were to distinguish such communications from ordinary dreams, we have no information. It is scarcely necessary to remark that what is here and elsewhere said in the Scriptures about dreams, is no warrant for putting any confidence in them now as if they were revelations from heaven.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Bibliographical Information
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/job-33.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

In a dream, in a vision of the night,.... That is, God speaks to men in this way, and which in those times was his most usual way; see Job 4:12; sometimes he spake to a prophet, a person in public office, and made known his mind and will in this manner to him, that he might deliver it to others, Numbers 12:6; and sometimes directly and immediately to persons themselves, as he did to Abimelech and Laban, Genesis 20:3;

when deep sleep lieth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed; the former denotes a fast, heavy, and sound sleep, when the senses are all locked up, and there is not the least attention to any outward object; the latter a slight sleep, when a man is between sleeping and waking; and now at such a time, when he was laid on his bed in the night season, it was usual for God to come to him in a visionary way, and impress things on his mind; when it was called off front worldly and earthly thoughts and cares, and was calm and serene, and so fit to receive what intimations and instructions might be given this way; see Psalm 4:4. Job had his dreams and night visions, though he seems not to have had any benefit by them, or to have understood them, but was scared and terrified with them, Job 7:14; to which Elihu may have some respect.

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 33:15". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/job-33.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

In a dream, in a g vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed;

(g) God, he says, speaks commonly, either by visions to teach us the cause of his judgments, of else by affliction or by his messenger.
Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/job-33.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

slumberings — light is opposed to “deep sleep.” Elihu has in view Eliphaz (Job 4:13), and also Job himself (Job 7:14). “Dreams” in sleep, and “visions” of actual apparitions, were among the ways whereby God then spake to man (Genesis 20:3).

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 33:15". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/job-33.html. 1871-8.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Job 33:15 In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed;

Ver. 15. In a dream, in a vision of the night] At sundry times and in various manners. God delivered his mind to men of old by dreams in the night, by visions in the day time, imprinting upon their minds what by them he would have understood, or uttered to others. This he did, especially before the law written, whereof therefore here is made no mention. See Numbers 12:6. Indeed with Moses, by a specialty of his favour, he spake mouth to mouth; even apparently (as a man doth to his friend), and not in dark speeches; the similitude of the Lord did he bebold, sed non absque aliquo Maiestatis eius involucro, but not without some overshadowing of his Majesty, which none can see and live, Exodus 33:20, he must needs be oppressed and swallowed up of it, as the sight of the eye is dazzled with the sun, or a crystal glass broken with the fire.

When deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed] When men, plunged in sleep, are neither in the number of the living nor the dead. Then many times the reasonable soul cometh into the shop of phantasy, and there doth strange works, which are vented in our dreams. And sometimes God, by an angel, or otherwise, causeth men to dream, and thereby admonisheth them with weighty matters; as he did Abimelech, Genesis 20:3-7; Jacob, Genesis 28:12-15; Joseph, Genesis 40:5-11; the other Joseph, Matthew 1:20-24; the wise men, Matthew 2:12; Pilate’s wife, Matthew 27:19, which, though some think it came from the devil, to hinder man’s redemption, yet others think it came from God, for the clearing of Christ’s innocence, and, as Theophylaet holdeth, for the salvation of this woman’s soul. Eπεχω. Of the several sorts of dreams, natural, divine, and diabolical. {See Trapp on "Genesis 20:3"}

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Job 33:15". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/job-33.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

In a dream: this he mentions, as the usual way of God’s revealing his mind and will to men in those days, before God’s word was committed to writing, as Genesis 20:6 41:1,28.

In a vision of the night: this is added by way of explication and limitation, to show that he speaks not of every dream, but of those Divine dreams in which God was pleased to vouchsafe some vision or representation of his will to the mind of a man.

When deep sleep falleth upon men; when men’s senses are bound up, and their minds free from all distracting cares and business of the world, and wholly at leisure to receive Divine impressions.

In slumberings: this is added, because in this case the man is like one that slumbereth, or between sleeping and waking, or uncertain in which state he is, as Paul could not tell whether he was in the body, or out of the body, when he was in his ecstasy, 2 Corinthians 12:1,2.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Job 33:15". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/job-33.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

15.In a vision of the night — See note only, Job 33:13-15. The vision supposed to have been seen by Colonel Gardiner, and ending in his conversion, is a case in point; also, the cases of Schubert, Newton, etc. The taking up and adopting of the dream of Eliphaz not only compliments “the old gentleman,” as Scott calls him, but shrewdly reproves Job for not having given it more attention.

 

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/job-33.html. 1874-1909.

Joseph Benson's Commentary of the Old and New Testaments

Job 33:15. In a dream, in a vision, or, in a vision of the night — This he mentions as one usual way of God’s revealing his mind and will to men in those days, before God’s word was committed to writing; (Genesis 20:6; Genesis 41:1; Genesis 41:28;) when deep sleep falleth upon men — When men’s outward senses are bound up, and their minds are free from all distracting cares and business of the world, and wholly at leisure to receive divine impressions; in slumberings upon the bed — This is added because, in this case, man is like one that slumbereth, or is between sleeping and waking, or uncertain in which state he is, as Paul, when he was in his ecstasy, could not tell whether he was in the body or out of the body.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Job 33:15". Joseph Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rbc/job-33.html. 1857.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Beds. It seems prophetic dreams were not then uncommon.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/job-33.html. 1859.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed;

Slumberings - light, as opposed to 'deep sleep.' Elihu has in view Eliphaz (Job 4:13), and also Job himself (Job 7:14). "Dreams" in sleep, and "visions" of actual apparitions, were among the ways whereby God then spake to man (Genesis 20:3).

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 33:15". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/job-33.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed;
a dream
4:13; Genesis 20:3; 31:24; Numbers 12:6; Jeremiah 23:28; Daniel 4:5; Hebrews 1:1
deep
Genesis 15:12; Daniel 8:18
Reciprocal: Genesis 2:21 - GeneralGenesis 28:12 - he dreamed;  Genesis 40:5 - GeneralGenesis 40:8 - Do not;  Genesis 41:1 - that Pharaoh;  Genesis 41:32 - doubled;  Genesis 46:2 - in the visions;  Numbers 22:12 - Thou shalt;  Judges 7:9 - the same;  1 Samuel 3:8 - the third;  1 Kings 3:5 - in a dream;  Daniel 2:1 - Nebuchadnezzar;  Daniel 2:19 - in;  Daniel 10:9 - was I;  Matthew 1:20 - in;  Matthew 2:12 - warned;  Matthew 2:13 - for;  1 Thessalonians 5:7 - they that sleep

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Job 33:15". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/job-33.html.