Search the Bible
* powered by Bible Study Tools

Job 21:17

    Job 21:17 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    How oft is the candle of the wicked put out! and how oft cometh their destruction upon them! God distributeth sorrows in his anger.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    How oft is the candle of the wicked put out! and how oft comes their destruction on them! God distributes sorrows in his anger.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    How oft is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out? That their calamity cometh upon them? That God distributeth sorrows in his anger?

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    How frequently is the light of the evil-doers put out, or does trouble come on them? how frequently does his wrath take them with cords?

    Webster's Revision

    How oft is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out? That their calamity cometh upon them? That God distributeth sorrows in his anger?

    World English Bible

    "How often is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out, that their calamity comes on them, that God distributes sorrows in his anger?

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    How oft is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out? that their calamity cometh upon them? that God distributeth sorrows in his anger?

    Definitions for Job 21:17

    Oft - Often; frequently.

    Clarke's Commentary on Job 21:17

    How oft is the candle of the wicked put out? - The candle or lamp is often used, both as the emblem of prosperity and of posterity. Oftentimes the rejoicing of the wicked is short; and, not unfrequently, his seed is cut off from the earth. The root is dried up, and the branch is withered.

    God distributeth sorrows in his anger - He must be incensed against those who refuse to know, serve, and pray unto him. In his anger, therefore, he portions out to each his due share of misery, vexation, and wo.

    Barnes' Notes on Job 21:17

    How oft is the candle of the wicked put out? - Margin, "lamp." A light, or a lamp, was an image of prosperity. There is, probably, an allusion here to what had been maintained by Bildad, Job 18:5-6, that the light of the wicked would be extinguished, and their dwellings made dark; see the notes at those verses. Job replies to this by asking how often it occurred. He inquires whether it was a frequent thing. By this, he implies that it was not universal; that it was a less frequent occurrence than they supposed. The meaning is, "How often does it, in fact, happen that the light of the wicked is extinguished, and that God distributes sorrows among them in his anger? Much less frequently than you suppose, for he bestows upon many of them tokens of abundant prosperity." In this manner, by an appeal to "fact" and "observation," Job aims to convince them that their position was wrong, and that it was not true that the wicked were invariably overwhelmed with calamity, as they had maintained.

    God distributeth sorrows - The word "God" here, is understood, but there can be no doubt that it is correct. Job means to ask, how often it was true in fact that God "apportioned" the sorrows which he sent on men in accordance with their character. How often, in fact, did he treat the wicked as they deserved, and overwhelm them with calamity. It was not true that he did it, by any means, as often as they maintained, or so as to make it a certain rule in judging of character.

    Job 21:17-18

    Wesley's Notes on Job 21:17

    21:17 Often - I grant that this happens often though not constantly, as you affirm. Lamp - Their glory and outward happiness.
    Book: Job