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Job 24:18

    Job 24:18 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    He is swift as the waters; their portion is cursed in the earth: he beholdeth not the way of the vineyards.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    He is swift as the waters; their portion is cursed in the earth: he beholds not the way of the vineyards.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    Swiftly they pass away upon the face of the waters; Their portion is cursed in the earth: They turn not into the way of the vineyards.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    They go quickly on the face of the waters; their heritage is cursed in the earth; the steps of the crusher of grapes are not turned to their vine-garden.

    Webster's Revision

    Swiftly they pass away upon the face of the waters; Their portion is cursed in the earth: They turn not into the way of the vineyards.

    World English Bible

    "They are foam on the surface of the waters. Their portion is cursed in the earth. They don't turn into the way of the vineyards.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    He is swift upon the face of the waters; their portion is cursed in the earth: he turneth not by the way of the vineyards.

    Clarke's Commentary on Job 24:18

    He is swift as the waters - Literally, Light is he on the face of the waters: and cursed shall be their portion on the earth, which Mr. Good translates: -

    Miserable is this man on the waters:

    Deeply miserable the lot of those on dry land.

    He beholdeth not the way of the vineyards - These no longer flourish or bring forth fruit. The labor of the vintage fails.

    Barnes' Notes on Job 24:18

    He is swift as the waters - Noyes renders this, "They are as swift as the skiff upon the waters." Dr. Good, "Miserable is this man upon the waters." Wemyss, "Such should be as foam upon the waters." Le Clerc says that there is scarcely any passage of the Scriptures more obscure than this, and the variety of rendering adopted will show at once the perplexity of expositors. Rosenmuller supposes that the particle of comparison (כ k) is to be understood, and that the meaning is, "he is as a light thing upon the waters;" and this probably expresses the true sense. It is a comparison of the thief with a light boat, or any other light thing that moves gently on the face of the water, and that glides along without noise. So gently and noiselessly does the thief glide along in the dark. He is rapid in his motion, but he is still. It is not uncommon to describe one who is about to commit crime in the night as moving noiselessly along, and as taking every precaution that the utmost silence should be preserved. So Macbeth, when about to commit murder, soliloquizes:

    Now o'er the one half world

    Nature seems dead -

    And withered murder,

    Alarm'd by his sentinel, the wolf,

    Who's howl'd his watch, thus with his stealthy pace,

    With Tarquin's ravishing strides, towards his design

    Moves like a ghost.

    Thou sure and firm-set earth,

    Hear not my steps, which way they walk, for fear

    The very stones prate of my whereabout.

    I do not know, however, that this comparison of a thief, with a light object on the waters, is to be found any where else, but it is one of great beauty. The word rendered "swift" (קל qal) may denote either that which is swift, or that which is light. In Isaiah 30:16, it is applied to a fleet horse. Here it may be rendered, "He is as a light thing upon the face of the waters."

    Their portion is cursed in the earth - That is, their manner of life, their way of obtaining a livelihood, is deserving of execration. The result of humble toil and honest labor may be said to be blessed; but not the property which they acquire. Rosenmuller and Noyes, however, suppose that the word "portion" here refers to their habitation, and that the idea is, they have their dwelling in wild and uncultivated places; they live in places that are cursed by sterility and barrenness. The Hebrew will bear either construction. The word lot, as it is commonly understood by us, may perhaps embrace both ideas. "Theirs is a cursed lot on earth."

    He beholdeth not the way of the vineyards - That is, they do not spend their lives in cultivating them, nor do they derive a subsistence from them. They live by plunder, and their abodes are in wild retreats, far away from quiet and civilised society. The object seems to be to describe marauders, who make a sudden descent at night on the possessions of others, and who have their dwellings far away from fields that are covered with the fruits of cultivation.

    Wesley's Notes on Job 24:18

    24:18 Swift - That is, he quickly passeth away with all his glory, as the waters which never stay in one place, but are always hasting away. Portion - His habitation and estate which he left behind him. He - He shall never more see or enjoy his vineyards, or other pleasant places and things, which seem to be comprehended under this particular.
    Book: Job