on Job 34 :33
According to thy mind? he will recompense it - Mr. Good renders the whole passage thus: -
"Then in the presence of thy tribes
According as thou art bruised shall he make it whole.
But it is thine to choose, and not mine;
So, what thou determinest, say."
This may at least be considered a paraphrase on the very obscure original. If thou wilt not thus come unto him, he will act according to justice, whether that be for or against thee. Choose what part thou wilt take, to humble thyself under the mighty hand of God, or still persist in thy supposed integrity. Speak, therefore; the matter concerns thee, not me; but let me know what thou art determined to do.
on Job 34 :33
Should it be according to thy mind? - Margin, as in Hebrew "from with thee" - המעמך hamē‛imekā. There has been much diversity of opinion in regard to the meaning of this verse. It is exceedingly obscure in the original, and has the appearance of being a proverbial expression. The general sense seems to be, that God will not be regulated in his dealings by what may be the views of man, or by what man might be disposed to choose or refuse. He will act according to his own views of what is right and proper to be done. The phrase, "should it be according to thy mind," means that it is not to be expected that God will consult the views and feelings of man rather than his own.
He will recompense it - He will visit with good or evil, prosperity or adversity, according as he shall judge to be right.
Whether thou refuse, or whether thou choose - Whatever may be your preferenccs or wishes. He will act according to his own views of right. The idea is, that God is absolute and independent, and does according to his own pleasure. He is a just Sovereign, dispensing his favors and appointing calamity, not according to the will of individual people, but holding the scales impartially, and doing what "he" esteems to be right.
And not I-- Rosenmuller, Drusius, DeWette, and Noyes, render this, "And not he," supposing that it refers to God, and means that the arrangements which are to affect people should be as "he" pleases, and not such as "man" would prefer. Umbreit explains it as meaning, "It is for you to determine in this matter, not for me. You are the person most interested. I am not particularly concerned. Do you, therefore, speak and determine the matter, if you know what is the truth." The Vulgate renders it, "Will God seek that from thee because it displeases thee? For thou hast begun to speak, not I: for if thou knowest anything better, speak." So Coverdale, "Wilt thou not give a reasonable answer? Art thou afraid of anything, seeing thou begannest first to speak, and not I?" The great difficulty of the whole verse may be seen by consulting Schultens, who gives no less than "seventeen" different interpretations, which have been proposed - his own being different from all others. He renders it," Lo, he will repay you in your own way; for thou art full of sores - "namquesubulceratus es:" which, indeed, thou hast chosen, and not I-- and what dost thou know? speak." I confess that I cannot understand the passage, nor do any of the interpretations proposed seem to be free from objections. I would submit the following, however, as a paraphrase made from the Hebrew, and differing somewhat from any interpretation which I have seen, as possibly expressing the true sense of the whole verse. "Shall it be from thee that God will send retribution on it (that is, on human conduct), because thou refusest or art reluctant, or because it is not in accordance with thy views? For thou must choose, and not I. Settle this matter, for it pertains particularly to you, and not to me, and what thou knowest, speak. If thou hast any views in regard to this, let them be expressed, for it is important to know on what principles God deals with men."
on Job 34 :33
34:33 Should it be - Doth God need thy advice how to govern the world, and whom, and when to reward or punish? Refuse - To submit as is expressed, ver.32. Therefore - If thou canst say any thing for thyself, I am ready to hear thy defence.