on Job 37 :13
He causeth it to come - The Vulgate translates the text thus: Sive in una tribu, sine in terra sua, sive in quocunque loco misericordiae suae eas jusserit inveniri. "Whether in one tribe, or whether in his own land, or in whatsoever place of his mercy he has commanded them to come." In the preceding verse it is said that God conducts the clouds according to the orders of his counsels, whithersoever he pleases: and here it is added that, when he designs to heap favors upon any land, he commands the clouds to go thither, and pour out on it their fertilizing showers. See Calmet. The Vulgate certainly gives a good sense, and our common version is also clear and intelligble; but there are doubts whether the Hebrew will bear this meaning. Here it is stated that God sends the rain either for correction, לשבט leshebet, which signifies rod, staff, tribe, and is here taken as the symbol of correction, he sends rain sometimes as a judgment, inundating certain lands, and sweeping away their produce by irresistible floods: or for his land, לארצו leartso, his own land, Palestine, the place of his favored people: or for mercy, לחסד lechesed; when a particular district has been devoured by locusts, or cursed with drought, God, in his mercy, sends fertilizing rains to such places to restore the ears which the caterpillars have eaten, and to make the desert blossom like the garden of the Lord. Some think that Job refers to the curse brought upon the old world by the waters of the deluge. Now although God has promised that there shall no more be a flood of waters to destroy the whole earth; yet we know he can, very consistently with his promise, inundate any particular district; or, by a superabundance of rain, render the toil of the husbandman in any place vain. Therefore, still his rain may come for judgment, for mercy, or for the especial help of his people or Church.
on Job 37 :13
He causeth it to come - That is, the rain, or the storm. It is entirely under the hand of God, like the lightning Job 36:30, and designed to accomplish his purposes of mercy and of justice.
Whether for correction - Margin, as in Hebrew "a rod." The rod is often used as an emblem of punishment. The idea is, that God, when he pleases, can send the rain upon the earth for the purpose of executing punishment. So he did on the old world Genesis 7:11-12, and so the overflowing flood is often now sent to sweep away the works of man, to lay waste his fields, and to cut off the wicked.
Or for his land - When necessary to render the land productive. He waters it by timely rains. It is called "his land," meaning that the earth belongs to the Lord, and that he cultivates it as his own; Psalm 24:1.
Or for mercy - In kindness and benignity to the world. But for this, the earth would become baked and parched, and all vegetation would expire. The idea is, that the rains are entirely under the control of God, and that he can make use of them to accomplish his various purposes - to execute his judgments, or to express his benignity and love. These various uses to which the lightning, the storm, and the rain could be made subservient under the divine direction. seem to have been one of the main ideas in the mind of Elihu, showing the supremacy and the majesty of God.
on Job 37 :13