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Such as have a place in the memory of Christ, shall not want a place in his kingdom.
“ Job, having finished his petitions, proposes strange questions, intermixed with some noble resolutions.
“ Verse 14. “ If a man die, shall he live again ? all the days of my appointed time will I wait till my change come.'
“ Some suppose that Job is here correcting and reprehending himself. Thus I indeed desired the Lord to appoint me a set time, when he would restore me; but why do I vex myself, and trouble the Lord with vain wishes ? Why should I expect what was never granted to any man? When I die, I shall not live again in this world ; yet I am willing to die when God pleases, and I believe I shall live again in the world to come, and therefore wait in faith till this change come.
“ To wait, is an act of patience, and of hope expecting to receive; it is also an act of humility, and tone of perseverance. Even all the days of my appointed time will I wait,” &c.
" As he who is willing to wait, as long as God sees meet, for deliverance; so he is ready cheerfully to obey God without delay or hesitation, like Abraham, who went with full intent to offer up his son Isaac.
“ Note, That it is our duty to wait God's time fully, and obey God immediately; for this purpose we need the patience of labourers to do the will of God, and also the patience of waiters to tarry for our answer and reward.
- Some understand the change for which
Job waited, to be a change of his outward condition. Others think it is till death come. Death brings a change to all. The saints have a great and blessed change from sin and all its evil consequences, to the enjoyment of felicity, without the least fear of its termina- ' tion. “As one of our worthies said, When I die, I shall change my place but not my company ; I shall have a new house, but my old society. This change is interpreted of the resurrection. One renders it, I will wait till my holy birth-day come. The resurrection will be a birth-day to the world.
“ Hence observe, that the assured hope of a resurrection to eternal life, will support the soul under, and enable patiently to endure the ills of life.
“ Verse 15. - Thou shalt call, and I will answer thee: thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands.'
“ Some think this is the very form of words in which Job intended to answer God which may be well expressed thus, Thou wilt put forth thy hand to the work of thy hand, and help me up when thou bidest me rise. God had cast Job into the mire, yet he believes that he will take him by the hand and lift him up, not only out of the ditch of affliction, but out of the grave of death.
“ When a true friend reaches out his hand to help, it is an expression of the feeling of his heart. Since God has a desire to the work of his hand, they should have a strong affection to and desire towards him.
“ It is the art of genuine faith to look through and beyond the darkest seasons of distress, and of death itself, and discover the light of life.
« Faith is a true prophet, thou wilt have a desire at a future period. He speaks of the time to come.
• Verse 16. For now thou numberest my steps ; dost thou not watch over my sin ?'
God knows all the motions of our hearts as well as the actions of our lives. The Septuagint translates, Thou numberest my media tations, or the workings of my heart, as the whole course of a man is called his way, so the several actings of that course are called his steps.
« The question · Dost thou not watch over my sin ?' seems an allusion to a severe creditor who gives no day, but presently exacts the pe- . nalty of his bond. Thus Job represents God as taking notice of all his sins with a view to punish by bringing him into judgment for them all.
“ We should, therefore, watch and pray lest we fall into temptation and transgress the law of God, since he observes our conduct so strictly; and for this purpose, we ought to take heed to what he has said in his word, and what he is daily doing in the course of his providence, and in the prospect of the judgment we should carefully watch our thoughts, words, and actions. Have we not cause to watch lest we transgress when God watches to chasten for our transgressions ?
• Verse 17. - My transgression is sealed up in a bag, and thou sewest up mine iniquity.
« Sealing is used to keep things secret that they may not be seen, and to keep them distinct that they may not be confused, and also for safety that they may be forthcoming.
“ By this Job seems to say, My transgressions are kept safe that it may be ready as matter of accusation against me. Some suppose it is a metaphor taken from Solicitors who have their papers sealed up and put into a bag. As impenitence seals our sins upon us, so it treasures up the wrath of God for our sins, Romans ii. 5. The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up, his sin is hid, Hos. xii. 3. ; it is reserved to a day of reckoning, it is hid not with a com vering of mercy, nor for protection, but for punishment.
“ A godly man is apt to think that all his afflictions are the fruit of his own sins. But though the sins of good men appear to be sealed and sewed up in a bag, yet they shall shortly see them, bag and all, cast into the sea, and sinking to the bottom, like lead, in the mighty waters of free grace and undeserved mercies.
" Job having shown that when a man dies, he shall return no more to his former state, which he proceeds to represent and prove by mountains, rocks, trees, &c. which are changed and consumed as if they had never been.
“ Verse 18. • And surely the mountain falling cometh to nought, and the rock is removed out of his place.”
“ In the first chapter of the prophecy of Nahum, we have a clear commentary upon this text. What can be said more, and nothing less deserves to be said, either of the instability of the strongest creatures, or of the omnipotency of the God of strength ?
« -Every mixt body hath the seed of corruption in it, and therefore must naturally corrupt, though God should not destroy it providentially.
“ Faith is said to remove mountains ; but it is only upon this account, because it engages the power of God who alone can do it.
" The power of God is invisible, and so is much of the weakness of man. The constitution of the creature makes the former visible, and the corruption of it makes the latter visible. Every thing that man sees reminds him of what he is, and what he must shortly be..
" Verse 19. « The waters wear the stones, thou washest away the things which grow out; of the dust of the earth, and thou destroyest. the hope of man.'
“ Waters are soft, yet they make impressions upon that which is hard. This similitude intimates that Job's affliction by long continuance would wear him out at last.
« God once brought an universal deluge, which washed away uot only all that grew out of the earth, but all that lived on the face of the earth. Our sin and the wrath of God turns our greatest worldly comforts into curses. · He destroys the hope of man.'