Yahweh hears the cry of the just (Ps 34:15-34:18)

Phe     

“The eyes of Yahweh are toward the righteous.

His ears are open to their cry.

Ain     

The face of Yahweh is against evildoers.

He would cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.

Cade   

When the righteous cry for help,

Yahweh hears.

He rescues them from all their troubles.

Qoph  

Yahweh is near to the brokenhearted.

He saves the crushed in spirit.”

Once again, Yahweh has eyes, ears, and a face to hear and see. There was this continual cry to have Yahweh listen to them. Much like “the eyes of Texas are on you” so too the eyes of Yahweh on the righteous ones. The ears of Yahweh are open to hear the righteous cry. The face of Yahweh was against the evildoers, whose memory would be wiped away. When the righteous cry, Yahweh hears them with his ears. He rescues them from all their troubles. He is near to the broken hearted. He saves those with a crushed spirit.

Yahweh answers David (Ps 34:4-34:6)

Dalet  

“I sought Yahweh.

He answered me.

He delivered me from all my fears.

He                  

Look to him!

Be radiant!

Thus your faces shall never be ashamed.

Zain   

This poor soul cried.

He was heard by Yahweh.

He was saved from every trouble.”

David sought the help of Yahweh. Yahweh responded and delivered him from all his fears. He was radiant so that he would not be ashamed. David wanted others to do the same. He as a poor soul cried out to Yahweh. Then Yahweh heard him and saved him from all his troubles.

Eliphaz explains who the happy man is (Job 5:17-5:27)

“How happy is the one whom God reproves.

Therefore, do not despise the discipline of the Almighty Shaddai!

He wounds,

But he binds up.

He strikes,

But his hands heal.

He will deliver you from six troubles.

In seven no harm shall touch you.

In famine he will redeem you from death,

In war he will redeem you from the power of the sword.

You shall be hidden from the scourge of the tongue.

You shall not fear destruction when it comes.

At destruction and famine you shall laugh.

You shall not fear the wild animals of the earth.

You shall be in league with the stones of the field.

The wild animals shall be at peace with you.

You shall know that your tent is safe,

You shall inspect your fold and miss nothing.

You shall know that your descendants will be many.

Your offspring will be like the grass of the earth.

You shall come to your grave in ripe old age,

As a shock of grain comes up to the threshing floor in its season.

See!

We have searched this out.

It is true.

Hear!

Know it for yourself.”

Eliphaz explained that Job should be happy that he is being disciplined by God, the almighty Shaddai, the name of the God of Abraham in Genesis, chapter 17. God wounds and strikes, but he also heals. He also delivers people from troubles 6 or 7 times. Once again we have the lucky unlucky number of 7. He will protect people during a famine or war so that they will laugh at them. He will protect the disciplined ones from wild animals. He will make sure that their tents and flocks are in good shape. Their offspring will be like the grass on the earth. They will live to a ripe old age. Eliphaz has searched this out. He knows that it is true and he wants Job to know this himself.

Job would prefer the eternal rest in death (Job 3:11-3:19)

“Why did I not die at birth?

Why did I not come forth from the womb and then expire?

Why were there knees to receive me?

Why were there breasts for me to suck?

Now I would be lying down and quiet.

I would be asleep.

Then I would be at rest.

With kings and counselors of the earth.

They rebuilt ruins for themselves.

I would be asleep with princes who had gold,

Who filled their houses with silver.

Why was I not buried like a stillborn child?

Why was I not like an infant that never sees the light?

There the wicked cease from troubling.

There the weary are at rest.

There the prisoners are at ease together.

They do not hear the voice of the taskmaster.

The small and the great are there.

The slave is free from his master.”

Job would prefer to be dead. Why didn’t he die at childbirth? Why didn’t he die as he left the womb? Why were there people to receive him? Why were there breasts to suck on? Otherwise, he could have eternal rest and quiet just like the kings, counselors, and princes with their monuments, gold, and silver. Why wasn’t he stillborn? He could be with the wicked who have no troubles, the prisoners who have no cares, and the slaves who have no masters. Death appears as a time of rest and no more troubles. Both the great and the small die. All have that eternal rest. This is often the allure of those who are thinking about suicide. However, I believe that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

Job curses the night he was conceived (Job 3:2-3:10)

“Job said.

‘Let the day perish in which I was born.

Let the night perish that said,

‘A man-child is conceived.’

Let that day be darkness!

May God above not seek it

Or light shine upon it!

Let gloom and deep darkness claim it.

Let clouds settle upon it.

Let the blackness of the day terrify it.

That night

Let thick darkness seize it!

Let it not rejoice among the days of the year.

Let it not come into the number of the months.

Yes,

Let that night be barren.

Let no joyful cry be heard in it.

Let those curse it who curse the day,

Those who are skilled to rouse up Leviathan.

Let the stars of its dawn be dark.

Let it hope for light,

but have none.

May it not see the eyelids of the morning.

Because it did not shut the doors of my mother’s womb,

It did not hide trouble from my eyes.’”

Job at first blamed the day he was born, but he quickly turned to the day he was conceived. He wanted to blot out the day that he the man child was conceived. Basically, he was wishing darkness and not light on that day. This is the classic idea that light is good, dark is bad thinking that permeates most thinking. He even wanted black clouds to terrify the day and night. He wanted the days of the year and the number in the month not to be a time for rejoicing. It is interesting to me that I am working today on this concept on the day of my own birthday. I am happy to be alive. He wished that the night of his conception would have been barren. There should be no joy about his life. Rather it should be like a curse that would arouse the sea monster, the Leviathan. The17th century English philosopher Thomas Hobbes later used this biblical concept to explain society as chaotic, where we try to devour each other. Thus we needed a strong central government to maintain the common good, a Leviathan government. Clearly these ancients understood the terrible sea monster, the Leviathan, which will appear later in this work. Job wanted the stars in the sky to go dark. Why did they not shut the doors of his mother’s womb? What an image! It almost sounds like he may have preferred to have been aborted. He did not want his eyes to see the morning light or any other troubles.

King Antiochus VII invades Dor (1 Macc 15:10-15:14)

“In the one hundred seventy-fourth year, Antiochus set out and invaded the land of his ancestors. All the troops rallied to him, so that there were only a few with Trypho. Antiochus pursued him. He came in his flight to Dor, which is by the sea. He knew that troubles had converged upon him, since his troops had deserted him. So Antiochus encamped against Dor, and with him were one hundred twenty thousand warriors and eight thousand cavalry. He surrounded the town since the ships had joined battle from the sea. He pressed the town hard from land and sea. He permitted no one to leave or enter it.”

In 138 BCE, or the 167th year of the Greek Empire, King Antiochus VII invaded the land of his ancestors. That sounds strange to invade your own country. He was trying to take back the throne from King Trypho. King Trypho fled to Dor, a sea port south of Carmel, miles north of Caesarea. Most of the troops of King Trypho had abandoned him. King Antiochus VII followed him to Dor with 120,000 warriors and 8,000 cavalry. Once again, these numbers seem high. He then surrounded the city since he had ships in the port so that no one could leave or enter the city.