Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Job 6:19

King James Version (KJV)
Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

The troops of Tema looked - The caravans coming from Tema are represented as arriving at those places where it was well known torrents did descend from the mountains, and they were full of expectation that here they could not only slake their thirst, but fill their girbas or water-skins; but when they arrive, they find the waters totally dissipated and lost. In vain did the caravans of Sheba wait for them; they did not reappear: and they were confounded, because they had hoped to find here refreshment and rest.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

The troops of Tema looked - That is, looked for the streams of water. On the situation of Tema, see Notes, Job 2:11. This was the country of Eliphaz, and the image would be well understood by him. The figure is one of exquisite beauty. It means that the caravans from Tema, in journeying through the desert, looked for those streams. They came with an expectation of finding the means of allaying their thirst. When they came there they were disappointed, for the waters had disappeared. Reiske, however, renders this, “Their tracks (the branchings of the flood) tend toward Tema;” - a translation which the Hebrew will bear, but the usual version is more correct, and is more elegant.

The companies of Sheba waited for them - The “Sheba” here referred to was probably in the southern part of Arabia; see the notes at Isaiah 45:14. The idea is, that the caravans from that part of Arabia came and looked for a supply of water, and were disappointed.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
In his prosperity Job formed great expectations from his friends, but now was disappointed. This he compares to the failing of brooks in summer. Those who rest their expectations on the creature, will find it fail when it should help them; whereas those who make God their confidence, have help in the time of need, Heb 4:16. Those who make gold their hope, sooner or later will be ashamed of it, and of their confidence in it. It is our wisdom to cease from man. Let us put all our confidence in the Rock of ages, not in broken reeds; in the Fountain of life, not in broken cisterns. The application is very close; "for now ye are nothing." It were well for us, if we had always such convictions of the vanity of the creature, as we have had, or shall have, on a sick-bed, a death-bed, or in trouble of conscience. Job upbraids his friends with their hard usage. Though in want, he desired no more from them than a good look and a good word. It often happens that, even when we expect little from man, we have less; but from God, even when we expect much, we have more. Though Job differed from them, yet he was ready to yield as soon as it was made to appear that he was in error. Though Job had been in fault, yet they ought not to have given him such hard usage. His righteousness he holds fast, and will not let it go. He felt that there had not been such iniquity in him as they supposed. But it is best to commit our characters to Him who keeps our souls; in the great day every upright believer shall have praise of God.