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28 so that they caused[a] the cry of the poor
to come before him,
so that he hears[b] the cry of the needy.
29 But if God[c] is quiet, who can condemn[d] him?
If he hides his face, then who can see him?
Yet[e] he is over the individual and the nation alike,[f]
30 so that the godless man should not rule,
and not lay snares for the people.[g]

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  1. Job 34:28 tn The verse begins with the infinitive construct of בּוֹא (boʾ, “go”), showing the result of their impious actions.
  2. Job 34:28 tn The verb here is an imperfect; the clause is circumstantial to the preceding clause, showing either the result, or the concomitant action.
  3. Job 34:29 tn Heb “he”; the referent (God) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  4. Job 34:29 tn The verb in this position is somewhat difficult, although it does make good sense in the sentence—it is just not what the parallelism would suggest. So several emendations have been put forward, for which see the commentaries.
  5. Job 34:29 tn The line simply reads “and over a nation and over a man together.” But it must be the qualification for the points being made in the previous lines, namely, that even if God hides himself so no one can see, yet he is still watching over them all (see H. H. Rowley, Job [NCBC], 222).
  6. Job 34:29 tn The word translated “alike” (Heb “together”) has bothered some interpreters. In the reading taken here it is acceptable. But others have emended it to gain a verb, such as “he visits” (Beer), “he watches over” (Duhm), “he is compassionate” (Kissane), etc. But it is sufficient to say “he is over.”
  7. Job 34:30 tn This last verse is difficult because it is unbalanced and cryptic. Some have joined the third line of v. 29 with this entire verse to make a couplet. But the same result is achieved by simply regarding this verse as the purpose of v. 29. But there still are some words that must be added. In the first colon, “[he is over the nations]…preventing from ruling.” And in the second colon, “laying” has to be supplied before “snares.”