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25 I chose[a] the way for them[b]
and sat as their chief;[c]
I lived like a king among his troops;
I was like one who comforts mourners.[d]

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  1. Job 29:25 tn All of these imperfects describe what Job used to do, and so they all fit the category of customary imperfect.
  2. Job 29:25 tn Heb “their way.”
  3. Job 29:25 tn The text simply has “and I sat [as their] head.” The adverbial accusative explains his role, especially under the image of being seated. He directed the deliberations as a king directs an army.
  4. Job 29:25 tc Most commentators think this last phrase is odd here, and so they either delete it altogether, or emend it to fit the idea of the verse. Ewald, however, thought it appropriate as a transition to the next section, reminding his friends that unlike him, they were miserable comforters. Herz made the few changes in the text to get the reading “where I led them, they were willing to go” (ZAW 20 [1900]: 163). The two key words in the MT are אֲבֵלִים יְנַחֵם (ʾavelim yenakhem, “he [one who] comforts mourners”). Following Herz, E. Dhorme (Job, 422) has these changed to אוֹבִילֵם יִנַּחוּ (ʾovilem yinnakhu). R. Gordis has “like one leading a camel train” (Job, 324). But Kissane also retains the line as a summary of the chapter, noting its presence in the versions.

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