Chapter 41

1Behold his hope is in vain; shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him?   אהֵן־תּֽוֹחַלְתּ֥וֹ נִכְזָ֑בָה הֲגַ֖ם אֶל־מַרְאָ֣יו יֻטָֽל:
Behold his hope is in vain: Behold if his hope is in vain, for he will have no strength to wage war and to move from his place.  
shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him: if even at the sight of his face a man will be cast down from standing before him to look at him, because of the fear of him.  
2There is no one so fierce that he can stir him up, and who is he who can stand before Me?   בלֹֽא־אַ֖כְזָר כִּ֣י יְעוּרֶ֑נּוּ וּמִ֥י ה֜֗וּא לְפָנַ֥י יִתְיַצָּֽב:
There is no one so fierce that he can stir him up: There is no one so fierce, mighty, and strong who can arouse him from his sleep and stir him up from his place to raise him up.  
and who is he: who will stand up before Me, Who makes all these?  
3Who came to meet Me? I will pay [his reward]. Everything under the heavens is Mine.   גמִ֣י הִ֖קְדִּימַנִי וַֽאֲשַׁלֵּ֑ם תַּ֖חַת כָּל־הַשָּׁמַ֣יִם לִי־הֽוּא:
Who came to meet Me: Who is it who came to meet Me by accepting to worship Me and keep My commandments, and I will pay him his reward.  
Everything under the heavens is Mine: Everything that is under the heavens is Mine, and I have the power to pay him his reward, his recompense, and his remuneration.  
4I will not be silent concerning his sons, either for his acts of heroism or the arrangement of his supplication.   דלוֹ־ (כתיב לֹא) אַֽחֲרִ֥ישׁ בַּדָּ֑יו וּדְבַר־גְּ֜בוּר֗וֹת וְחִ֣ין עֶרְכּֽוֹ:
I will not be silent concerning his sons: I will not be silent concerning the sons of a righteous man who went before Me sincerely, and his sons will be paid the good reward of their father, and they will find good in his merit.  
either for his acts of heroism and the arrangement of his supplication: Either for his heroic deeds, that he strengthened himself to do what is good and upright, and the arrangement of the righteous man’s supplication [is that] I will pay his reward also to his sons after him.  
his sons: Heb. בדיו, his branches, and they are his sons, like (Ezek. 17: 6), “and brought forth branches (בדים) and sent out sprigs.”  
5Who exposed the face of his raiment? Who can come within his double bridle?   המִֽי־גִ֖לָּה פְּנֵ֣י לְבוּשׁ֑וֹ בְּכֶ֥פֶל רִ֜סְנ֗וֹ מִ֣י יָבֽוֹא:
Who exposed the face of his raiment: He returns to the previous topic to speak of the leviathan: who can expose the scales, which are…  
within his double bridle: Into the fold of his lips, when they are open, who is it who will enter there? [The expression] בְּכֶפֶל, double, denotes the lips, which are double, one above and one below, into which no creature may enter because of fear of him.  
6Who can open the doors of his face? Around his teeth is terror.   ודַּלְתֵ֣י פָ֖נָיו מִ֣י פִתֵּ֑חַ סְבִיב֖וֹת שִׁנָּ֣יו אֵימָֽה:
the doors of his face: They are the lips when he closes his mouth; who can open them?  
Around his teeth is terror: That because of his fright and his terror, no creature can approach his teeth.  
7There is pride in his strong shields, closed with a narrow seal.   זגַּֽאֲוָה אֲפִיקֵ֣י מָֽגִנִּ֑ים סָ֜ג֗וּר חוֹתָ֥ם צָֽר:
There is pride in his strong shields: He takes great pride in the strength of his shields; they are the scales that are on him, which protect him like a shield.  
closed: That is the seal of his coat of mail, which is narrow, closed, and strong, for each scale is attached to him and attached to the next one, so that no creature can strike him between the scales. This is what is stated: They are so close to each other, that all of them are brought together and are close to each other.  
8They are so close to each other that no air comes between them.   חאֶחָ֣ד בְּאֶחָ֣ד יִגַּ֑שׁוּ וְ֜ר֗וּחַ לֹֽא־יָב֥וֹא בֵֽינֵיהֶֽם:
9One adheres to the other; they stick together and cannot be separated.   טאִֽישׁ־בְּאָחִ֥יהוּ יְדֻבָּ֑קוּ יִ֜תְלַכְּד֗וּ וְלֹ֣א יִתְפָּרָֽדוּ:
they stick together and cannot be separated: He is still repeating his language, that they [the scales] are stuck together and each one is joined to the next one so that they should not separate from each other.  
10His sneezes flash forth light, and his eyes are like the rays of dawn.   יעֲטִישֹׁתָיו תָּ֣הֶל א֑וֹר וְ֜עֵינָ֗יו כְּעַפְעַפֵּי־שָֽׁחַר:
His sneezes flash forth light: With every sneeze that he sneezes, light flashes forth and shines.  
flash forth: as in (above 29:3), “when He lit (בהלו) His candle.”  
and his eyes are like the rays of dawn: His eyes shine and illuminate like the redness of the sun, like the time of morning when the sun becomes red.  
11From his mouth go firebrands; sparks of fire go forth like foam.   יאמִפִּיו לַפִּידִ֣ים יַֽהֲלֹ֑כוּ כִּיד֥וֹדֵי אֵ֜֗שׁ יִתְמַלָּֽטוּ:
From his mouth: From the flame that goes forth from his mouth.  
From his mouth go firebrands: Firebrands come forth from his mouth.  
sparks of fire: Like firebrands.  
go forth like foam: Heb. יתמלטו. Its interpretation is according to the context, escumicer in Old French [going forth like foam].  
12From his nostrils smoke goes forth, like a bubbling pot and an earthenware vessel.   יבמִנְּחִירָיו יֵצֵ֣א עָשָׁ֑ן כְּד֖וּד נָפ֣וּחַ וְאַגְמֹֽן:
From his nostrils smoke goes forth: like a bubbling pot on the fire, which raises smoke.  
and an earthenware vessel: ואגמן. Its interpretation is according to its context: an expression of an earthenware vessel, like a bubbling pot; according to the matter that is stated (Jer. 1: 13): “I see a bubbling pot.”  
13His breath kindles coals, and flame goes forth from his mouth.   יגנַפְשׁוֹ גֶּחָלִ֣ים תְּלַהֵ֑ט וְ֜לַ֗הַב מִפִּ֥יו יֵצֵֽא:
His breath kindles coals: Burning and blazing coals.  
and flame: And burning flames emerge from his mouth.  
14Strength lodges in his neck, and sadness rejoices before him.   ידבְּֽצַוָּארוֹ יָלִ֣ין עֹ֑ז וּ֜לְפָנָ֗יו תָּד֥וּץ דְּאָבָֽה:
Strength lodges in his neck: Mightiness.  
and sadness rejoices before him: For there is no sadness or grief before him, since he does not fear any creature. [The word] תָּדוּץ is an expression of joy and happiness.  
15The flakes of his flesh are joined together, poured out upon it, not to move.   טומַפְּלֵ֣י בְשָׂר֣וֹ דָבֵ֑קוּ יָצ֥וּק עָ֜לָ֗יו בַּל־יִמּֽוֹט:
The flakes of his flesh are joined together: Heb. דבקו. They adhere to each other closely, for the fish are composed of many pieces in its flesh, and they adhere to one another. In a large fish, which is cooked, the pieces are noticeable when they are lying one upon the other and one beside the other, and so is the sequence of the world: First he speaks of the scales of the leviathan and then of the flakes of his flesh and the strength of his heart.  
flakes: Heb. מפלי, an expression of folds of pieces. It is also possible to explain it as פְלָאֵי פלוּיֵי, [if it is split] in the language of the Talmud, an expression of the splits of his flakes.  
are joined together: the “beth” is vowelized by a small “kamatz” (tzeireh), like (Job 29:1O), “and their tongues stuck (דבקה) to their palates,” and many other cantillated by “ethrahta” or “sof pasuk.” [These are the pause accents.]  
poured out upon it: Heb. יצוק. Every flake poured out one upon the other, so that it should not move or separate one from the other. [The word] יָצוּק is an expression of being poured, and it is the passive participle, like יָרוּד, descended, from ירד; יָצוּק, poured, from יצק; יָדוּעַ, known, from ידע.  
16His heart is as strong as stone, and as strong as a lower millstone.   טזלִבּוֹ יָצ֣וּק כְּמוֹ־אָ֑בֶן וְ֜יָצ֗וּק כְּפֶ֣לַח תַּחְתִּֽית:
His heart is as strong as stone: His heart within him is as strong and basic as a permanent stone that is placed securely in the foundation of a building.  
and as strong as a lower millstone: This clause is repetitious, meaning that his heart is as basic and permanent as the millstone that is placed under the upper millstone, for the upper millstone revolves and rotates and grinds, whereas the lower one does not move from its place because it is fastened to its place, so that it should not move. That is called פֶּלַח רֶכֶב as it is stated (Jud. 9:53): “And a certain woman cast an upper millstone: פֶּלַח רֶכֶב, upon Abimelech’s head.” The lower one is called פֶלַח תַּחתִּית the lower piece.  
17From his fear the mighty are frightened; the breakers fail.   יזמִשֵּׂתוֹ יָג֣וּרוּ אֵלִ֑ים מִ֜שְּׁבָרִ֗ים יִתְחַטָּֽאוּ:
From his fear the mighty are frightened: From his fear, the mighty and strong, both fishes and other creatures, are frightened.  
the breakers fail: The waves of the sea, which are called breakers, fail before him, because he breaks them with his swimming, as he swims and floats in the waves of the sea. [The word] יִתְחַטָּאוּ is an expression of a lack, like (I Kings 1:21), “and I and my son Solomon will be lacking (חַטָּאִים).”  
18He who overtakes him with a sword-it will not remain, [neither will] a spear, a slingshot, nor a coat of mail.   יחמַשִּׂיגֵ֣הוּ חֶ֖רֶב בְּלִ֣י תָק֑וּם חֲנִ֖ית מַסָּ֣ע וְשִׁרְיָֽה:
He who overtakes him with a sword-it will not remain: A mighty man, who overtakes him to wage battle with a sword-his sword will not remain, because he will break it.  
[neither will] a spear, a slingshot, or a coat of mail: Likewise, none of these weapons that are in the hands of the overtaker will either remain or stand up before the leviathan. The word מַסָע may be said to be one type of weapon, like the sword, spear, and coat of mail(?). מַסָע may also be interpreted after the sample of (I Kings 6:7), “whole stones as they were transported (מַסָע) etc.,” and this is its interpretation: a transported spear, which is large and not so easily moved, because it is large and very strong; as the matter is stated concerning Goliath the Philistine (I Sam. 17: 7), “And the shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam, and the spear’s head was six hundred shekels, etc.”  
a coat of mail: Heb. ושריה, a coat of mail (שריון).  
19He regards iron as straw, and copper as rotten wood.   יטיַחְשֹׁ֣ב לְתֶ֣בֶן בַּרְזֶ֑ל לְעֵ֖ץ רִקָּב֣וֹן נְחוּשָֽׁה:
He regards iron as straw: Iron weapons are regarded by him as straw, and copper weapons are to him as rotten wood.  
20No arrow can put him to flight; slingstones turn into stubble for him.   כלֹֽא־יַבְרִיחֶ֥נּוּ בֶן־קָ֑שֶׁת לְ֜קַ֗שׁ נֶהְפְּכוּ־ל֥וֹ אַבְנֵי־קָֽלַע:
No arrow can put him to flight: He will not flee before an archer, and arrows and slingstones are as stubble to him.  
21Catapult [stones] are regarded as straw, and he plays at the noise of the harpoon.   כאכְּקַשׁ נֶחְשְׁב֣וּ תוֹתָ֑ח וְ֜יִשְׂחַ֗ק לְרַ֣עַשׁ כִּידֽוֹן:
Catapult [stones]: a weapon, to be interpreted according to the context.  
and he plays at the noise of the harpoon: At the noise of the tumult of warriors who carry harpoons, he plays and strolls, for he does not fear them.  
22Under him are rays of the sun; where he lies is gold upon the mire.   כבתַּחְתָּיו חַדּ֣וּדֵי חָ֑רֶשׂ יִרְפַּ֖ד חָר֣וּץ עֲלֵי־טִֽיט:
Under him are rays of the sun: in the place he rests, there are rays of the sun, because his fins, which are under him on his belly, illuminate and shine like the sun.  
rays: Heb. חדודי, like a sharp sword, which is sharpened, bright, and whitened. Because of this, he calls rays חַדוּדֵי.  
sun: Heb. חרשׂ, the sun, like (above 9:7), “He who spoke to the sun (לחרס) and it did not shine” ; (Jud. 14:18);“before the sun (החרסה) set. ”  
where he lies is gold upon the mire: This is a repeated clause. “Where he lies is gold,” refers to “rays of the sun” ; “upon the mire” refers to “under him,” in the place where he is on the sand; this is the mire where he lies. It shines like precious gold, as it is stated (Song 3: 10): “its couch of gold.” חָרוּץ is a type of gold, as it is stated (Prov. 8:19): “My fruit is better than gold (מחרוץ) , yea than fine gold.” Where he lies-an expression of a couch for lying down, like (Song 3:10), “its couch (רפידתו) of gold.”  
23He makes the deep seethe like a pot; he makes the sea like a seething mixture.   כגיַרְתִּ֣יחַ כַּסִּ֣יר מְצוּלָ֑ה יָ֜֗ם יָשִׂ֥ים כַּמֶּרְקָחָֽה:
He makes the deep seethe like a pot: Like a small bubbling pot, that quickly raises bubbles one after another, so does he cause the deep, which is large and deep, to seethe.  
he makes the sea like a seething mixture: Like a mixture of a concoction of spices, which is compounded and mixed, so does he make and mix the sea when he moves from his place.  
24He makes a path shine after him; he considers the deep to be hoary.   כדאַֽחֲרָיו יָאִ֣יר נָתִ֑יב יַחְשֹׁ֖ב תְּה֣וֹם לְשֵׂיבָֽה:
He makes a path shine after him: When he swims and floats in the sea, he makes the path of the deep shine, for at the time he swims, there is no water because of the speed of his swimming.  
he considers the deep to be hoary: To him, the deep is considered to be weak and feeble.  
to be hoary: The weakness of old age and hoariness.  
25On the dust there is none that rules over him, which is not made to be dismayed.   כהאֵֽין־עַל־עָפָ֥ר מָשְׁל֑וֹ הֶֽ֜עָשׂ֗וּ לִבְלִי־חָֽת:
On the dust there is none that rules over him: The “mem ” [is vowelized] with a “hataf kamatz,” and it means his rule, that no creature rules over him, and it is a noun denoting a ruler. Therefore, the “mem” is vowelized with a “hataf kamatz.”  
which is made: Heb. העשו, like העשוי [the passive participle]. However, I know of no similar case [in Scripture]. It means one that was made without fear or dismay, that is not afraid of the creatures, as it is stated concerning the horse (above 39:22): “He scorns fear and is not dismayed.”  
26He looks at all high things; he is king over all proud beasts."   כואֵֽת־כָּל־גָּבֹ֥הַּ יִרְאֶ֑ה ה֜֗וּא מֶ֣לֶךְ עַל־כָּל־בְּנֵי־שָֽׁחַץ:
He looks at all high things: All the high things in the world he sees beneath himself, for so is the custom of the world, that whoever stands above sees the one below more than the one below sees [him]. Also, the one below has no power or victory against the one above. Now this leviathan sees all mighty men; that is to say, they have no power against him.  
he is king over all proud beasts: This is a repeated expression. He looks over all proud beasts and he is king over all the proud beasts, over all haughty creatures that I created in My world, who have no rule or dominion against him. Now how did you dare to lift your head before Me, since I perform all these wonders?