“How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth?”
King James Version (KJV)
4:19 How, &c. - The sense is, what strange presumption then is it for a foolish and mortal man, to make himself more just than God. In them - Who though they have immortal spirits, yet those spirits dwell in mortal bodies, which are great clogs, and incumbrances, and snares to them. These are called houses, (because they are the receptacles of the soul, and the places of its settled abode) and houses of clay, because they were made of clay, or earth, and to note their great frailty and mutability; whereas the angels are free spirits, unconfined to such carcasses, and dwell in celestial, and glorious, and everlasting mansions. Whose - Whose very foundation, no less than the rest of the building, is in the dust; had their original from it, and must return to it. We stand but upon the dust: some have an higher heap of dust to stand upon than others. But still it is the earth that stays us up, and will shortly swallow us up. Before - Sooner than a moth is crushed, which is easily done by a gentle touch of the finger. Or, at the face of a moth. No creature is so contemptible, but one time or other it may have the body of man in its power.