He takes the poison of snakes into his mouth, the tongue of the snake is the cause of his death.
They gorge on evil, make a diet of that poison--a deadly diet--and it kills them.
He will suck the poison of cobras; The viper's tongue will slay him.
He shall suck the poison of asps: the viper's tongue shall slay him.
The godless person sucks the poison of snakes. A viper's fang kills him.
He sucks the poison* of serpents;* the fangs* of a viper* kill him.
20:16 He sucks the poison1387
tn The word is a homonym for the word for “head,” which has led to some confusion in the early versions.
sn To take the possessions of another person is hereby compared to sucking poison from a serpent – it will kill eventually.
of a viper1390
tn Some have thought this verse is a gloss on v. 14 and should be deleted. But the word for “viper” (אֶפְעֶה, ’ef’eh) is a rare word, occurring only here and in Isa 30:6 and 59:5. It is unlikely that a rarer word would be used in a gloss. But the point is similar to v. 14 – the wealth that was greedily sucked in by the wicked proves to be their undoing. Either this is totally irrelevant to Job’s case, a general discussion, or the man is raising questions about how Job got his wealth.