Elihu’s Speech, Part 4

Job 36-37

Highlights from this Passage

  • Elihu shows the power of God, his justice, and why he punishes.
  • Elihu shows that the unsearchable wisdom of God is manifest by his works, such as thunder, snow, whirlwinds, and rain.

†††††††

Elihu also continued, and said,

“Bear with me a little, and I will show you;
    for I still have something to say on God’s behalf.
I will get my knowledge from afar,
    and will ascribe righteousness to my Maker.
For truly my words are not false.
    One who is perfect in knowledge is with you.

“Behold, God is mighty, and doesn’t despise anyone.
    He is mighty in strength of understanding.
He doesn’t preserve the life of the wicked,
    but gives justice to the afflicted.
He doesn’t withdraw his eyes from the righteous,
    but with kings on the throne,
    he sets them forever, and they are exalted.
If they are bound in fetters,
    and are taken in the cords of afflictions,
then he shows them their work,
    and their transgressions, that they have behaved themselves proudly.
He also opens their ears to instruction,
    and commands that they return from iniquity.
If they listen and serve him,
    they will spend their days in prosperity,
    and their years in pleasures.
But if they don’t listen, they will perish by the sword;
    they will die without knowledge.

“But those who are godless in heart lay up anger.
    They don’t cry for help when he binds them.
They die in youth.
    Their life perishes among the unclean.
He delivers the afflicted by their affliction,
    and opens their ear in oppression.
Yes, he would have allured you out of distress,
    into a wide place, where there is no restriction.
    That which is set on your table would be full of fatness.

“But you are full of the judgment of the wicked.
    Judgment and justice take hold of you.
Don’t let riches entice you to wrath,
    neither let the great size of a bribe turn you aside.
Would your wealth sustain you in distress,
    or all the might of your strength?
Don’t desire the night,
    when people are cut off in their place.
Take heed, don’t regard iniquity;
    for you have chosen this rather than affliction.
Behold, God is exalted in his power.
    Who is a teacher like him?
Who has prescribed his way for him?
    Or who can say, ‘You have committed unrighteousness?’

“Remember that you magnify his work,
    about which men have sung.
All men have looked on it.
    Man sees it afar off.
Behold, God is great, and we don’t know him.
    The number of his years is unsearchable.
For he draws up the drops of water,
    which distill in rain from his vapor,
which the skies pour down
    and which drop on man abundantly.
Yes, can any understand the spreading of the clouds,
    and the thunderings of his pavilion?
Behold, he spreads his light around him.
    He covers the bottom of the sea.
For by these he judges the people.
    He gives food in abundance.
He covers his hands with the lightning,
    and commands it to strike the mark.
Its noise tells about him,
    and the livestock also concerning the storm that comes up.

“Yes, at this my heart trembles,
    and is moved out of its place.
Hear, oh, hear the noise of his voice,
    the sound that goes out of his mouth.
He sends it out under the whole sky,
    and his lightning to the ends of the earth.
After it a voice roars.
    He thunders with the voice of his majesty.
    He doesn’t hold back anything when his voice is heard.
God thunders marvelously with his voice.
    He does great things, which we can’t comprehend.
For he says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth,’
    likewise to the shower of rain,
    and to the showers of his mighty rain.
He seals up the hand of every man,
    that all men whom he has made may know it.
Then the animals take cover,
    and remain in their dens.
Out of its room comes the storm,
    and cold out of the north.
By the breath of God, ice is given,
    and the width of the waters is frozen.
Yes, he loads the thick cloud with moisture.
    He spreads abroad the cloud of his lightning.
It is turned around by his guidance,
    that they may do whatever he commands them
    on the surface of the habitable world,
Whether it is for correction, or for his land,
    or for loving kindness, that he causes it to come.

“Listen to this, Job.
    Stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God.
Do you know how God controls them,
    and causes the lightning of his cloud to shine?
Do you know the workings of the clouds,
    the wondrous works of him who is perfect in knowledge?
You whose clothing is warm,
    when the earth is still by reason of the south wind?
Can you, with him, spread out the sky,
    which is strong as a cast metal mirror?
Teach us what we will tell him,
    for we can’t make our case by reason of darkness.
Will it be told him that I would speak?
    Or should a man wish that he were swallowed up?

Now men don’t see the light which is bright in the skies,
    but the wind passes, and clears them.
Out of the north comes golden splendor.
    With God is awesome majesty.
We can’t reach the Almighty.
    He is exalted in power.
    In justice and great righteousness, he will not oppress.
Therefore men revere him.
    He doesn’t regard any who are wise of heart.”

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