Job 32, 33, and 34

  1. Elihu, the youngest who came with Job’s three friends now offers his assessment at what just transpired. He is disappointed that Job’s friends were so willing to condemn Job, but had no answer to anything Job offered (C-32). Elihu summarizes Job’s argument (33:8-11), and then proceeds to tell Job that God communicates with man in various ways to turn him from the dark path he is walking on (33:12-30). Elihu turns his words toward those who engaged Job, giving his interpretation of Job’s remarks (34:1-9). There is no injustice in God, so why is Job finding fault with God for what Job can’t explain (34:10-30)? Why Job is suffering only the Lord can say, but let Job ask of the Lord to teach him in order for Job to be able to turn away from his wrong because, as Elihu is making clear, Job is not innocent (34:31-36)!
  2. Application. It is actually difficult for me to know whether or not Elihu is saying that Job’s affliction are because of his evil deed, or whether he is just stating the facts of the case that God will render to man what he deserves (34:10-30). In any case, it is certainly true that what a man sows he will also reap. It may be the case, furthermore, that the sins of man will not go before him to judgment (that is, evident to others), but will be exposed by the judgment (1 Timothy 5:24). As Elihu speaks it is clear that he has the same – albeit modified – opinion that his three older and wiser friends have. In Elihu’s case, he is not leveling condemnatory accusations at Job’s feet, but he does address the words that Job has expressed to be in rebellion to the Lord.