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Testing Job’s Claims

34 Then Elihu answered:

“Hear my words, you wise men;
    give ear to me, you men of learning.
For the ear tests words
    as the mouth tastes food.
Let us choose for ourselves what is right;
    Let us learn together what is good.

“For Job says, ‘I am righteous,
    but God has deprived me of justice.
Concerning my right, should I lie?
    My wound is incurable, although I am without transgression.’
What man is like Job,
    who drinks mockery like water,
who keeps company with evildoers,
    and walks with wicked men?
For he says, ‘It does not profit a man
    when he makes his delight with God.’

10 “Therefore, listen to me, you men of understanding:
Wickedness is far from God, injustice from Shaddai
11 For He repays a person for what he has done,
    and brings on the person what he deserves.

12 “Truly God does not act wickedly,
    and Shaddai does not pervert justice.
13 Who appointed Him over the earth?
    Who put Him over the whole world?

14 “If He were to set His heart on it,
    and gather to Himself His Ruach and breath,
15 all flesh would perish together
    and mankind would return to dust.[a]
16 “Now if you have understanding, hear this;
    give ear to the sound of my words.
17 Can someone who hates justice govern?
    Will you condemn the mighty, righteous One?
18 Who says to a king, ‘Worthless man’
    and to nobles, ‘Wicked men’!
19 Who shows no partiality before princes,
    and does not favor the rich over the poor,
    for they are all the work of His hands.
20 They die in a moment, at midnight,
    people are shaken and they pass away.
    The mighty are removed without a hand.

21 “For His eyes are on the ways of man;
    He sees all his steps.
22 There is no gloom and no deep darkness,
    where evildoers can hide themselves.
23 For He does not consider a man further
    that he should go before God in judgment.
24 He shatters the mighty without inquiry,
    and sets others in their place.
25 Thus He recognizes their deeds,
    He overturns them in the night and they are crushed.
26 He strikes them for their wickedness
    in a place where people can see,
27 because they turned from following Him,
    and have not understood any of His ways.
28 They caused the cry of the poor to come before Him,
    so that He hears the cry of the afflicted.

29 “But if He is quiet, who can condemn Him?
    If He hides His face, who can see Him?
Yet He is over a nation and an individual alike,
30 so that godless men should not rule,
    nor lay snares for people.
31 “Suppose someone says to God, ‘I have born chastisement,
    but I will not act wickedly any more.
32 Teach me what I cannot see.
    If I have done evil, I will not do it again.’
33 Should He requite it on your terms,
    because you reject it?
But you must choose and not I;
    now declare what you know.
34 “Men of understanding declare,
    wise men who hear me say to me,
35 ‘Job speaks without knowledge,
    and his words lack understanding.’
36 Oh, that Job might be tested to the end,
    for answering like wicked men.
37 For he adds rebellion to his sin;
    in our midst he claps his hands
    and multiplies his words against God.”


  1. Job 34:15 cf. Acts 17:25, 28.