Elihu Rebukes Job in Anger

32 Then these three men stopped answering Job, because he was (A)righteous in his own eyes. But the anger of Elihu the son of Barachel the (B)Buzite, of the family of Ram, burned against Job; his anger burned (C)because he justified himself [a](D)before God. And his anger burned against his three friends because they had found no answer, yet they had condemned Job. Now Elihu had waited [b]to speak to Job because they were years older than he. But when Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of the three men, his anger burned.

So Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite [c]spoke out and said,

“I am young in years and you are (E)old;
Therefore I was shy and afraid to tell you [d]what I think.
I [e]thought [f](F)age should speak,
And [g]increased years should teach wisdom.
But it is a spirit that is in mankind,
And the (G)breath of the Almighty gives them (H)understanding.
The [h]abundant in years may not be wise,
Nor may (I)elders understand justice.
10 So I [i]say, ‘Listen to me,
I too will tell [j]what I think.’

11 “Behold, I waited for your words,
I listened to your skillful speech,
While you [k]pondered what to say.
12 I also paid close attention to you;
But [l]indeed, there was no one who refuted Job,
Not one of you who answered his words.
13 So do not say,
(J)We have found wisdom:
God will [m]defeat him, not man.’
14 But he has not presented his words against me,
Nor will I reply to him with your [n]arguments.

15 “They are dismayed, they no longer answer;
Words have [o]failed them.
16 Should I wait, because they are not speaking,
Because they have [p]stopped and no longer answer?
17 I too will [q]give my share of answers;
I also will tell my opinion.
18 For I am full of words;
The spirit within me compels me.
19 Behold, my belly is like unvented wine;
Like new wineskins, it is about to burst.
20 Let me speak so that I may get relief;
Let me open my lips and answer.
21 Let me (K)be partial to no one,
Nor flatter any man.
22 For I do not know how to flatter,
Otherwise my Maker would quickly take me away.

Elihu Claims to Speak for God

33 “However, please (L)hear my speech, Job,
And listen to all my words.
Behold now, I open my mouth,
My tongue in my [r]mouth speaks.
My words are from the integrity of my heart,
And my lips speak (M)knowledge sincerely.
The (N)Spirit of God has made me,
And the (O)breath of [s]the Almighty gives me life.
(P)Refute me if you can;
Line up against me, take your stand.
Behold, I belong to God, like you;
I too have been [t]formed out of the (Q)clay.
Behold, (R)no fear of me should terrify you,
Nor should my pressure weigh heavily on you.

“You have in fact spoken [u]while I listened,
And I heard the sound of your words:
‘I am (S)pure, (T)without wrongdoing;
I am innocent and there (U)is no guilt in me.
10 Behold, He [v]invents [w]criticisms against me;
He (V)counts me as His enemy.
11 He (W)puts my feet in the stocks;
He watches all my paths.’
12 Behold, let me respond to you, (X)you are not right in this,
For God is greater than mankind.

13 “Why do you (Y)complain to Him
That He does not give an account of all His doings?
14 Indeed (Z)God speaks once,
Or twice, yet no one notices it.
15 In a (AA)dream, a vision of the night,
When deep sleep falls on people,
While they slumber in their beds,
16 Then (AB)He opens the ears of people,
And horrifies them with warnings,
17 So that He may turn a person away from bad conduct,
And [x]keep a man from pride;
18 He (AC)keeps his soul back from the pit,
And his life from perishing by the (AD)spear.

19 A person is also rebuked by (AE)pain in his bed,
And with constant complaint in his bones,
20 So that his life (AF)loathes bread,
And his soul, food [y]that he should crave.
21 His (AG)flesh wastes away from sight,
And his (AH)bones, which were not seen, stick out.
22 Then (AI)his soul comes near to the pit,
And his life to those who bring death.

23 “If there is an (AJ)interceding angel for him,
One out of a thousand,
To remind a person of what is [z]right for him,
24 And he is gracious to him, and says,
‘Free him from (AK)going down to the pit,
I have found a (AL)ransom’;
25 Let his flesh become fresher than in youth,
Let him return to the days of his youthful vigor;
26 Then he will (AM)pray to God, and He will accept him,
So that (AN)he may see His face with joy,
And He will restore His righteousness to that person.
27 He will sing to people and say,
‘I (AO)have sinned and perverted what is right,
And it is not (AP)proper for me.
28 He has redeemed my soul from going to the pit,
And my life will (AQ)see the light.’

29 “Behold, God does (AR)all these things for a man two or three times,
30 To (AS)bring back his soul from the pit,
So that he may be enlightened with the light of life.
31 Pay attention, Job, listen to me;
Keep silent, and let me speak.
32 Then if [aa]you have anything to say, answer me;
Speak, for I would take pleasure in justifying you.
33 If not, (AT)listen to me;
Keep silent, and I will teach you wisdom.”

Elihu Vindicates God’s Justice

34 Then Elihu continued and said,

“Hear my words, you wise men,
And listen to me, you who understand.
For (AU)the ear tests words
As the palate tastes food.
Let us choose for ourselves what is right;
Let us understand among ourselves what is good.
For Job has said, ‘(AV)I am righteous,
But (AW)God has taken away my right;
[ab]Should I lie about my right?
My [ac](AX)wound is incurable, though I am without wrongdoing.’
What man is like Job,
Who (AY)drinks up derision like water,
Who goes (AZ)in company with the workers of injustice,
And walks with wicked people?
For he has said, ‘(BA)It is of no use to a man
When he becomes friends with God.’

10 “Therefore, listen to me, you men of understanding.
Far be it from God to (BB)do evil,
And from the Almighty to do wrong.
11 For He repays a person for (BC)his work,
And lets things happen in correspondence to a man’s [ad]behavior.
12 (BD)God certainly will not act wickedly,
And the Almighty will not pervert justice.
13 Who (BE)gave Him authority over the earth?
And who (BF)has placed the whole world on Him?
14 If He were to [ae]determine to do so,
If He were to (BG)gather His [af]spirit and His breath to Himself,
15 [ag](BH)Humanity would perish together,
And mankind would (BI)return to dust.

16 “But if you have understanding, hear this;
Listen to the sound of my words.
17 Shall (BJ)one who hates justice rule?
And (BK)will you condemn the righteous mighty One,
18 Who says to a king, ‘You worthless one,’
To nobles, ‘You wicked one’;
19 Who shows no (BL)partiality to the prominent,
Nor regards the rich as above the poor,
Since they are all the (BM)work of His hands?
20 In a moment they die, and (BN)at midnight
People are shaken and pass away,
And (BO)the powerful are taken away without a hand.

21 “For (BP)His eyes are upon the ways of a person,
And He sees all his steps.
22 There is (BQ)no darkness or deep shadow
Where the workers of injustice can hide themselves.
23 For He does not (BR)need to consider a person further,
That he should go before God in judgment.
24 He breaks in pieces the (BS)mighty without investigation,
And sets others in their place.
25 Therefore He (BT)knows their deeds,
And (BU)He overthrows them in the night,
And they are crushed.
26 He (BV)strikes them like the wicked
[ah]In a public place,
27 Because they (BW)turned aside from following Him,
And (BX)had no regard for any of His ways,
28 So that they caused (BY)the cry of the poor to come to Him,
And that He would (BZ)hear the cry of the afflicted—
29 When He keeps quiet, who can condemn?
And when He hides His face, who then can look at Him,
That is, regarding both nation and a person?—
30 So that (CA)godless people would not rule,
Nor be snares for the people.

31 “For has anyone said to God,
‘I have endured punishment;
I will not offend anymore;
32 Teach me what I do not see;
If I have (CB)done wrong,
I will not do it again’?
33 Shall God (CC)repay on your terms, because you have rejected His?
For you must choose, and not I;
Therefore declare what you know.
34 Men of understanding will say to me,
And a wise man who hears me,
35 ‘Job (CD)speaks without knowledge,
And his words are without wisdom.
36 Oh that Job were tested [ai]to the limit,
Because [aj]he answers (CE)like sinners.
37 For he adds (CF)rebellion to his sin;
He (CG)claps his hands among us,
And multiplies his words against God.’”


  1. Job 32:2 Or more than
  2. Job 32:4 Lit for Job with words; or possibly while they were speaking with Job
  3. Job 32:6 Lit answered
  4. Job 32:6 Lit my knowledge
  5. Job 32:7 Lit said
  6. Job 32:7 Lit days
  7. Job 32:7 Lit many
  8. Job 32:9 Lit great (i.e., in years); or nobles
  9. Job 32:10 Or said
  10. Job 32:10 Lit my knowledge
  11. Job 32:11 Lit searched out words
  12. Job 32:12 Lit Behold
  13. Job 32:13 Lit scatter
  14. Job 32:14 Lit words
  15. Job 32:15 Lit moved away from
  16. Job 32:16 Lit stand
  17. Job 32:17 Lit answer my share
  18. Job 33:2 Lit palate
  19. Job 33:4 Heb Shaddai
  20. Job 33:6 Lit cut out of
  21. Job 33:8 Lit in my ears
  22. Job 33:10 Lit finds
  23. Job 33:10 Or complaints
  24. Job 33:17 Lit hide
  25. Job 33:20 Lit of craving
  26. Job 33:23 Lit his uprightness
  27. Job 33:32 Lit there are words
  28. Job 34:6 Or Although I am right I am accounted a liar.
  29. Job 34:6 Lit arrow
  30. Job 34:11 Lit way
  31. Job 34:14 Lit set His mind on Himself
  32. Job 34:14 Or Spirit
  33. Job 34:15 Lit All flesh
  34. Job 34:26 Lit In the place of the ones seeing
  35. Job 34:36 Or to the end
  36. Job 34:36 Lit of answers like

Bible Gateway Recommends