|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
33:8-13 Elihu charges Job with reflecting upon the justice and goodness of God. When we hear any thing said to God's dishonour, we ought to bear our testimony against it. Job had represented God as severe in marking what he did amiss. Elihu urges that he had spoken wrong, and that he ought to humble himself before God, and by repentance to unsay it. God is not accountable to us. It is unreasonable for weak, sinful creatures, to strive with a God of infinite wisdom, power, and goodness. He acts with perfect justice, wisdom, and goodness, where we cannot perceive it.
Verses 8-12. - His exordium over, Elihu proceeds to point out what he blames in Job's discourses, and at present notices two departures from truth and right only. Job, he says, asserts his absolute innocence (ver. 9); he also maintains that God deals with him harshly, as an enemy (vers. 10, 11). Neither assertion is justifiable. Verse 8. - Surely thou hast spoken in mine hearing, and I have heard the voice of thy words, saying. Elihu does not quote exactly what Job had said. He probably intended to be perfectly fair and just, but in reality he greatly overstates the truth. Job had never said the words he ascribes to him in ver. 9; at best they are an inference, or deduction, from what he had said. And he had said a great deal on the other side, which Elihu overlooks (see the comment on ver. 9).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Surely thou hast spoken in mine hearing,.... After the above preface, Elihu proceeds to the point in hand, and enters a charge against Job; which he took up, not upon suspicion and surmisings, nor upon report, nor upon accusations received from others, but what he had heard with his own ears, unless he was greatly mistaken indeed, which he thought he was not:
and I have heard the voice of thy words; the sound of them, clearly and distinctly, and took in the sense of them, as he really believed:
saying; as follows.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
8. thy words—(Job 10:7; 16:17; 23:11, 12; 27:5, 6; 29:14). In Job 9:30; 13:23, Job had acknowledged sin; but the general spirit of his words was to maintain himself to be "clean," and to charge God with injustice. He went too far on the opposite side in opposing the friends' false charge of hypocrisy. Even the godly, though willing to confess themselves sinners in general, often dislike sin in particular to be brought as a charge against them. Affliction is therefore needed to bring them to feel that sin in them deserves even worse than they suffer and that God does them no injustice. Then at last humbled under God they find, affliction is for their real good, and so at last it is taken away either here, or at least at death. To teach this is Elihu's mission.
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