Job 34:17
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Can someone who hates justice govern? Will you condemn the just and mighty One?

New Living Translation
Could God govern if he hated justice? Are you going to condemn the almighty judge?

English Standard Version
Shall one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn him who is righteous and mighty,

Berean Study Bible
Could one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn the just and mighty One,

New American Standard Bible
"Shall one who hates justice rule? And will you condemn the righteous mighty One,

King James Bible
Shall even he that hateth right govern? and wilt thou condemn him that is most just?

Christian Standard Bible
Could one who hates justice govern the world? Will you condemn the mighty Righteous One,

Contemporary English Version
The mighty God is the one who brings about justice, and you are condemning him.

Good News Translation
Are you condemning the righteous God? Do you think that he hates justice?

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Could one who hates justice govern the world? Will you condemn the mighty Righteous One,

International Standard Version
Can one who hates justice really govern? And if God is righteous and mighty, can you condemn him?

NET Bible
Do you really think that one who hates justice can govern? And will you declare guilty the supremely righteous One,

New Heart English Bible
Shall even one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn him who is righteous and mighty?--

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Should anyone who hates justice be allowed to govern? Will you condemn the one who is righteous and mighty?

JPS Tanakh 1917
Shall even one that hateth right govern? And wilt thou condemn Him that is just and mighty--

New American Standard 1977
“Shall one who hates justice rule? And will you condemn a righteous mighty one,

Jubilee Bible 2000
Shall even he that hates judgment govern? And wilt thou condemn the Mighty One that is righteous?

King James 2000 Bible
Shall even he that hates right govern? and will you condemn him that is most just?

American King James Version
Shall even he that hates right govern? and will you condemn him that is most just?

American Standard Version
Shall even one that hateth justice govern? And wilt thou condemn him that is righteous and mighty?-

Douay-Rheims Bible
Can he be healed that loveth not judgment? and how dost thou so far condemn him that is just?

Darby Bible Translation
Should he that hateth right indeed govern? and wilt thou condemn the All-just?

English Revised Version
Shall even one that hateth right govern? and wilt thou condemn him that is just and mighty?

Webster's Bible Translation
Shall even he that hateth right govern? and wilt thou condemn him that is most just?

World English Bible
Shall even one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn him who is righteous and mighty?--

Young's Literal Translation
Yea, doth one hating justice govern? Or the Most Just dost thou condemn?
Study Bible
Elihu Confirms God's Justice
16If you have understanding, hear this; listen to my words. 17Could one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn the just and mighty One, 18who says to kings, ‘You are worthless!’ and to nobles, ‘You are wicked,’…
Cross References
2 Samuel 23:3
The God of Israel spoke; the Rock of Israel said to me, 'He who rules the people with justice, who rules in the fear of God,

Job 34:16
If you have understanding, hear this; listen to my words.

Job 34:18
who says to kings, 'You are worthless!' and to nobles, 'You are wicked,'

Job 34:30
that godless men should not rule or lay snares for the people.

Job 40:8
Would you really annul My justice? Would you condemn Me to justify yourself?

Treasury of Scripture

Shall even he that hates right govern? and will you condemn him that is most just?

even

Genesis 18:25 That be far from you to do after this manner, to slay the righteous …

2 Samuel 23:3 The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spoke to me, He that rules …

Romans 3:5-7 But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what …

govern. Heb. bind. wilt

Job 1:22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

Job 40:8 Will you also cancel my judgment? will you condemn me, that you may …

2 Samuel 19:21 But Abishai the son of Zeruiah answered and said, Shall not Shimei …

Romans 9:14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.







(17) Shall even he. . . .--The argument is that one who holds such a position of absolute rule cannot be other than most just. He who is fit to rule must be just, and He who is the ultimate ruler must be fit to rule, and must, therefore, be just; but if He is absolutely just, how shall we condemn His government or Him on account of it, even though we cannot explain it all or reconcile it with our view of what is right?

Him that is most just, is rather him that is just and mighty, i.e., not only just, but able also to execute justice because mighty.

Verse 17. - Shall even he that hateth right govern? Is it conceivable that there can be at the head of the universe, its Ruler and Guide, One who hates justice? The appeal is to the instinctive feeling that in the one God perfect goodness and omnipotence are united. Its spirit is exactly that of Abraham's question, "Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" (see Genesis 18:5). And wilt thou condemn him that is most just? rather, him that is both just and strong (see the Revised Version). Shall even he that hateth right govern?.... That hates moral and civil justice; is such an one fit to rule among men or over them? No, surely; for to love righteousness and do it is a qualification of a civil governor; it is his business to administer justice; and if an hater of it, he can never be a proper person to rule: and if God was an hater of that which is right, as he would seem to be if he did not do it, he would not be fit to govern the world as he does. To this absurdity is Job reduced, by suggesting that right was not done him, or that God had removed his judgment from him; see 2 Samuel 23:3, Romans 3:5. Mr. Broughton translates the words, "can a foe to judgment rule well?" And yet it cannot be denied, but must be owned, that God does judge in the earth, and judges righteously. Or shall such an one "bind" (b)? the allusion may be to a surgeon that binds up wounds. Sin makes wounds, and such as cannot be healed by men; but God can bind them up and cure them, and does: but would he do this if he hated that which is right, if he was not kind and merciful, just and good? see Hosea 6:1. Or, as others render it, which comes pretty near to the same sense, "shall a hater of judgment refrain wrath" (c)? Such are tyrants, cruel and unmerciful, full of wrath and vengeance, and which they execute in a barbarous manner: but such is not God; he stirs not up all his wrath, which he in justice might; he retains it not for ever, but delights in mercy;

and wilt thou condemn him that is most just? It is not right to condemn any just man, to charge him wrongfully, and then pass an unrighteous sentence on him; and much less to charge the righteous God with injustice, and condemn him that is most just, superlatively just; in whom there is not the least shadow of unrighteousness; who is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works; who is naturally, essentially, and infinitely righteous.

(b) "obligabit", Montanus; so Junius and Tremellius, Piscator, Cocceius, Michaelis. (c) "An nasum osor judicii fraenabit?" Schultens. 17. "Can even He who (in thy view) hateth right (justice) govern?" The government of the world would be impossible if injustice were sanctioned. God must be just, because He governs (2Sa 23:3).

govern—literally, "bind," namely, by authority (so "reign," 1Sa 9:17, Margin). Umbreit translates for "govern, repress wrath, namely, against Job for his accusations.

most just—rather, "Him who is at once mighty and just" (in His government of the world).34:16-30 Elihu appeals directly to Job himself. Could he suppose that God was like those earthly princes, who hate right, who are unfit to rule, and prove the scourges of mankind? It is daring presumption to condemn God's proceedings, as Job had done by his discontents. Elihu suggests divers considerations to Job, to produce in him high thoughts of God, and so to persuade him to submit. Job had often wished to plead his cause before God. Elihu asks, To what purpose? All is well that God does, and will be found so. What can make those uneasy, whose souls dwell at ease in God? The smiles of all the world cannot quiet those on whom God frowns.



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