|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
35:1-8 Elihu reproves Job for justifying himself more than God, and called his attention to the heavens. They are far above us, and God is far above them; how much then is he out of the reach, either of our sins or of our services! We have no reason to complain if we have not what we expect, but should be thankful that we have better than we deserve.
Verse 8. - Thy wickedness may hurt a man as thou art; and thy righteousness may profit the son (rather, a son) of man. Job must not think, Elihu means, that, because his good actions benefit and his bad actions injure his fellow men, therefore they must also in the one case injure and in the other benefit God. The cases are not parallel. God is too remote, too powerful, too great, to be touched by his actions. Job has done wrong, therefore, to expect that God would necessarily reward his righteousness by prosper us, happy life, and worse to complain because his expectations have been disappointed. It is of his mere spontaneous goodness and bounty that God rewards the godly.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thy wickedness may hurt a man as thou art,.... But not God: a man may hurt himself by his wickedness; his body, by bringing various diseases upon it, through debauchery and intemperance; his family and estate, by wasting it; his soul, for every sin is a wrong and injury to a man's soul, and exposes it to ruin and destruction: and sin does even a good man harm, since it breaks in upon his peace, and hinders his communion with God; and the wickedness of men may harm others like themselves, frail, mortal, sinful creatures, and easily led aside by ill examples; as well as there are many sins which do injury to the persons, families, and estates of others, as murder, adultery, theft, &c. and since sin is harmful to others, God resents it, and punishes for it, though, strictly speaking, it cannot harm him in the sense before given;
and thy righteousness may profit the son of man; may profit a man himself (, Job 35:3), and others, but neither for justification before God; but godliness is profitable to a man's self, both for this life and that to come, and good works are profitable to other men; for what reasons they are to be performed and maintained, see 1 Timothy 4:8. Some are of real and direct profit to men, as acts of beneficence to them, and all as being examples to them; but then no works of righteousness can be profitable to God, they adding nothing to him; which is what Elihu undertook to answer to.
Job 35:8 Parallel Commentaries
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