|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
36:15-23 Elihu shows that Job caused the continuance of his own trouble. He cautions him not to persist in frowardness. Even good men need to be kept to their duty by the fear of God's wrath; the wisest and best have enough in them to deserve his stroke. Let not Job continue his unjust quarrel with God and his providence. And let us never dare to think favourably of sin, never indulge it, nor allow ourselves in it. Elihu thinks Job needed this caution, he having chosen rather to gratify his pride and humour by contending with God, than to mortify them by submitting, and accepting the punishment. It is absurd for us to think to teach Him who is himself the Fountain of light, truth, knowledge, and instruction. He teaches by the Bible, and that is the best book; teaches by his Son, and he is the best Master. He is just in all proceedings.
Verse 22. - Behold, God exalteth by his power; rather, behold, God doeth loftily in his power (see the Revised Version). Who teacheth like him? This has been called "the key-note of Elihu's whole discourse" (Cook). The entire providential government of the world by God he views as didactic, as a series of moral lessons addressed to men by their Maker (see Job 33:14, 16; Job 35:11; Job 36:9, etc.). If the lessons intended are taken to heart, then all goes well with men; if they are rejected, then very sad and terrible results follow (Job 36:12).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Behold, God exalteth by his power,.... He exalts himself, or causes himself to be exalted, and even above all the blessing and praise of his creatures; by his power, in the works of creation and providence, he makes such a display of his glorious perfections, as to set him on high, and out of the reach of the highest praises of men. He exalts his Son as Mediator, and has made him higher than the kings of the earth, 1 Timothy 2:5; he exalts him as a Prince and a Saviour, Acts 5:31, to give repentance and remission of sins to his people, and to be the Judge of quick and dead, Acts 10:42. He has exalted the human nature of Christ to the grace of union to the Son of God: and exalted him in this nature at his right hand, far above all principality and power, Ephesians 1:21, he exalts men in a civil sense, who are in a low estate, and raises them to a very high one; promotion is alone of him, he sets up and puts down at pleasure. In a spiritual sense, he exalts men when he brings them out of a state of nature into an open state of grace; brings them out of the horrible pit, and sets their feet upon the rock Christ Jesus; takes them as beggars from the dunghill, and places them among princes, even the princes of his people; admits them to communion with himself, puts and keeps them in his favour, as in a garrison; and at last causes them to inherit the throne of glory, 1 Samuel 2:8. He exalts men, when he sets the poor on high from affliction, and brings them out of adversity into prosperity; and which is what may be chiefly intended here; let a man he brought as low as may, God can by his power, if he will, raise him up again. And this may be said for the comfort and encouragement of Job, in his present circumstances: and so Aben Ezra interprets it,
"God will exalt thee;''
as he afterwards did. The Targum is,
"behold, God alone is strong in his might;''
see Psalm 21:13;
who teacheth like him? He teaches by his providences, adverse as well as prosperous; he teaches by his word and ordinances; he teaches by his Spirit and grace, and none teaches like him. Ministers of the word teach men both doctrine and duty, but not like him; they have their gifts for teaching, their wisdom and knowledge, their doctrine, and all the use they are of, from him; none teach so pleasantly, so profitably, so powerfully and effectually, as he does: the Targum adds,
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
22-25. God is not to be impiously arraigned, but to be praised for His might, shown in His works.
exalteth—rather, doeth lofty things, shows His exalted power [Umbreit] (Ps 21:13).
teacheth—(Ps 94:12, &c.). The connection is, returning to Job 36:5, God's "might" is shown in His "wisdom"; He alone can teach; yet, because He, as a sovereign, explains not all His dealings, forsooth Job must presume to teach Him (Isa 40:13, 14; Ro 11:34; 1Co 2:16). So the transition to Job 36:23 is natural. Umbreit with the Septuagint translates, "Who is Lord," wrongly, as this meaning belongs to later Hebrew.
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