Darby's Bible Synopsis
Elihu also proceeded, and said,
The following commentary covers Chapters 32 through 37.
But these spiritual affections of Job did not prevent his turning this consciousness of integrity into a robe of self-righteousness which hid God from him, and even hid him from himself. He declares himself to be more righteous than God (Job 10:7-8; Job 16:14-17; Job 23:11-13; Job 27:2-6). Elihu reproves him for this, and on the other hand explains the ways of God. He shews that God visits man and chastises him, in order that when subdued and broken down-if there is one who can shew him the point of moral contact between his soul and God, in which his soul would stand in truth before Him [See Note #1] -God may act in grace and blessing, and deliver him from the evil that oppresses him. Elihu goes on to shew him that, if God chastises, it is becoming in man to set himself before God to learn wherein he has done wrong: in short, that the ways of God are right, that He withdraweth not His eyes from the righteous, but if they are in affliction He shews them their transgressions, and if they return to Him in obedience when He openeth their ear to discipline, He will give them prosperity; but that the hypocrite shall perish. The first case which Elihu brings forward (chap. 33) is God's dealings with men. He awakens their consciences to their state, and puts His bridle on the pride and self-will of man. God chastises and humbles him. The second is specially with the righteous (chap. 36), the case of positive transgression but in one righteous in God's sight, from whom He withdraws not His eyes, in whom He allowed not iniquity; but in the first case he was in the path of destruction. It was this case2] which needed the interpreter to place him in uprightness before God. Finally, he insists upon the incomprehensible power of God Almighty.
This is a very important point. God can bless in a direct manner with the light of His grace, when the soul is brought into its true place, to what it really is in His sight. Then, whatever its state may be, He can bless it, in respect of that state, with increased light and grace. If I have got far from Him, and careless in walk, when I have the consciousness how far I am, He can fully and directly bless. But the soul must be brought into the recognition of its state, or there would be no real blessing; I should not see God in unison with it. For its sensible state did not answer to its real state in God's sight.
In this case it may be a first conviction of sin, or the knowledge of self where self has never been really judged, as was Job's case.
Suffer me a little, and I will shew thee that I have yet to speak on God's behalf.
I will fetch my knowledge from afar, and will ascribe righteousness to my Maker.
For truly my words shall not be false: he that is perfect in knowledge is with thee.
Behold, God is mighty, and despiseth not any: he is mighty in strength and wisdom.
He preserveth not the life of the wicked: but giveth right to the poor.
He withdraweth not his eyes from the righteous: but with kings are they on the throne; yea, he doth establish them for ever, and they are exalted.
And if they be bound in fetters, and be holden in cords of affliction;
Then he sheweth them their work, and their transgressions that they have exceeded.
He openeth also their ear to discipline, and commandeth that they return from iniquity.
If they obey and serve him, they shall spend their days in prosperity, and their years in pleasures.
But if they obey not, they shall perish by the sword, and they shall die without knowledge.
But the hypocrites in heart heap up wrath: they cry not when he bindeth them.
They die in youth, and their life is among the unclean.
He delivereth the poor in his affliction, and openeth their ears in oppression.
Even so would he have removed thee out of the strait into a broad place, where there is no straitness; and that which should be set on thy table should be full of fatness.
But thou hast fulfilled the judgment of the wicked: judgment and justice take hold on thee.
Because there is wrath, beware lest he take thee away with his stroke: then a great ransom cannot deliver thee.
Will he esteem thy riches? no, not gold, nor all the forces of strength.
Desire not the night, when people are cut off in their place.
Take heed, regard not iniquity: for this hast thou chosen rather than affliction.
Behold, God exalteth by his power: who teacheth like him?
Who hath enjoined him his way? or who can say, Thou hast wrought iniquity?
Remember that thou magnify his work, which men behold.
Every man may see it; man may behold it afar off.
Behold, God is great, and we know him not, neither can the number of his years be searched out.
For he maketh small the drops of water: they pour down rain according to the vapour thereof:
Which the clouds do drop and distil upon man abundantly.
Also can any understand the spreadings of the clouds, or the noise of his tabernacle?
Behold, he spreadeth his light upon it, and covereth the bottom of the sea.
For by them judgeth he the people; he giveth meat in abundance.
With clouds he covereth the light; and commandeth it not to shine by the cloud that cometh betwixt.
The noise thereof sheweth concerning it, the cattle also concerning the vapour.