Job 32:11
Behold, I waited for your words; I gave ear to your reasons, whilst ye searched out what to say.
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Job 32:11. Behold, I waited for your words — With silence, patience, and diligent attention, which therefore I now expect from you. I gave ear to your reasons — Or, reasonings; Hebrew, תבונותיכם, tebunotheichem, your understandings, or minds; the depth and strength of your discourses; your most intelligent and forcible arguments against Job. While you searched out what to say — While you put your inventions upon the rack, and studied to find out all that could be said against him, and to furnish yourselves with the most convincing words and reasons.

32:6-14 Elihu professes to speak by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and corrects both parties. He allowed that those who had the longest experience should speak first. But God gives wisdom as he pleases; this encouraged him to state his opinion. By attention to the word of God, and dependence upon the Holy Spirit, young men may become wiser than the aged; but this wisdom will render them swift to hear, slow to speak, and disposed to give others a patient hearing.I gave ear to your reasons - Margin, "understandings." The meaning is, that he had given the most respectful attention to the views which they had expressed, implying that he had been all along present, and had listened to the debate.

Whilst ye searched out what to say - Margin, as in Hebrew, words. It is implied here that they had bestowed much attention on what they had said. They had carefully sought out all the arguments at their command to confute Job, and still had been unsuccessful.

11. Therefore Elihu was present from the first.

reasons—literally, "understandings," that is, the meaning intended by words.

whilst—I waited until you should discover a suitable reply to Job.

I waited with silence, and patience, and diligent attention; which therefore I now expect from you.

Your reasons; or, reasonings, Heb. understandings; or mind’s; the depth and strength of your discourses, your most intelligent and forcible arguments against Job; I searched and examined them to the bottom.

Whilst ye searched out what to say; whilst you put your inventions upon the rack, and studied to find out all that could be said against him, and to furnish yourselves with the most convincing words and reasons.

Behold, I waited for your words,.... With great desire, with great eagerness and earnestness, in hope of meeting with arguments fully satisfying and convincing; he waited for them, as for the rain, and the latter rain, to be revived, refreshed, and edified therewith; and he patiently waited until they had done speaking:

I gave ear to your reasons, or "understandings" (r); endeavoured to get into the sense and meaning of their words; not only attended to what they did say, but to what he thought they meant to say: some are not so happy in their expressions; and yet, by what they do say, with close attention it may be understood what they aim at, what is their drift and design; this Elihu was careful to attain unto, not barely to hear their words, but penetrate, if possible, into their meaning:

whilst ye searched out what to say; for they did not make their replies to Job immediately, and say what came uppermost at once, but they took time to think of things, and to search out for the most forcible arguments to refute Job, and strengthen their cause; it is very probable they made a pause at the end of every speech of Job's, and considered what was proper to be said in reply, and, perhaps, consulted each other.

(r) "usque ad intellignetias vestras", Pagninus, Montanus, Cocceius, Schultens; "usque ad sensa vestra", Beza, Junius & Tremellius.

Behold, I waited for your words; I gave ear to your reasons, whilst ye searched out {g} what to say.

(g) To prove that Job's affliction came for his sins.

11. I gave ear to your reasons] Or, I listened for your reasons, until ye should search out what to say. The meaning seems to be that Elihu looked for further and different arguments from the three friends.

11–14. Elihu, directly addressing the three friends, states more clearly his reasons for taking upon him to speak: he had hoped to hear them confute Job, and was disappointed in their arguments; Job may be shewn to be in the wrong, though with different arguments from those they had employed. In Elihu’s opinion the cause of the three friends was much better than their advocacy of it.

Verse 11. - Behold, I waited for your words; i.e. "I was full of expectation; I waited impatiently to hear what you would say." Then, while you spoke, I gave ear to your reasons - or, your reasonings; I did my best to apprehend your meaning - whilst ye searched out what to say. Professor Lee translates, "whilst ye examined Job's conclusions; but the Authorized Version is probably correct. Elihu means that he listened carefully while the friends hunted out all the arguments they could think of in order to confute Job. Job 32:1111 Behold, I waited upon your words,

Hearkened to your perceptions,

While ye searched out replies.

12 And I attended closely to you,

Yet behold: there was no one who refuted Job,

Who answered his sentences, from you.

13 Lest ye should say: "We found wisdom,

God is able to smite him, not man!"

14 Now he hath not arranged his words against me,

And with your sentences I will not reply to him.

He has waited for their words, viz., that they might give utterance to such words as should tend to refute and silence Job. In what follows, עד still more emphatically than ל refers this aim to that to which Elihu had paid great attention: I hearkened to your understandings, i.e., explanations of the matter, that, or whether, they came forth, (I hearkened) to see if you searched or found out words, i.e., appropriate words. Such abbreviated forms as אזין equals אאזין (comp. מזין equals מיזין for מעזין, Proverbs 17:4, Ges. 68, rem. 1, if it does not signify nutriens, from זוּן) we shall frequently meet with in this Elihu section. In Job 32:12, Job 32:12 evidently is related as an antecedent to what follows: and I paid attention to you (עדיכם contrary to the analogy of the cognate praep. instead of עדיכם, moreover for עליכם, with the accompanying notion: intently, or, according to Aben-Duran: thoroughly, without allowing a word to escape me), and behold, intently as I paid attention: no one came forward to refute Job; there was no one from or among you who answered (met successfully) his assertions. Every unbiassed reader will have an impression of the remarkable expressions and constructions here, similar to that which one has in passing from the book of the Kings to the characteristic sections of the Chronicles. The three, Elihu goes on to say, shall not indeed think that in Job a wisdom has opposed them - a false wisdom, indeed - which only God and not any man can drive out of the field (נדף, Arab. ndf, discutere, dispellere, as the wind drives away chaff or dry leaves); while he has not, however (ולא followed directly by a v. fin. forming a subordinate clause, as Job 42:3; Psalm 44:18, and freq., Ew. 341, a), arrayed (ערך in a military sense, Job 33:5; or forensic, Job 23:4; or even as Job 37:19, in the general sense of proponere) words against him (Elihu), i.e., utterances before which he would be compelled to confess himself affected and overcome. He will not then also answer him with such opinions as those so frequently repeated by them, i.e., he will take a totally different course from theirs in order to refute him.

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