Job 35:12
There they cry, but none gives answer, because of the pride of evil men.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Job 35:12. There they cry — Or then, as the Hebrew particle here used often means; that is, in that time or condition of trouble; but none giveth answer — The reason that God doth not deliver them is, because, though they lie crying under their afflictions, they continue to be evil, wicked, and impenitent; proud and unhumbled for those sins, on account of which God brought these miseries upon them.35:9-13 Job complained that God did not regard the cries of the oppressed against their oppressors. This he knew not how to reconcile the justice of God and his government. Elihu solves the difficulty. Men do not notice the mercies they enjoy in and under their afflictions, nor are thankful for them, therefore they cannot expect that God should deliver them out of affliction. He gives songs in the night; when our condition is dark and melancholy, there is that in God's providence and promise, which is sufficient to support us, and to enable us even to rejoice in tribulation. When we only pore upon our afflictions, and neglect the consolations of God which are treasured up for us, it is just in God to reject our prayers. Even the things that will kill the body, cannot hurt the soul. If we cry to God for the removal of an affliction, and it is not removed, the reason is, not because the Lord's hand is shortened, or his ear heavy; but because we are not sufficiently humbled.There they cry - They cry out in the language of complaint, but not for mercy.

Because of the pride of evil men - That is, of their own pride. The pride of men so rebellious, and so disposed to complain of God, is the reason why they do not appeal to him to sustain them and give them relief. This is still as true as it was in the time of Elihu. The pride of the heart, even in affliction, is the true reason with multitudes why they do not appeal to God, and why they do not pray. They have valued themselves on their independence of spirit. They have been accustomed to rely on their own resources. They have been unwilling to recognize their dependence on any being whatever. Even in their trials, the heart is too wicked to acknowledge God, and they would be ashamed to be known to do what they regard as so weak a thing as "to pray." Hence, they complain in their afflictions; they linger on in their sufferings without consolation, and then die without hope. However inapplicable, therefore, this solution of the difficulty may have been to the case of Job, it is "not" inapplicable to the case of multitudes of sufferers. "Many of the afflicted have no peace or consolation in their trials - no 'songs in the night' - because they are too proud to pray!"

12. There—rather, "Then" (when none humbly casts himself on God, Job 35:10). They cry proudly against God, rather than humbly to God. So, as the design of affliction is to humble the sufferer, there can be no answer until "pride" gives place to humble, penitent prayer (Ps 10:4; Jer 13:17). There, or then, as this particle is used, Psalm 14:5 Ecclesiastes 3:17 Zephaniah 1:14; in that time or condition.

The pride of evil men; either

1. Of the oppressors. So this is the reason not of the last clause, why none answereth, but of the former, why they cry; the latter clause being therefore shut up within a parenthesis, and the words thus are to be transposed, as some place them,

There they cry, because of the pride of evil men, but none giveth answer; the reason whereof followeth in the next verse. Or rather,

2. Of the oppressed persons. And so there is no need of any parenthesis or transposition. And so these words contain one reason of the words immediately foregoing, which is most natural, and easy, and usual, to wit, why none giveth answer, i.e. why God doth not answer nor regard their cries, because of their pride, &c., because they are both evil, wicked and impenitent, and proud, unhumbled for those sins for which God brought these miseries upon them, and unsubdued to the obedience of God. There they cry,.... As brutes do, and as in, Job 35:9; by reason of their oppressions, but not under a due sense of the hand of God upon them, nor of his being their only helper, and saviour, and deliverer;

but none giveth answer; to them, either God or men, and they lie groaning and howling under their oppression;

because of the pride of evil men; this is either to be connected with "they cry", and then the sense is, that they cry by reason of the oppressions of wicked men, who, through the pride of their hearts, and to show their superior power and authority, persecute and distress them, Psalm 10:2. And it is because of this they cry out, being distressed by them, and not through any sense of sin they have committed, as the reason of God's suffering them to be thus oppressed: or "with none give answer"; God gives them no answer to their cry, because pride is not withdrawn from them, which is one end he has in afflicting men; because they are not humbled under the mighty hand of God, and are not brought to a sense of sin and humiliation for it, and acknowledgment of it. And another reason follows:

There they cry, {f} but none giveth answer, because of the pride of evil men.

(f) Because they pray not in faith, as feeling God's mercies.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
12. The first and last words of the verse are in connexion: “they cry because of the pride of evil men, but none giveth answer.” They remain unheard because their cry is “vanity” (Job 35:13).Verse 12. - There they cry. "There," smitten by calamity, they do at last cry to God. But none giveth answer. They "ask, and receive not." Why? Because of the pride of evil men. Because, i.e., they ask proudly, not humbly; they claim relief as a right, not as a favour; they approach God in a spirit that offends him and prevents him from granting their requests. 5 Look towards heaven and see,

And behold the ethereal heights: they are high above thee.

6 If thou sinnest, what dost thou effect with Him?

And if thy transgressions are many, what doest thou to Him?

7 If thou art righteous, what dost thou give Him,

Or what doth He take from thy hand?

8 To man like thee thy godlessness availeth,

And to thee, a son of man, thy righteousness.

Towards heaven he is to direct his gaze, to obtain from the height of heaven a notion of the exaltation of God who dwells above the heavens. The combination הבּיט וראה is like Psalm 80:15 and freq. שׁחקים (שׁחק, Arab. sḥq, to rub in pieces, make thin, therefore the opposite of עבים) are the thin transparent strata of the atmosphere above the hanging clouds. מן after גּבהּ denotes the height that is on the opposite side to the beholder. From the exaltation of God it is then further inferred that it is impossible to exercise any human influence upon Him, by which He might suffer. The pointing wavers here between תּפעל (the common fut. form) and תּפעל(as a contraction of תּפעל after the form אזעם, Numbers 23:8). Human wrong or right doing neither diminishes nor increases His blessedness; injury or advantage is only on the side of man, from whom it proceeds. Others, whom his conduct affect, are not included in Job 35:8 : righteous or ungodly doing, Elihu means to say, as such and with its consequences, belongs solely to the doer himself, the man "like thee" (לאישׁ with Munach, כּמוך with Munach), the son of man, i.e., man, capable of evil as of good, and who always, after deciding in favour of the latter or the former, determines his fortune or misfortune, in distinction from God, who ever remains unchangeably the same in His perfect righteousness. What Elihu here says we have already heard from Eliphaz, Job 22:2., and Job even expresses himself similarly in Job 7:20; but to Elihu's mind it all becomes for Job new and powerful motives to quiet submission, for what objection should Job raise in justification of his complaints concerning his affliction against such sentiments as these, that goodness bears its reward and evil its punishment in itself, and that God's reward of goodness is not a work of indebtedness, nor His punishment of evil a work of necessity? Before such truth he must really hold his peace.

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