Job 35:7
If you be righteous, what give you him? or what receives he of your hand?
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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.If thou be righteous, what givest thou him? - The same sentiment substantially as in the previous verses. It is, that God is supreme and independent. He does not desire such benefits from the services of his friends and is not so dependent on them; as to be induced to interpose in their favor, in any way beyond what is strictly proper. It is to be presumed, therefore, that he will deal with them according to what is right, and as it is right that they should experience proofs of his favor, it followed that there "would be" advantage in serving him, and in being delivered from sin; that it "would be" better to be holy than to lead a life of transgression. This reasoning seems to be somewhat abstract, but it is correct, and is as sound now as it was in the time of Elihu. There is no reason why God should not treat people according to their character. He is not so under obligations to his friends, and has not such cause to dread his foes; he does not derive so much benefit from the one, or receive such injury from the other, that he is under any inducement to swerve from strict justice; and it follows, therefore, that where there ought to be reward there will be, where there ought to be punishment there will be, and consequently that there is an advantage in being righteous. 7. (Ps 16:2; Pr 9:12; Lu 17:10). He gaineth nothing by it, nor can indeed receive any good from thee, because all thy good comes from him. And therefore thou hast no reason to boast of nor to upbraid God with thy piety, which is much to thy advantage, but nothing to his. If thou be righteous, what givest thou him?.... All righteousness is of God that any creatures have. What the angels in heaven have, or Adam had in a state of innocence; or what believers in Christ have in and from him; his righteousness imputed to them is of God; the grace of righteousness, or holiness, imparted to them and implanted in them, is from him; and it is under the influence of his Spirit, and by his grace and strength, they do works of righteousness externally; and therefore can give nothing to him of their own, nor does he need any, being God all sufficient; even the goodness of his Son does not extend to him, but to the saints, Psalm 16:2; much less any goodness of theirs: their best works of righteousness are due to him, and not gifts; and though they may contribute to his manifestative glory, both in them that do them and in others that see them, they can add nothing to the essential glory of God;

or what receiveth he of thine hand? He can receive nothing but what he has given, or what he has a prior right to and is his due, and so cannot be laid under any obligation to man by what he does; nor can man merit anything at his hand, not even the least temporal mercy, and much less spiritual ones and everlasting life: and what notice God is pleased to take of the good works of men, in away of reward, is not of debt, but of grace, and entirely owing to his goodness; and does not arise from any intrinsic worth in them, or from any advantage to him by them.

If thou be righteous, what givest thou him? or what receiveth he of thine hand?
Verse 7. - If thou be righteous, what givest thou him? By parity of reasoning, as our sins do not injure God, so our righteousness cannot benefit him. As David says, "My goodness extendeth not to thee" (Psalm 16:2). Or what receiveth he of thine hand? All things being already God's, we can but give him of his own. We cannot really add to his possessions, or to his glory, or to his felicity. We cannot, as some have supposed they could ('Religions of the Ancient World,' pp. 143, 144), lay him under an obligation. 1 Then began Elihu, and said:

2 Dost thou consider this to be right,

Sayest thou: my righteousness exceedeth God's,

3 That thou sayest, what advantage is it to thee,

What doth it profit me more than my sin?

4 I will answer thee words,

And thy companions with thee.

The neutral זאת, Job 35:2, refers prospectively to כּי־תאמר, Job 35:3: this that thou sayest. חשׁב with acc. of the obj. and ל of the predicate, as Job 33:10, comp. Job 13:24, and freq. The second interrogative clause, Job 35:2, is co-ordinate with the first, and the collective thought of this ponderous construction, Job 35:2, Job 35:3, is this: Considerest thou this to be right, and thinkest thou on this account to be able to put thy righteousness above the divine, that, as thou maintainest, no righteousness on the side of God corresponds to this thy righteousness, because God makes no distinction between righteousness and the sin of man, and allows the former to go unrewarded? צדקי (for which Olsh. wishes to read צדקתּי, as Job 9:27 אמרתי for אמרי) forms with מאל a substantival clause: justitia mea est prae Deo (prae divina); מן comparative as Job 32:2, comp. on the matter Job 34:5, not equivalent to ἀπό as Job 4:17. כי־תאמר is first followed by the oratio obliqua: what it (viz., צדקך) advantageth thee, then by the or. directa (on this change vid., Ew. 338, a): what profit have I((viz., בצדקי), prae peccato meo; this מן is also comparative; the constantly ambiguous combination would be allowable from the fact that, according to the usage of the language, "to obtain profit from anything" is expressed by הועיל בּ, not by הועיל מן. Moreover, prae peccato meo is equivalent to plus quam inde quod pecco, comp. Psalm 18:24, מעוני, Hosea 4:8 אל־עונם. We have already on Job 34:9 observed that Job has not directly said (he cites it, Job 21:15, as the saying of the ungodly) what Elihu in Job 35:3 puts into his mouth, but as an inference it certainly is implied in such utterances as Job 9:22. Elihu's polemic against Job and his companions (רעיך are not the three, as lxx and Jer. translate, but the אנשׁי און, to whom Job is likened by such words as Job 34:8, Job 34:36) is therefore not unauthorized; especially since he assails the conclusion together with its premises. In the second strophe the vindication of the conclusion is now refuted.

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