Job 36:5
Behold, God is mighty, and despiseth not any: he is mighty in strength and wisdom.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Job 36:5. God is mighty, and despiseth not any — His greatness doth not cause him (as the greatness of men causeth them) to despise or oppress such as are mean. He is mighty in strength and wisdom — His strength is guided by wisdom, and therefore cannot be employed to do any thing unbecoming him, or unjust toward his creatures, either of which would be an instance of folly.

36:5-14 Elihu here shows that God acts as righteous Governor. He is always ready to defend those that are injured. If our eye is ever toward God in duty, his eye will be ever upon us in mercy, and, when we are at the lowest, will not overlook us. God intends, when he afflicts us, to discover past sins to us, and to bring them to our remembrance. Also, to dispose our hearts to be taught: affliction makes people willing to learn, through the grace of God working with and by it. And further, to deter us from sinning for the future. It is a command, to have no more to do with sin. If we faithfully serve God, we have the promise of the life that now is, and the comforts of it, as far as is for God's glory and our good: and who would desire them any further? We have the possession of inward pleasures, the great peace which those have that love God's law. If the affliction fail in its work, let men expect the furnace to be heated till they are consumed. Those that die without knowledge, die without grace, and are undone for ever. See the nature of hypocrisy; it lies in the heart: that is for the world and the flesh, while perhaps the outside seems to be for God and religion. Whether sinners die in youth, or live long to heap up wrath, their case is dreadful. The souls of the wicked live after death, but it is in everlasting misery.Behold, God is Mighty - This is the first consideration which Elihu urges, and the purpose seems to be to affirm that God is so great that he has no occasion to modify his treatment of any class of people from a reference to himself. He is wholly independent of all, and can therefore be impartial in his dealings. If it were otherwise; if he were dependent upon human beings for any share of his happiness, he might be tempted to show special favor to the great and to the rich; to spare the mighty who are wicked, though he cut off the poor. But he has no such inducement, as he is wholly independent; and it is to be presumed, therefore, that he treats all impartially; see the notes at Job 35:5-8.

And despiseth not any - None who are poor and humble. He does not pass them by with cold neglect because they are poor and power. less, and turn his attention to the great and mighty because he is dependent on them.

He is mighty in wisdom - Margin, "heart." The word "heart" in Hebrew is often used to denote the intellectual powers; and the idea here is, that God has perfect wisdom in the management of his affairs. He is acquainted with all the circumstances of his creatures, and passes by none from a defect of knowledge, or frown a lack of wisdom to know how to adopt his dealings to their condition.

5. Rather, "strength of understanding" (heart) the force of the repetition of "mighty"; as "mighty" as God is, none is too low to be "despised" by Him; for His "might" lies especially in "His strength of understanding," whereby He searches out the most minute things, so as to give to each his right. Elihu confirms his exhortation (Job 35:14). His greatness doth not make him (as it doth men) to scorn, or despise, or oppress the meanest. Though he may do what he pleaseth, and none can hinder him, yet he will not use it to do any man wrong, as Job seemed to insinuate, Job 10:3 19:7 23:13. His strength is guided by wisdom, and therefore cannot be employed to do any thing unbecoming God, or unjust to his creatures; for either of these is folly. Or,

in strength, or virtue of heart; for the and is not in the Hebrew. So the sense is, He is truly magnanimous, of a great and generous mind or heart, and therefore not unrighteous; for all injustice proceeds from littleness or weakness of heart. Truly great souls scorn unjust actions.

Behold, God is mighty,.... This is a clear plain truth, easy to be discerned, and worthy of notice, and therefore introduced with a "behold"; that God is mighty, the most mighty, the Almighty, as appears from his works of nature and providence; making all things out of nothing, upholding them by the word of his power, and governing and overruling all things in the world, and doing in it whatever he pleases: and from the works of redemption and grace; ransoming his people out of the hands of them that are stronger than they; converting them by the power of his grace; assisting them to do all they do in a spiritual way; supporting them under all their troubles; protecting and defending them from all their enemies; supplying all their wants, and preserving them safe to his kingdom and glory;

and despises not any; not the meanest of his creatures, clothing the grass of the field, feeding the fowls of the air, and preserving man and beast; and particularly he despises not any of the sons of men: not the mighty through fear of them, nor envy at them, whose power and grandeur are from him, which he gives and can take away at his pleasure; nor the mean and miserable the poor and the afflicted, to whom he has a merciful regard; much less the innocent and harmless, as the Septuagint; or the just and righteous man, as the Targum: he does not despise his own people, whom he has loved and chosen, redeemed and called; nor any, as Aben Ezra observes, without a cause; for though there are some whose image he will despise, it is because of their own sins and transgressions; and since, therefore, though he is mighty, yet despises not any of his creatures, he cannot do any unrighteous thing; he does not and cannot use or abuse his power to the in jury of any of his creatures;

he is mighty in strength and wisdom, as there is a pleonasm, a redundancy in the expression, "mighty in strength", it denotes the abundance of his strength, that he is exceeding strong, superlatively and all expression so; and also strong in wisdom, his strength is tempered with wisdom, so that he cannot employ it to any bad purpose, or be guilty of any unrighteousness. Some men have strength, but not wisdom to make a right use of it; but God abounds as much in wisdom as in strength; he is the only wise and the all wise God, and therefore can do no injustice; and thus Elihu, as he promised, ascribes righteousness to his almighty Maker.

Behold, God is mighty, and despiseth not any: he is {c} mighty in strength and wisdom.

(c) Strong and constant, and of understanding: for these are the gifts of God, and he loves them in man: but as much as God punished Job now, it is a sign that these are not in him.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
5. and despiseth not] Though God is mighty He despiseth or dis-daineth not, He gives the weakest his rights as much as the most powerful, for they are all the work of His hand, ch. Job 34:19. The words express Elihu’s conception of God, which He opposes to the conception of Job (e.g. ch. 7 and often).

in strength and wisdom] Rather, in strength of understanding; lit of heart. It is this perfection of understanding, in which God’s greatness consists, that makes it impossible that He should “despise” any. To know life, however mean, is to love it.

5–25. Elihu’s doctrine is in a word: God is great and despiseth not, He is great in strength of heart. His greatness is that of understanding, which enables Him to estimate all rightly, to see through all right and wrong, and to adapt His providence to the strong and to the weak, the evil and the good. This thought with the illustrations of it, Job 36:6-15, and the application of it to Job , vv16-25, exhaust the first half of this concluding speech.

Verse 5. - Behold, God is mighty. The preface over, the argument to prove God's justice begins. First, he "is mighty." How unlikely that any one who is mighty - nay, almighty - should be unjust! Next, he despiseth not any. Job has wrongly charged him with "despising the work of his own hands." In truth, he despises nothing that he has made. "Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall to the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered" (Matthew 10:29, 30). Much less, then, is any man despised. Moreover, God is mighty in strength and wisdom; or rather, in strength of undertaking and therefore above the weakness of being unjust. Job 36:5 5 Behold, God is mighty, and yet doth not act scornfully,

Mighty in power of understanding.

6 He preserveth not the life of the ungodly,

And to the afflicted He giveth right.

7 He withdraweth not His eyes from the righteous,

But with kings on the throne

He establisheth them for ever, and they are exalted.

The obj. that must be mentally supplied to ימאס ולא is, as in Job 42:6, to be derived from the connection. The idea of the verb is, as in Job 8:20 : He is exalted, without however looking down disdainfully (non despicit) from His height, or more definitely: without setting Himself above the justice due to even the meanest of His creatures - great in power of heart (comp. Job 34:33 אנשׁי לבב, Arab. ûlû-l-elbâb), i.e., understanding (νοῦς πνεῦμα), to see through right and wrong everywhere and altogether. Job 36:6, Job 36:7 describe how His rule among men evinces this not merely outward but spiritual superiority coupled with condescension to the lowly. The notion of the object, ואת־מלכים לכּסּא (as Isaiah 9:11 the subject), becomes the more distinctly prominent by virtue of the fut. consec. which follows like a conclusion, and takes it up again. Ewald thinks this explanation contrary to the accents and the structure of the sentence itself; but it is perfectly consistent with the former, and indisputably syntactic (Ges. 129, 2, b, and Ew. himself, 344, b). Psalm 9:5, comp. Psalm 132:12, Isaiah 47:1, shows how לכסא is intended (He causes them to sit upon the throne). Job 5:11; 1 Samuel 2:8; Psalm 113:7. are parallel passages.

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