Job 32
New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition

Elihu Rebukes Job’s Friends

1So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes. 2Then Elihu son of Barachel the Buzite, of the family of Ram, became angry. He was angry at Job because he justified himself rather than God; 3he was angry also at Job’s three friends because they had found no answer, though they had declared Job to be in the wrong.[a] 4Now Elihu had waited to speak to Job, because they were older than he. 5But when Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouths of these three men, he became angry.

6Elihu son of Barachel the Buzite answered:

“I am young in years,
    and you are aged;
therefore I was timid and afraid
    to declare my opinion to you.
7I said, ‘Let days speak,
    and many years teach wisdom.’
8But truly it is the spirit in a mortal,
    the breath of the Almighty,[b] that makes for understanding.
9It is not the old[c] that are wise,
    nor the aged that understand what is right.
10Therefore I say, ‘Listen to me;
    let me also declare my opinion.’

11“See, I waited for your words,
    I listened for your wise sayings,
    while you searched out what to say.
12I gave you my attention,
    but there was in fact no one that confuted Job,
    no one among you that answered his words.
13Yet do not say, ‘We have found wisdom;
    God may vanquish him, not a human.’
14He has not directed his words against me,
    and I will not answer him with your speeches.

15“They are dismayed, they answer no more;
    they have not a word to say.
16And am I to wait, because they do not speak,
    because they stand there, and answer no more?
17I also will give my answer;
    I also will declare my opinion.
18For I am full of words;
    the spirit within me constrains me.
19My heart is indeed like wine that has no vent;
    like new wineskins, it is ready to burst.
20I must speak, so that I may find relief;
    I must open my lips and answer.
21I will not show partiality to any person
    or use flattery toward anyone.
22For I do not know how to flatter—
    or my Maker would soon put an end to me!


  1. Job 32:3 Another ancient tradition reads answer, and had put God in the wrong
  2. Job 32:8 Traditional rendering of Heb Shaddai
  3. Job 32:9 Gk Syr Vg: Heb many
Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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