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Job 4:12-15



12 Now a thing [dabar] was secretly brought [ganab] to me, and mine ear ['ozen] received [laqach] a little [shemets] thereof.

13 In thoughts [ca`iph] from the visions [chizzayown] of the night [layil], when deep sleep [tardemah] falleth [naphal] on men ['enowsh],

14 Fear [pachad] came [qara'] upon me, and trembling [ra`ad], which made all [rob] my bones [`etsem] to shake [pachad].

15 Then a spirit [ruwach] passed [chalaph] before my face [paniym]; the hair [sa`arah] of my flesh [basar] stood up [camar]: KJV-Interlinear



12 'Now a word was brought to me stealthily, And my ear received a whisper of it. 13 'Amid disquieting thoughts from the visions of the night, When deep sleep falls on men, 14 Dread came upon me, and trembling, And made all my bones shake. 15 'Then a spirit passed by my face; The hair of my flesh bristled up. NASB

Eliphaz is in the process of reprimanding Job for his sins. He is doing it in a subtle way, using general terms, and not really making any direct accusation against Job. The direct accusations against Job will come in later chapters, but for now, this is really a courtesy lesson on sin and punishment.

Now Eliphaz is going to relate a spiritual experience, a vision, which he has had. It begins with time in the night when he was sleeping and dreaming, and then a whisper came to his ear. It was late at night when people are typically in their deepest periods of sleep.

Fear and terror came over him to such an extent that he trembled. A spirit, as he describes it, passed by him and moved about, until it finally came to a standstill in front of him.

Eliphaz is not making this event up. This really did happen to him. There is nothing in the context to indicate that this was something other than a legitimate vision.

In the Old Testament, God presented himself before many people, both good and bad. In the Garden, he walked with Adam and Eve. God spoke to Cain. God spoke to Laban, warning him not to mess with Jacob. God spoke to Abimelech, to Pharaoh, to Joseph, to the chief butler and chief baker, in Joseph's day. God spoke to Balaam and Nebuchadnezzar, to Daniel, to all of the prophets, and many more. God used several forms of communication such as dreams and visions, and even intermediary angels, when He spoke.

In the early days of human history, there is every reason to believe that God indeed communicated to several folks. Eliphaz being one of them, as mentioned here. Not every communication was documented in the scriptures, as John mentions in the last chapter of John.

John 21:25

25 And there are also many other things which Jesus did, which if they were written in detail, I suppose that even the world itself would not contain the books which were written. NASB

And, as we will see later, not every communication will be interpreted correctly by its recipient.

Eliphaz does not mention the time of his vision, but we presume that it occurred at some time prior to his visit with Job, just as all of his life's observations while growing up, occurred prior to this visit. So, this vision has no direct link with Job's situation.

The vision is one of a list of observations, like the lion observation, like the plowing and sowing observation, like the innocent and guilty observation. Each observation has its components of truth, but Eliphaz's application is the problem, not the principle being stated.

And by the way, today, in our dispensation, we have the completed written scriptures, so we no longer receive communications in any other form from God. Beware of folks who suggest that they have talked with God.

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Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.

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