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Job 33:8-12



8 Surely thou hast spoken ['amar] in mine hearing ['ozen], and I have heard [shama`] the voice [qowl] of thy words [millah], saying,

9 I am clean [zak] without transgression [pesha`], I am innocent [chaph]; neither is there iniquity [`avon] in me.

10 Behold, he findeth [matsa'] occasions [tanuw'ah] against me, he counteth [chashab] me for his enemy ['oyeb],

11 He putteth [suwm] my feet [regel] in the stocks [cad], he marketh [shamar] all my paths ['orach].

12 Behold, in this thou art not just [tsadaq]: I will answer [`anah] thee, that God ['elowahh] is greater [rabah] than man ['enowsh]. KJV-Interlinear



8 'Surely you have spoken in my hearing, And I have heard the sound of your words: 9 'I am pure, without transgression; I am innocent and there is no guilt in me. 10 'Behold, He invents pretexts against me; He counts me as His enemy. 11 'He puts my feet in the stocks; He watches all my paths.' 12 'Behold, let me tell you, you are not right in this, For God is greater than man. NASB



In his attempted objectivity, Elihu is going to quote Jobs own words in order to prove Jobs error. And he says as much.


From his own hearing, Elihu has been present during the whole conversation. He has heard Job with his own ears. He did not hear anything second hand. He did not read about it in the news, nor see it on television. He did not receive these comments via hearsay or through any gossip sources.


The other three friends tried to use long standing experience, age, world wisdom to prove their points and to prove Jobs guilt. But, in his youth, Elihu will try being objective and use Jobs very own words to show Jobs error.


Unfortunately, this will be the flaw of Elihu's objectivity, because he will not quote Job exactly, he will take Jobs words out of context, he will ignore most of the bulk of Jobs discourse, and he will draw wrong inferences from Jobs words while ignoring almost everything else that Job had said.


These verses recite general and simple quotes, or near quotes from Jobs words. While the words in the English are almost exact, the words in the original are not.


Job did not say that he was 'clean,' or 'without transgression,' or 'innocent.' With respect to 'cleanness,' he had observed, 'Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?,' implying that all men were unclean, Job 14:4.


As for 'transgressions,' he said, 'I have sinned... Why dost thou not pardon my transgression, and take away mine iniquity?,' Job 7:20,21. 'Thou makest me to possess the iniquities of my youth,' Job 13:26.


Also, he asked the number of his sins, Job 13:23, and said that God kept his transgressions and iniquities sewn up and sealed in a bag, Job 14:17.


Concerning 'innocence,' the only observation that he had made was, 'I know that thou wilt not hold me innocent,' Job 9:28.


Job sorted out and distinguished his human characteristics from his spiritual characteristics with regard to his uprightness, his integrity, his righteousness, Job 12:4, 16:17, 23:7, 27:5-6, 31:5-40.


The quotes from verse ten and eleven are not exact quotes from Job 7:17-19, 10:3-6, 13:27, 16:9, and 19:11, and they also leave out all references to the context of those discourses of Jobs.


In short, Elihu began with eloquent words of respect and objectivity, and then settled down into a system of selectively harvesting comments of Jobs, isolating them from their context and then drawing conclusions as to Jobs present status.


Elihu overstated his case with micro-management of Jobs words and became just as unfair in his accusations of Job, as did the other three friends.


His combined youth and selectivity of Jobs words is a strong indication of his lack of spiritual maturity, and certainly his lack of objectivity.


In his attempt to act as a mediator, he failed merely because he did not listen to all that Job had said, nor did he fully understand the meaning of all that Job had said.


Anyone can go to church weekly, even daily, and sit there and listen and listen and listen, but if they lack fellowship status, if they lack concentration, if they are selective in what they agree to or in what they want to hear, then they will carry with them an inherent flaw in their spiritual life.


All too often we cover issues such as the illegal aliens, abortion, war, authority, politics and so forth, and generally I will get flooded with emails condemning me for such comments whatever they may be. By the way I also get numerous emails of thanks and appreciation too. So all is not bad.


But this just proves that people want to listen to only those things that they agree with. Unfortunately the Bible was not written to please you, but to condemn you and specifically, to condemn your thinking.


Whether you agree with it or not, is irrelevant. The Bible is here to train you in truth, and if given enough time, then the principles in the Bible (which are communicated by the Holy Spirit, by the way) will make themselves clear, and help you in your objectivity and thinking.


If I state something in error, then that will be apparent too, but that too is irrelevant. The Bible is here to train you in your thinking, and a part of that thinking is to listen, evaluate, test, and repeat it all again and again, for your entire life. Sooner or later, the truth will become apparent to you and that is the relevant objective of spiritual growth.


We all have opinions. The three friends had their opinions, Elihu had his opinions, Job had his opinions, and when we reach the conclusion of this book, then we will see that in the end, that all opinions become subordinate to those of God.


Jesus Christ controls history. We do not. We will make decisions everyday of our life. We will vote for candidates every so often. We will make good decisions and bad ones, but our will, when all is said and done, is irrelevant. What is important is that we continue to listen and learn and to keep an open mind regarding our own thoughts.


People will have an endless stream of opinions about us and what they think of us. That too is an area of testing for spiritual growth.


Note that, in all of these comments, Job is silent, polite and maintains his poise.

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End Of Lesson

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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