Job 34: God is Just and Job is Wrong

Surely God will never do wickedly, Nor will the Almighty pervert justice… Should one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn Him who is most just? Job 34:12, 17

‘Job speaks without knowledge, His words are without wisdom.Oh, that Job were tried to the utmost, Because his answers are like those of wicked men! For he adds rebellion to his sin; He claps his hands among us, And multiplies his words against God.”  Job 34:35-37

Elihu Proclaims God’s Justice

Elihu does rebuke Job. Calling God unfair is hardly a valid solution to the problem of suffering (34:10)!

10  “Therefore listen to me, you men of understanding: Far be it from God to do wickedness, And from the Almighty to commit iniquity

34:11, 12 Surely God: Perhaps in response to Job’s charges in 9:22-24, Elihu defends God’s impartiality according to the traditional retribution dogma: God will justly punish the wicked. Elihu defends God’s justice by siding with Bildad (8:3) against Job (19:6).

11  For He repays man according to his work, And makes man to find a reward according to his way. 12  Surely God will never do wickedly, Nor will the Almighty pervert justice

34:17 The two rhetorical questions in this verse seem to rephrase Job’s complaints of 9:14-31 and 24:1-17 in order to refute them. Will you condemn Him who is most just: The second question anticipates the Lord’s own rebuke of Job in 40:8.

17  Should one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn Him who is most just?

34:34-37 Elihu’s conclusion mixes sound analysis with an unfair representation of Job’s position. His statement that Job’s words are without knowledge anticipates the Lord’s own words (38:2).

34  “Men of understanding say to me, Wise men who listen to me: 35  ‘Job speaks without knowledge, His words are without wisdom.’ 36  Oh, that Job were tried to the utmost, Because his answers are like those of wicked men! 37  For he adds rebellion to his sin; He claps his hands among us, And multiplies his words against God.”

⇒ Elihu defends God and accuses Job at the same time.  We should not use God to accuse other people.  God will not defend our position.