You Presume too much…

Read Job 34

Focus on verses 34-37

In today’s reading Elihu reminds me of a politician attempting to convince his constituents that he is more righteous than Job. He uses facts, which are true, or at least partially true to build a case that turns out to be not as true as the sum of all the parts might indicate. He quotes words that Job said but twists them into a context that makes it appear that Job is condemning God rather than complaining to Him. Elihu goes on to cite attributes of God, which are accurate in order to make himself look more righteous than Job.

There are accurate statements in parts of Elihu’s speech in terms of the character and nature of God, and even in regard to the character and condition of Job. Where he “darkens counsel and speaks without knowledge” is that he presumes to know the mind of God, which is ironically hypocritical, because he is doing exactly what he is accusing Job of doing. In his effort to vindicate God of what he perceives to be Job’s accusations he convicts himself.

His argument is not unlike the person who insists that it is intolerant to impose ones views on anyone else, not realizing that in his or her insistence they are imposing their own views. The case they are trying to make self-destructs.

It would seem from the context that despite the gravity of Elihu’s accusations it appears that he is to some extent pleading with Job to repent of what Elihu perceives as rebellion against God. As it turns out, when God speaks at the end, Elihu is humbled along with Job for his arrogance in presuming to know God’s mind and Job’s condition. Only God knows the thoughts of God and the hearts of men. Granted, He has revealed a great deal Himself to us through the scriptures, enough to help us understand that though His character is consistent, His thoughts and actions may not always make sense to us.

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About Dented-Knight

Peter Enns (aka - The Dented Knight) is a native of rural southern Manitoba, Canada. He is an ordained minister, the proprietor of LNE Web Services, father of four, grandfather of two, and life long husband of one. 
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