Considering silently


Dr. Kim Riddlebarger continues the commentary on Job 34:

God gives all life. God judges with perfect righteousness. He knows all the facts. He does nothing capriciously or improperly. Job needs to consider this matter carefully, since he claims to believe this, as do his friends.

To even question God’s goodness is folly. In verse 29 Elihu asks, “But if he remains silent, who can condemn him? If he hides his face, who can see him? Yet he is over man and nation alike, to keep a godless man from ruling, from laying snares for the people. `Suppose a man says to God, ‘I am guilty but will offend no more. Teach me what I cannot see; if I have done wrong, I will not do so again.’ Should God then reward you on your terms, when you refuse to repent? You must decide, not I; so tell me what you know. `Men of understanding declare, wise men who hear me say to me, ‘Job speaks without knowledge; his words lack insight.’ Oh, that Job might be tested to the utmost for answering like a wicked man! To his sin he adds rebellion; scornfully he claps his hands among us and multiplies his words against God.” Notice that Job remains silent. He does not reply. He realizes he may have said too much and overstated his case. His words come close to sounding like those of an angry pagan.