V. The Speeches of Elihu (32:1-37:24)
Elihu’s First Speech
32:1 So these three men refused to answer Job further, because he was righteous in his own eyes. 32:2 Then Elihu son of Barakel the Buzite, of the family of Ram, became very angry. He was angry with Job for justifying himself rather than God. 32:3 With Job’s three friends he was also angry, because they could not find an answer, and so declared Job guilty. 32:4 Now Elihu had waited before speaking to Job, because the others were older than he was. 32:5 But when Elihu saw that the three men had no further reply, he became very angry.
Elihu Claims Wisdom
32:6 So Elihu son of Barakel the Buzite spoke up:
“I am young, but you are elderly;
that is why I was fearful,
and afraid to explain to you what I know.
32:7 I said to myself, ‘Age should speak,
and length of years should make wisdom known.’
32:8 But it is a spirit in people,
the breath of the Almighty,
that makes them understand.
32:9 It is not the aged who are wise,
nor old men who understand what is right.
32:10 Therefore I say, ‘Listen to me.
I, even I, will explain what I know.’
32:11 Look, I waited for you to speak;
I listened closely to your wise thoughts,while you were searching for words.
32:12 Now I was paying you close attention,
yet there was no one proving Job wrong,
not one of you was answering his statements!
32:13 So do not say, ‘We have found wisdom!
God will refute him, not man!’
32:14 Job has not directed his words to me,
and so I will not reply to him with your arguments.
Job’s Friends Failed to Answer
32:15 “They are dismayed and cannot answer any more;
they have nothing left to say.
32:16 And I have waited. But because they do not speak,
because they stand there and answer no more,
32:17 I too will answer my part,
I too will explain what I know.
32:18 For I am full of words,
and the spirit within me constrains me.
32:19 Inside I am like wine which has no outlet,
like new wineskins ready to burst!
32:20 I will speak, so that I may find relief;
I will open my lips, so that I may answer.
32:21 I will not show partiality to anyone,
nor will I confer a title on any man.
32:22 for I do not know how to give honorary titles,
if I did, my Creator would quickly do away with me.