Who Is Elihu in The Book of Job?

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Are you thinking about who Elihu is in the Book of Job and what role he had to play? Elihu is one of the oldest commentators in the history of exegesis of the Book of Job. Presently, he’s becoming more famous as a subject of research on the Book of Job.

When it comes to his appearance, many of the exegetes take the view that his speech should have been added in the Book of Job at a late period because Elihu had been cited neither in the prologue nor in the epilogue of the original text.

On top of that, the language of his articulation is quite different than the three other friends of Job. Also, his speeches do not show the dialogue’s structure, and the main subject of Elihu’s speech differs from arguments put forward by his ancestors in the discussion. 

Who is Elihu, by the way?

The character of Elihu appears on the scene out of nowhere. He speaks several times and then disappears. God certainly vindicates Job and condemns Eliphaz, Zophar, and Bildad but says nothing about Elihu.

Casual Job readers barely notice this character. If they have the power not to jump from chapter two to chapter 38, their eyes varnish over long before they meet Elihu in chapter 32. The fall in a bog of poetry, words swirl together into an identical mire, and Elihu comes and goes while the readers are still gasping for more air. Others do not realize he is not one of the three friends mentioned in the book.

Apart from that, readers are told that Elihu is young, raving mad, and full of criticism for Job. Still, God claims that Job has spoken of me what’s right. What is all the fuss? That case must be closed.

Other than his lengthy speech, Elihu is never cited. Theorists simply consume this stuff because it helps them determine what was written down when. The more a story arc makes sense, the more likely it’s that the entire thing was written down simultaneously.

For instance, things are somewhat random in Job, such as the magic appearing and disappearing act of Elihu. Scholars are not so sure. Perhaps it was placed at a different time.

The short appearance of Elihu does more than simply help tweed-sporting scholars make estimations about dates. On top of that, it opens up the text to new theoretical possibilities. After all, he comes in, says his bit, and heads out, leaving it up to the readers to interpret his words.

What Does Elihu Said in the Book of Job?

Like the so-called friends of Job, Elihu claims that God has a power that is beyond man. However, he stands up for Job, as well. The ways of God are extremely mysterious to man—simply think weather patterns—so who is to say Job is guilty? Perhaps he is innocent but only being punished anyway.

His point is that Job must stop fixating on justice. When it comes down to it, Job is raising the wrong question of God.

You see, Elihu is a very tricky man, as well. His speech utilizes language and material from other speeches that you heard first. It is an ancient rhetorical trick: quote your opponent and utilize his material against him. Jon is the ideal target for that because his speeches pose questions.

For instance, Elihu in 35:1-4 quotes Job and then cites, “I’ll answer you,” before he makes his point. Quite fancy, isn’t it?

Uncertainty overflows over Elihu as he sounds like Zophar, Bildad, and Eliphaz, drawing the same conclusion. Remember that Job has sinned. However, as you penetrate the poetry, you see that what Elihu means by his decision is not what they suggest by it. His four speeches ring along with excellent truth badly required by any naive sufferer.

  • Righteous living is not pointless, even though people are insignificant next to God
  • God hasn’t been silent, but he speaks with your pain
  • You are in no place to criticize God. You need to remember how to fear him
  • God is not unjust, but he will strike the wicked eventually

God also reinforces the fourth point of Elihu with some of the most fear-inducing and aggressive words in all the Bible. May you repent justifying yourself and remember to fear him at all times.

The observations show that the speeches of Elihu are a vital part of the Book of Job, contrary to the view of most critics who says that Chapters 32 to 37 are not an original part of the book and were included later after the other chapters were made.

The speech of Elihu does not precisely uncover the purpose of the Book of Job. Nevertheless, it shows what the book is not. If Job does need a theodicy, the book is skeptical of such a thing.