Lest ye should say, we have found out wisdom
They were left to themselves, and not directed to take the proper methods of convincing Job, and answering his arguments; lest they should be wise in their own conceits, and attribute too much to themselves; or Elihu told them this, that they had not convicted Job, though they had condemned him, nor answered his arguments, though they had left off speaking; and this he was obliged to say, and that for the reason before observed: for all wisdom is of God, and not to be found out or acquired by men; not natural wisdom, that is not of men, but of God, and especially supernatural wisdom, or the knowledge of divine and spiritual things, and the reason of God's dealings with the sons of men in the different manner he does, see ( Job 28:12 Job 28:13 Job 28:20 Job 28:28 ) ;
God thrusteth him down, not man:
some think Elihu says this in reference to himself, whom God would make use of as an instrument to convince Job and answer his arguments; and that he would ascribe this not to himself, but to God; they took a natural way to convince Job, which failed, that they might not be proud of their own wisdom; he should take a more divine and spiritual method, and, if he succeeded, he should give all the glory to God, and ascribe nothing to himself: as in the conviction and conversion of a sinner, though ministers are instruments, it is not by might or power of men, but by the Spirit of the Lord of Hosts; it is God that thrusts down man from a vain opinion he has of himself; that convinces him of sin, that takes him off of his own righteousness, and humbles him, and lays him low at his feet: but they rather seem to be the words of Job's friends, as related by Elihu; and the sense is in connection with the former, either that they found it was the wisest method they could take with Job to be silent, and leave him to himself, lest they should add to his afflict; on; to which Jarchi inclines, who paraphrases it,
``we found wisdom by our silence, that we may not provoke him any more;''which, if their sense, shows more tenderness and compassion than they had hitherto expressed, and answers pretty much to the advice given ( 2 Corinthians 2:6 2 Corinthians 2:7 ) ; or else their meaning is, that they found it the best and wisest way to leave him with God, he being so obstinate and incorrigible that none but God could move him; it was not in the power of men, or of words used by men, to make him sensible of things; or rather the meaning is, Elihu was obliged to tell them, that none of them had convinced Job, or answered his arguments, lest they should say, we have found out a wise and strong argument, proving the charge brought against him, that he must be a wicked man and an hypocrite, since God has so sorely afflicted him, and thrust him down from all his grandeur and dignity; which no man could ever have done, and God would not, if he had not been the man we suppose him to be; now Elihu's view is to observe to them, that there was nothing in this argument convincing, in which they imagined so much wisdom lay. Job's afflictions, indeed, were of God, and not men; and which he often owns himself; but this was no proof or argument of his being a wicked man: Mr. Broughton renders the words,
``the Omnipotent doth toss him, not man.''