“Now a word came stealing to me.
My ear received the whisper of it.
Amid thoughts from visions of the night,
When deep sleep falls on mortals,
Dread came upon me.
Trembling made all my bones shake.
A spirit glided past my face.
The hair of my flesh bristled.
It stood still.
But I could not discern its appearance.
A form was before my eyes.
There was silence.
Then I heard a voice.
‘Can mortals be righteous before God?
Can human beings be pure before their Maker?
Even in his servants he puts no trust.
His angels he charges with error.
How much more those who live in houses of clay,
Whose foundation is in the dust,
Who are crushed like a moth.
Between morning and evening,
They are destroyed.
They perish forever without any regarding it.
If their tent-cord is plucked up within them,
They die devoid of wisdom.’”
Eliphaz had some kind of vision or heavenly revelation. It is not clear when this took place. Somehow this non-Israelite had a divine intervention in his life like a whisper at night in his ear while he was asleep. Dread came upon him as a spirit glided past his face and the hair on his body bristled or stood up. He could not see what this was, but he could hear a voice asking how can mortal human beings be righteous, upright, and innocent? If the angels or God’s servants make errors and are not trustworthy, how much more humans made of clay and dust. Man as clay and dust is reminiscent of Genesis, chapter 2. Between morning and evening, humans could be crushed like moths, completely destroyed. Humans can die without wisdom or a pre-mature death, if their tent-cord is plucked. This is the only biblical usage of a tent-cord. It must have been the thing that held the tent up so that if it was missing, the tent collapsed. So too with humans, death came when something essential was missing.