Job Despairs of God’s Dealings
10 “I loathe my own life;
I will give full vent to my complaint;
I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.
2 “I will say to God, ‘Do not condemn me;
Let me know why You contend with me.
3 ‘Is it right for You indeed to oppress,
To reject the labor of Your hands,
And to look favorably on the schemes of the wicked?
4 ‘Have You eyes of flesh?
Or do You see as a man sees?
5 ‘Are Your days as the days of a mortal,
Or Your years as man’s years,
6 That You should seek for my guilt
And search after my sin?
7 ‘According to Your knowledge I am indeed not guilty,
Yet there is no deliverance from Your hand.
8 ‘Your hands fashioned and made me altogether,
And would You destroy me?
9 ‘Remember now, that You have made me as clay;
And would You turn me into dust again?
10 ‘Did You not pour me out like milk
And curdle me like cheese;
11 Clothe me with skin and flesh,
And knit me together with bones and sinews?
12 ‘You have granted me life and lovingkindness;
And Your care has preserved my spirit.
13 ‘Yet these things You have concealed in Your heart;
I know that this is within You:
14 If I sin, then You would take note of me,
And would not acquit me of my guilt.
15 ‘If I am wicked, woe to me!
And if I am righteous, I dare not lift up my head.
I am sated with disgrace and conscious of my misery.
16 ‘Should my head be lifted up, You would hunt me like a lion;
And again You would show Your power against me.
17 ‘You renew Your witnesses against me
And increase Your anger toward me;
Hardship after hardship is with me.
18 ‘Why then have You brought me out of the womb?
Would that I had died and no eye had seen me!
19 ‘I should have been as though I had not been,
Carried from womb to tomb.’
20 “Would He not let my few days alone?
Withdraw from me that I may have a little cheer
21 Before I go—and I shall not return—
To the land of darkness and deep shadow,
22 The land of utter gloom as darkness itself,
Of deep shadow without order,
And which shines as the darkness.”
Zophar Rebukes Job
11 Then Zophar the Naamathite answered,
2 “Shall a multitude of words go unanswered,
And a talkative man be acquitted?
3 “Shall your boasts silence men?
And shall you scoff and none rebuke?
4 “For you have said, ‘My teaching is pure,
And I am innocent in your eyes.’
5 “But would that God might speak,
And open His lips against you,
6 And show you the secrets of wisdom!
For sound wisdom has two sides.
Know then that God forgets a part of your iniquity.
7 “Can you discover the depths of God?
Can you discover the limits of the Almighty?
8 “They are high as the heavens, what can you do?
Deeper than Sheol, what can you know?
9 “Its measure is longer than the earth
And broader than the sea.
10 “If He passes by or shuts up,
Or calls an assembly, who can restrain Him?
11 “For He knows false men,
And He sees iniquity without investigating.
12 “An idiot will become intelligent
When the foal of a wild donkey is born a man.
13 “If you would direct your heart right
And spread out your hand to Him,
14 If iniquity is in your hand, put it far away,
And do not let wickedness dwell in your tents;
15 “Then, indeed, you could lift up your face without moral defect,
And you would be steadfast and not fear.
16 “For you would forget your trouble,
As waters that have passed by, you would remember it.
17 “Your life would be brighter than noonday;
Darkness would be like the morning.
18 “Then you would trust, because there is hope;
And you would look around and rest securely.
19 “You would lie down and none would disturb you,
And many would entreat your favor.
20 “But the eyes of the wicked will fail,
And there will be no escape for them;
And their hope is to breathe their last.”
Job Chides His Accusers
12 Then Job responded,
2 “Truly then you are the people,
And with you wisdom will die!
3 “But I have intelligence as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
And who does not know such things as these?
4 “I am a joke to my friends,
The one who called on God and He answered him;
The just and blameless man is a joke.
5 “He who is at ease holds calamity in contempt,
As prepared for those whose feet slip.
6 “The tents of the destroyers prosper,
And those who provoke God are secure,
Whom God brings into their power.
7 “But now ask the beasts, and let them teach you;
And the birds of the heavens, and let them tell you.
8 “Or speak to the earth, and let it teach you;
And let the fish of the sea declare to you.
9 “Who among all these does not know
That the hand of the Lord has done this,
10 In whose hand is the life of every living thing,
And the breath of all mankind?
11 “Does not the ear test words,
As the palate tastes its food?
12 “Wisdom is with aged men,
Withlong life is understanding.
Job Speaks of the Power of God
13 “With Him are wisdom and might;
To Him belong counsel and understanding.
14 “Behold, He tears down, and it cannot be rebuilt;
He imprisons a man, and there can be no release.
15 “Behold, He restrains the waters, and they dry up;
And He sends them out, and they inundate the earth.
16 “With Him are strength and sound wisdom,
The misled and the misleader belong to Him.
17 “He makes counselors walk barefoot
And makes fools of judges.
18 “He loosens the bond of kings
And binds their loins with a girdle.
19 “He makes priests walk barefoot
And overthrows the secure ones.
20 “He deprives the trusted ones of speech
And takes away the discernment of the elders.
21 “He pours contempt on nobles
And loosens the belt of the strong.
22 “He reveals mysteries from the darkness
And brings the deep darkness into light.
23 “He makes the nations great, then destroys them;
He enlarges the nations, then leads them away.
24 “He deprives of intelligence the chiefs of the earth’s people
And makes them wander in a pathless waste.
25 “They grope in darkness with no light,
And He makes them stagger like a drunken man.
Job Says His Friends’ Proverbs Are Ashes
13 “Behold, my eye has seen all this,
My ear has heard and understood it.
2 “What you know I also know;
I am not inferior to you.
3 “But I would speak to the Almighty,
And I desire to argue with God.
4 “But you smear with lies;
You are all worthless physicians.
5 “O that you would be completely silent,
And that it would become your wisdom!
6 “Please hear my argument
And listen to the contentions of my lips.
7 “Will you speak what is unjust for God,
And speak what is deceitful for Him?
8 “Will you show partiality for Him?
Will you contend for God?
9 “Will it be well when He examines you?
Or will you deceive Him as one deceives a man?
10 “He will surely reprove you
If you secretly show partiality.
11 “Will not His majesty terrify you,
And the dread of Him fall on you?
12 “Your memorable sayings are proverbs of ashes,
Your defenses are defenses of clay.
Job Is Sure He Will Be Vindicated
13 “Be silent before me so that I may speak;
Then let come on me what may.
14 “Why should I take my flesh in my teeth
And put my life in my hands?
15 “Though He slay me,
I will hope in Him.
Nevertheless I will argue my ways before Him.
16 “This also will be my salvation,
For a godless man may not come before His presence.
17 “Listen carefully to my speech,
And let my declaration fill your ears.
18 “Behold now, I have prepared my case;
I know that I will be vindicated.
19 “Who will contend with me?
For then I would be silent and die.
20 “Only two things do not do to me,
Then I will not hide from Your face:
21 Remove Your hand from me,
And let not the dread of You terrify me.
22 “Then call, and I will answer;
Or let me speak, then reply to me.
23 “How many are my iniquities and sins?
Make known to me my rebellion and my sin.
24 “Why do You hide Your face
And consider me Your enemy?
25 “Will You cause a driven leaf to tremble?
Or will You pursue the dry chaff?
26 “For You write bitter things against me
And make me to inherit the iniquities of my youth.
27 “You put my feet in the stocks
And watch all my paths;
You set a limit for the soles of my feet,
28 While I am decaying like a rotten thing,
Like a garment that is moth-eaten.
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Scripture quotations taken from the NASB © The Lockman Foundation (www.lockman.org)