Job Complains of God's Indifference to Wickedness
24 1 " Why are times not stored up by the Almighty , And why do those who know Him not see His days ? 2 "Some remove the landmarks ; They seize and devour flocks . 3 "They drive away the donkeys of the orphans ; They take the widow's ox for a pledge . 4 "They push the needy aside from the road ; The poor of the land are made to hide themselves altogether . 5 "Behold , as wild donkeys in the wilderness They go forth seeking food in their activity , As bread for their children in the desert . 6 "They harvest their fodder in the field And glean the vineyard of the wicked . 7 " They spend the night naked , without clothing , And have no covering against the cold . 8 "They are wet with the mountain rains And hug the rock for want of a shelter . 9 "Others snatch the orphan from the breast , And against the poor they take a pledge . 10 "They cause the poor to go about naked without clothing , And they take away the sheaves from the hungry . 11 "Within the walls they produce oil ; They tread wine presses but thirst . 12 "From the city men groan , And the souls of the wounded cry out; Yet God does not pay attention to folly .
13 "Others have been with those who rebel against the light ; They do not want to know its ways Nor abide in its paths . 14 "The murderer arises at dawn ; He kills the poor and the needy , And at night he is as a thief . 15 "The eye of the adulterer waits for the twilight , Saying , 'No eye will see me.' And he disguises his face . 16 "In the dark they dig into houses , They shut themselves up by day ; They do not know the light . 17 "For the morning is the same to him as thick darkness , For he is familiar with the terrors of thick darkness .
18 "They are insignificant on the surface of the water ; Their portion is cursed on the earth . They do not turn toward the vineyards . 19 "Drought and heat consume the snow waters , So does Sheol those who have sinned . 20 "A mother will forget him; The worm feeds sweetly till he is no longer remembered . And wickedness will be broken like a tree . 21 "He wrongs the barren woman And does no good for the widow . 22 "But He drags off the valiant by His power ; He rises , but no one has assurance of life . 23 "He provides them with security , and they are supported ; And His eyes are on their ways . 24 "They are exalted a little while , then they are gone ; Moreover, they are brought low and like everything gathered up; Even like the heads of grain they are cut off . 25 "Now if it is not so , who can prove me a liar , And make my speech worthless ?"
Bildad Denies That Man Can Be Justified with God
25 1 Then Bildad the Shuhite answered , 2 " Dominion and awe belong to Him Who establishes peace in His heights . 3 "Is there any number to His troops ? And upon whom does His light not rise ? 4 "How then can a man be just with God ? Or how can he be clean who is born of woman ? 5 "If even the moon has no brightness And the stars are not pure in His sight , 6 How much e less man , that maggot , And the son of man , that worm !"
Job Declares God's Sovereignty
26 1 Then Job responded e , 2 "What a help you are to the weak ! How you have saved the arm without strength ! 3 "What counsel you have given to one without wisdom ! What helpful insight you have abundantly provided ! 4 "To whom have you uttered words ? And whose spirit was expressed through you?
5 "The departed spirits tremble Under the waters and their inhabitants . 6 "Naked is Sheol before Him, And Abaddon has no covering . 7 "He stretches out the north over empty space And hangs the earth on nothing . 8 "He wraps up the waters in His clouds , And the cloud does not burst under them. 9 "He obscures the face of the full moon And spreads His cloud over it. 10 "He has inscribed a circle on the surface of the waters At the boundary of light and darkness . 11 "The pillars of heaven tremble And are amazed at His rebuke . 12 "He quieted the sea with His power , And by His understanding He shattered Rahab . 13 "By His breath the heavens are cleared ; His hand has pierced the fleeing serpent . 14 "Behold , these are the fringes of His ways ; And how faint a word we hear of Him! But His mighty thunder , who can understand ?"
Job Describes the Portion of the Wicked
27 1 Then Job continued e his discourse and said , 2 "As God lives , who has taken away my right , And the Almighty , who has embittered my soul , 3 For as long e as life is in me, And the breath of God is in my nostrils , 4 My lips certainly will not speak unjustly , Nor will my tongue mutter deceit . 5 "Far be it from me that I should declare you right ; Till I die I will not put away my integrity from me. 6 "I hold fast my righteousness and will not let it go . My heart does not reproach any of my days .
7 "May my enemy be as the wicked And my opponent as the unjust . 8 "For what is the hope of the godless when he is cut off , When God requires his life ? 9 "Will God hear his cry When distress comes upon him? 10 "Will he take delight in the Almighty ? Will he call on God at all times ?
11 "I will instruct you in the power of God ; What is with the Almighty I will not conceal . 12 "Behold , all of you have seen it; Why then do you act foolishly ? 13 "This is the portion of a wicked man from God , And the inheritance which tyrants receive from the Almighty . 14 "Though his sons are many , they are destined for the sword ; And his descendants will not be satisfied with bread . 15 "His survivors will be buried because of the plague , And their widows will not be able to weep . 16 "Though he piles up silver like dust And prepares garments as plentiful as the clay , 17 He may prepare it, but the just will wear it And the innocent will divide the silver . 18 "He has built his house like the spider's web, Or as a hut which the watchman has made . 19 "He lies down rich , but never again ; He opens his eyes , and it is no longer . 20 " Terrors overtake him like a flood ; A tempest steals him away in the night . 21 "The east wind carries him away, and he is gone , For it whirls him away from his place . 22 "For it will hurl at him without sparing ; He will surely try to flee from its power . 23 "Men will clap their hands at him And will hiss him from his place .
Man's Quest for Wisdom
28 1 "Surely there is a mine for silver And a place where they refine gold . 2 "Iron is taken from the dust , And copper is smelted from rock . 3 "Man puts an end to darkness , And to the farthest limit he searches out The rock in gloom and deep shadow . 4 "He sinks a shaft far from habitation , Forgotten by the foot ; They hang and swing to and fro far from men . 5 "The earth , from it comes food , And underneath it is turned up as fire . 6 "Its rocks are the source of sapphires , And its dust contains gold . 7 "The path no bird of prey knows , Nor has the falcon's eye caught sight of it. 8 "The proud beasts have not trodden it, Nor has the fierce lion passed over it. 9 "He puts his hand on the flint ; He overturns the mountains at the base . 10 "He hews out channels through the rocks , And his eye sees anything precious . 11 "He dams up the streams from flowing , And what is hidden he brings out to the light . 12 "But where can wisdom be found ? And where is the place of understanding ? 13 " Man does not know its value , Nor is it found in the land of the living .
14 "The deep says , 'It is not in me'; And the sea says , 'It is not with me.' 15 " Pure gold cannot be given in exchange for it, Nor can silver be weighed as its price . 16 "It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir , In precious onyx , or sapphire . 17 " Gold or glass cannot equal it, Nor can it be exchanged for articles of fine gold . 18 "Coral and crystal are not to be mentioned ; And the acquisition of wisdom is above that of pearls . 19 "The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it, Nor can it be valued in pure gold .
20 " Where then does wisdom come from? And where is the place of understanding ? 21 "Thus it is hidden from the eyes of all living And concealed from the birds of the sky . 22 " Abaddon and Death say , 'With our ears we have heard a report of it.' 23 " God understands its way , And He knows its place . 24 "For He looks to the ends of the earth And sees everything under the heavens . 25 "When He imparted weight to the wind And meted out the waters by measure , 26 When He set a limit for the rain And a course for the thunderbolt e , 27 Then He saw it and declared it; He established it and also searched it out. 28 "And to man He said , 'Behold , the fear of the Lord , that is wisdom ; And to depart from evil is understanding .' "