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Job 1:6–12:6

6One day the heavenly beings came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. 7The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the Lord, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” 8The Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil.” 9Then Satan answered the Lord, “Does Job fear God for nothing? 10Have you not put a fence around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11But stretch out your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” 12The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, all that he has is in your power; only do not stretch out your hand against him!” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.

13One day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in the eldest brother’s house, 14a messenger came to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were feeding beside them, 15and the Sabeans fell on them and carried them off, and killed the servants with the edge of the sword; I alone have escaped to tell you.” 16While he was still speaking, another came and said, “The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants, and consumed them; I alone have escaped to tell you.” 17While he was still speaking, another came and said, “The Chaldeans formed three columns, made a raid on the camels and carried them off, and killed the servants with the edge of the sword; I alone have escaped to tell you.” 18While he was still speaking, another came and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house, 19and suddenly a great wind came across the desert, struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people, and they are dead; I alone have escaped to tell you.”

20Then Job arose, tore his robe, shaved his head, and fell on the ground and worshiped. 21He said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there; the Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” 22In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong-doing.

2One day the heavenly beings came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord. 2The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the Lord, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” 3The Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil. He still persists in his integrity, although you incited me against him, to destroy him for no reason.” 4Then Satan answered the Lord, “Skin for skin! All that people have they will give to save their lives. 5But stretch out your hand now and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face.” 6The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, he is in your power; only spare his life.”

7So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and inflicted loathsome sores on Job from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. 8Job took a potsherd with which to scrape himself, and sat among the ashes. 9Then his wife said to him, “Do you still persist in your integrity? Curse God, and die.” 10But he said to her, “You speak as any foolish woman would speak. Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.

11Now when Job’s three friends heard of all these troubles that had come upon him, each of them set out from his home—Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. They met together to go and console and comfort him. 12When they saw him from a distance, they did not recognize him, and they raised their voices and wept aloud; they tore their robes and threw dust in the air upon their heads. 13They sat with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word to him, for they saw that his suffering was very great.

3After this Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth. 2Job said: 3“Let the day perish in which I was born, and the night that said, ‘A man-child is conceived.’ 4Let that day be darkness! May God above not seek it, or light shine on it. 5Let gloom and deep darkness claim it. Let clouds settle upon it; let the blackness of the day terrify it. 6That night—let thick darkness seize it! let it not rejoice among the days of the year; let it not come into the number of the months. 7Yes, let that night be barren; let no joyful cry be heard in it. 8Let those curse it who curse the Sea, those who are skilled to rouse up Leviathan. 9Let the stars of its dawn be dark; let it hope for light, but have none; may it not see the eyelids of the morning— 10because it did not shut the doors of my mother’s womb, and hide trouble from my eyes.

11“Why did I not die at birth, come forth from the womb and expire? 12Why were there knees to receive me, or breasts for me to suck? 13Now I would be lying down and quiet; I would be asleep; then I would be at rest 14with kings and counselors of the earth who rebuild ruins for themselves, 15or with princes who have gold, who fill their houses with silver. 16Or why was I not buried like a stillborn child, like an infant that never sees the light? 17There the wicked cease from troubling, and there the weary are at rest. 18There the prisoners are at ease together; they do not hear the voice of the taskmaster. 19The small and the great are there, and the slaves are free from their masters.

20“Why is light given to one in misery, and life to the bitter in soul, 21who long for death, but it does not come, and dig for it more than for hidden treasures; 22who rejoice exceedingly, and are glad when they find the grave? 23Why is light given to one who cannot see the way, whom God has fenced in? 24For my sighing comes like my bread, and my groanings are poured out like water. 25Truly the thing that I fear comes upon me, and what I dread befalls me. 26I am not at ease, nor am I quiet; I have no rest; but trouble comes.”

4Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered: 2“If one ventures a word with you, will you be offended? But who can keep from speaking? 3See, you have instructed many; you have strengthened the weak hands. 4Your words have supported those who were stumbling, and you have made firm the feeble knees. 5But now it has come to you, and you are impatient; it touches you, and you are dismayed. 6Is not your fear of God your confidence, and the integrity of your ways your hope?

7“Think now, who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off? 8As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same. 9By the breath of God they perish, and by the blast of his anger they are consumed. 10The roar of the lion, the voice of the fierce lion, and the teeth of the young lions are broken. 11The strong lion perishes for lack of prey, and the whelps of the lioness are scattered.

12“Now a word came stealing to me, my ear received the whisper of it. 13Amid thoughts from visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on mortals, 14dread came upon me, and trembling, which made all my bones shake. 15A spirit glided past my face; the hair of my flesh bristled. 16It stood still, but I could not discern its appearance. A form was before my eyes; there was silence, then I heard a voice: 17‘Can mortals be righteous before God? Can human beings be pure before their Maker? 18Even in his servants he puts no trust, and his angels he charges with error; 19how much more those who live in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, who are crushed like a moth. 20Between morning and evening they are destroyed; they perish forever without any regarding it. 21Their tent-cord is plucked up within them, and they die devoid of wisdom.’

5“Call now; is there anyone who will answer you? To which of the holy ones will you turn? 2Surely vexation kills the fool, and jealousy slays the simple. 3I have seen fools taking root, but suddenly I cursed their dwelling. 4Their children are far from safety, they are crushed in the gate, and there is no one to deliver them. 5The hungry eat their harvest, and they take it even out of the thorns; and the thirsty pant after their wealth.

6For misery does not come from the earth, nor does trouble sprout from the ground; 7but human beings are born to trouble just as sparks fly upward. 8“As for me, I would seek God, and to God I would commit my cause. 9He does great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number. 10He gives rain on the earth and sends waters on the fields; 11he sets on high those who are lowly, and those who mourn are lifted to safety. 12He frustrates the devices of the crafty, so that their hands achieve no success. 13He takes the wise in their own craftiness; and the schemes of the wily are brought to a quick end. 14They meet with darkness in the daytime, and grope at noonday as in the night. 15But he saves the needy from the sword of their mouth, from the hand of the mighty. 16So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth.

17“How happy is the one whom God reproves; therefore do not despise the discipline of the Almighty. 18For he wounds, but he binds up; he strikes, but his hands heal. 19He will deliver you from six troubles; in seven no harm shall touch you. 20In famine he will redeem you from death, and in war from the power of the sword. 21You shall be hidden from the scourge of the tongue, and shall not fear destruction when it comes. 22At destruction and famine you shall laugh, and shall not fear the wild animals of the earth. 23For you shall be in league with the stones of the field, and the wild animals shall be at peace with you. 24You shall know that your tent is safe, you shall inspect your fold and miss nothing. 25You shall know that your descendants will be many, and your offspring like the grass of the earth. 26You shall come to your grave in ripe old age, as a shock of grain comes up to the threshing floor in its season. 27See, we have searched this out; it is true. Hear, and know it for yourself.”

6Then Job answered: 2“O that my vexation were weighed, and all my calamity laid in the balances! 3For then it would be heavier than the sand of the sea; therefore my words have been rash. 4For the arrows of the Almighty are in me; my spirit drinks their poison; the terrors of God are arrayed against me. 5Does the wild ass bray over its grass, or the ox low over its fodder? 6Can that which is tasteless be eaten without salt, or is there any flavor in the juice of mallows? 7My appetite refuses to touch them; they are like food that is loathsome to me.

8“O that I might have my request, and that God would grant my desire; 9that it would please God to crush me, that he would let loose his hand and cut me off! 10This would be my consolation; I would even exult in unrelenting pain; for I have not denied the words of the Holy One. 11What is my strength, that I should wait? And what is my end, that I should be patient? 12Is my strength the strength of stones, or is my flesh bronze? 13In truth I have no help in me, and any resource is driven from me.

14“Those who withhold kindness from a friend forsake the fear of the Almighty. 15My companions are treacherous like a torrent-bed, like freshets that pass away, 16that run dark with ice, turbid with melting snow. 17In time of heat they disappear; when it is hot, they vanish from their place. 18The caravans turn aside from their course; they go up into the waste, and perish. 19The caravans of Tema look, the travelers of Sheba hope. 20They are disappointed because they were confident; they come there and are confounded. 21Such you have now become to me; you see my calamity, and are afraid.

22Have I said, ‘Make me a gift’? Or, ‘From your wealth offer a bribe for me’? 23Or, ‘Save me from an opponent’s hand’? Or, ‘Ransom me from the hand of oppressors’? 24“Teach me, and I will be silent; make me understand how I have gone wrong. 25How forceful are honest words! But your reproof, what does it reprove? 26Do you think that you can reprove words, as if the speech of the desperate were wind? 27You would even cast lots over the orphan, and bargain over your friend. 28“But now, be pleased to look at me; for I will not lie to your face. 29Turn, I pray, let no wrong be done. Turn now, my vindication is at stake. 30Is there any wrong on my tongue? Cannot my taste discern calamity?

7“Do not human beings have a hard service on earth, and are not their days like the days of a laborer? 2Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like laborers who look for their wages, 3so I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me. 4When I lie down I say, ‘When shall I rise?’ But the night is long, and I am full of tossing until dawn. 5My flesh is clothed with worms and dirt; my skin hardens, then breaks out again. 6My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and come to their end without hope.

7“Remember that my life is a breath; my eye will never again see good. 8The eye that beholds me will see me no more; while your eyes are upon me, I shall be gone. 9As the cloud fades and vanishes, so those who go down to Sheol do not come up; 10they return no more to their houses, nor do their places know them any more. 11“Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. 12Am I the Sea, or the Dragon, that you set a guard over me? 13When I say, ‘My bed will comfort me, my couch will ease my complaint,’ 14then you scare me with dreams and terrify me with visions, 15so that I would choose strangling and death rather than this body. 16I loathe my life; I would not live forever. Let me alone, for my days are a breath.

17What are human beings, that you make so much of them, that you set your mind on them, 18visit them every morning, test them every moment? 19Will you not look away from me for a while, let me alone until I swallow my spittle? 20If I sin, what do I do to you, you watcher of humanity? Why have you made me your target? Why have I become a burden to you? 21Why do you not pardon my transgression and take away my iniquity? For now I shall lie in the earth; you will seek me, but I shall not be.”

8Then Bildad the Shuhite answered: 2“How long will you say these things, and the words of your mouth be a great wind? 3Does God pervert justice? Or does the Almighty pervert the right? 4If your children sinned against him, he delivered them into the power of their transgression. 5If you will seek God and make supplication to the Almighty, 6if you are pure and upright, surely then he will rouse himself for you and restore to you your rightful place. 7Though your beginning was small, your latter days will be very great.

8“For inquire now of bygone generations, and consider what their ancestors have found; 9for we are but of yesterday, and we know nothing, for our days on earth are but a shadow. 10Will they not teach you and tell you and utter words out of their understanding? 11“Can papyrus grow where there is no marsh? Can reeds flourish where there is no water? 12While yet in flower and not cut down, they wither before any other plant. 13Such are the paths of all who forget God; the hope of the godless shall perish. 14Their confidence is gossamer, a spider’s house their trust. 15If one leans against its house, it will not stand; if one lays hold of it, it will not endure. 16The wicked thrive before the sun, and their shoots spread over the garden. 17Their roots twine around the stoneheap; they live among the rocks. 18If they are destroyed from their place, then it will deny them, saying, ‘I have never seen you.’ 19See, these are their happy ways, and out of the earth still others will spring.

20“See, God will not reject a blameless person, nor take the hand of evildoers. 21He will yet fill your mouth with laughter, and your lips with shouts of joy. 22Those who hate you will be clothed with shame, and the tent of the wicked will be no more.”

9Then Job answered: 2“Indeed I know that this is so; but how can a mortal be just before God? 3If one wished to contend with him, one could not answer him once in a thousand. 4He is wise in heart, and mighty in strength—who has resisted him, and succeeded?— 5he who removes mountains, and they do not know it, when he overturns them in his anger; 6who shakes the earth out of its place, and its pillars tremble; 7who commands the sun, and it does not rise; who seals up the stars; 8who alone stretched out the heavens and trampled the waves of the Sea; 9who made the Bear and Orion, the Pleiades and the chambers of the south; 10who does great things beyond understanding, and marvelous things without number. 11Look, he passes by me, and I do not see him; he moves on, but I do not perceive him. 12He snatches away; who can stop him? Who will say to him, ‘What are you doing?’ 13“God will not turn back his anger; the helpers of Rahab bowed beneath him.

14How then can I answer him, choosing my words with him? 15Though I am innocent, I cannot answer him; I must appeal for mercy to my accuser. 16If I summoned him and he answered me, I do not believe that he would listen to my voice. 17For he crushes me with a tempest, and multiplies my wounds without cause; 18he will not let me get my breath, but fills me with bitterness. 19If it is a contest of strength, he is the strong one! If it is a matter of justice, who can summon him? 20Though I am innocent, my own mouth would condemn me; though I am blameless, he would prove me perverse. 21I am blameless; I do not know myself; I loathe my life.

22It is all one; therefore I say, he destroys both the blameless and the wicked. 23When disaster brings sudden death, he mocks at the calamity of the innocent. 24The earth is given into the hand of the wicked; he covers the eyes of its judges— if it is not he, who then is it?

25“My days are swifter than a runner; they flee away, they see no good. 26They go by like skiffs of reed, like an eagle swooping on the prey. 27If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint; I will put off my sad countenance and be of good cheer,’ 28I become afraid of all my suffering, for I know you will not hold me innocent. 29I shall be condemned; why then do I labor in vain? 30If I wash myself with soap and cleanse my hands with lye, 31yet you will plunge me into filth, and my own clothes will abhor me. 32For he is not a mortal, as I am, that I might answer him, that we should come to trial together. 33There is no umpire between us, who might lay his hand on us both. 34If he would take his rod away from me, and not let dread of him terrify me, 35then I would speak without fear of him, for I know I am not what I am thought to be.

10“I loathe my life; I will give free utterance to my complaint; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul. 2I will say to God, Do not condemn me; let me know why you contend against me. 3Does it seem good to you to oppress, to despise the work of your hands and favor the schemes of the wicked? 4Do you have eyes of flesh? Do you see as humans see? 5Are your days like the days of mortals, or your years like human years, 6that you seek out my iniquity and search for my sin, 7although you know that I am not guilty, and there is no one to deliver out of your hand?

8Your hands fashioned and made me; and now you turn and destroy me. 9Remember that you fashioned me like clay; and will you turn me to dust again? 10Did you not pour me out like milk and curdle me like cheese? 11You clothed me with skin and flesh, and knit me together with bones and sinews. 12You have granted me life and steadfast love, and your care has preserved my spirit. 13Yet these things you hid in your heart; I know that this was your purpose.

14If I sin, you watch me, and do not acquit me of my iniquity. 15If I am wicked, woe to me! If I am righteous, I cannot lift up my head, for I am filled with disgrace and look upon my affliction. 16Bold as a lion you hunt me; you repeat your exploits against me. 17You renew your witnesses against me, and increase your vexation toward me; you bring fresh troops against me. 18“Why did you bring me forth from the womb? Would that I had died before any eye had seen me, 19and were as though I had not been, carried from the womb to the grave. 20Are not the days of my life few? Let me alone, that I may find a little comfort 21before I go, never to return, to the land of gloom and deep darkness, 22the land of gloom and chaos, where light is like darkness.”

11Then Zophar the Naamathite answered: 2“Should a multitude of words go unanswered, and should one full of talk be vindicated? 3Should your babble put others to silence, and when you mock, shall no one shame you? 4For you say, ‘My conduct is pure, and I am clean in God’s sight.’ 5But oh, that God would speak, and open his lips to you, 6and that he would tell you the secrets of wisdom! For wisdom is many-sided. Know then that God exacts of you less than your guilt deserves.

7“Can you find out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limit of the Almighty? 8It is higher than heaven—what can you do? Deeper than Sheol—what can you know? 9Its measure is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea. 10If he passes through, and imprisons, and assembles for judgment, who can hinder him? 11For he knows those who are worthless; when he sees iniquity, will he not consider it? 12But a stupid person will get understanding, when a wild ass is born human.

13“If you direct your heart rightly, you will stretch out your hands toward him. 14If iniquity is in your hand, put it far away, and do not let wickedness reside in your tents. 15Surely then you will lift up your face without blemish; you will be secure, and will not fear. 16You will forget your misery; you will remember it as waters that have passed away. 17And your life will be brighter than the noonday; its darkness will be like the morning. 18And you will have confidence, because there is hope; you will be protected and take your rest in safety. 19You will lie down, and no one will make you afraid; many will entreat your favor. 20But the eyes of the wicked will fail; all way of escape will be lost to them, and their hope is to breathe their last.”

12Then Job answered: 2“No doubt you are the people, and wisdom will die with you. 3But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Who does not know such things as these? 4I am a laughingstock to my friends; I, who called upon God and he answered me, a just and blameless man, I am a laughingstock. 5Those at ease have contempt for misfortune, but it is ready for those whose feet are unstable.

6The tents of robbers are at peace, and those who provoke God are secure, who bring their god in their hands.

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14 July 2018

From the oremus Bible Browser http://bible.oremus.org v2.2.8 14 July 2018.