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Job 4:7–9:7

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;

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14 July 2018

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