Job Continues: Where Then Is My Hope?
17 “My spirit is broken; my days are jextinct;
kthe graveyard is ready for me.
2 Surely there are mockers about me,
and my eye dwells on their lprovocation.
3 “Lay down a pledge for me with you;
who is there who will put up msecurity for me?
4 Since you have closed their hearts to understanding,
therefore you will not let them triumph.
5 He who informs against his friends to get a share of their property—
the neyes of his children will fail.
6 “He has made me oa byword of the peoples,
and I am one before whom men spit.
7 My peye has grown dim from vexation,
and all my members are like qa shadow.
8 The upright are rappalled at this,
and the innocent stirs himself up against the godless.
9 Yet the righteous holds to his way,
and he who has sclean hands grows stronger and stronger.
10 But you, tcome on again, all of you,
and I shall not find a wise man among you.
11 My udays are past; my plans are broken off,
the desires of my heart.
12 They vmake night into day:
‘The light,’ they say, ‘is near to the darkness.’1
if I make my bed in darkness,
14 if I say to the pit, ‘You are my father,’
and to the worm, ‘My mother,’ or ‘My sister,’
15 where then is my hope?
Who will see my hope?
16 Will it go down to the bars of wSheol?
Bildad Speaks: God Punishes the Wicked
18 Then aBildad the Shuhite answered and said:
2 “How long will you bhunt for words?
Consider, and then we will speak.
3 Why are we counted as ccattle?
Why are we stupid in your sight?
4 You who dtear yourself in your anger,
shall the earth be forsaken for you,
or ethe rock be removed out of its place?
5 “Indeed, fthe light of the wicked is put out,
and the flame of his fire does not shine.
6 The light is gdark in his tent,
and his lamp above him is put out.
7 His strong steps are shortened,
and his hown schemes throw him down.
8 For he is cast into a net by his own feet,
and he walks on its mesh.
9 iA trap seizes him by the heel;
a snare lays hold of him.
10 A rope is hidden for him in the ground,
a trap for him in the path.
11 jTerrors frighten him on every side,
and chase him at his heels.
12 His strength is famished,
and calamity is kready for his stumbling.
13 It consumes the parts of his skin;
lthe firstborn of death consumes his limbs.
14 He is torn from the tent in which he trusted
and is brought to mthe king of terrors.
15 In his tent dwells that which is none of his;
nsulfur is scattered over his habitation.
16 His oroots dry up beneath,
and his branches pwither above.
17 His qmemory perishes from the earth,
and he has no name in the street.
18 rHe is thrust from light into darkness,
and driven out of the world.
19 He has no sposterity or progeny among his people,
and no survivor where he used to live.
20 They of the west are appalled at his tday,
and uhorror seizes them of the east.
21 Surely such are the dwellings of the unrighteous,
such is the place of him who vknows not God.”
Job Replies: My Redeemer Lives
19 Then Job answered and said:
2 “How long will you torment me
and break me in pieces with words?
3 These wten times you have cast reproach upon me;
are you not ashamed to wrong me?
4 And even if it be true that I have erred,
my error remains with myself.
5 If indeed you xmagnify yourselves against me
and make my disgrace an argument against me,
6 know then that God has yput me in the wrong
and closed his net about me.
7 Behold, I zcry out, ‘Violence!’ but I am not answered;
I call for help, but there is no justice.
8 He has awalled up my way, so that I cannot pass,
and he has set darkness upon my paths.
9 He has bstripped from me my glory
and taken the ccrown from my head.
10 He breaks me down on every side, and I dam gone,
and my hope has he pulled up like a tree.
11 He has kindled his wrath against me
and ecounts me as his adversary.
12 His ftroops come on together;
and encamp around my tent.
13 “He has put my hbrothers far from me,
and ithose who knew me are wholly estranged from me.
14 My relatives jhave failed me,
my close kfriends have forgotten me.
15 The guests lin my house and my maidservants count me as a stranger;
I have become a foreigner in their eyes.
16 I call to my servant, but he gives me no answer;
I must plead with him with my mouth for mercy.
17 My breath is strange to my mwife,
and I am a stench to the children of nmy own mother.
18 Even young ochildren despise me;
when I rise they talk against me.
19 All my pintimate friends abhor me,
and those whom I loved have turned against me.
20 My qbones stick to my skin and to my flesh,
and I have escaped by the skin of my teeth.
21 Have mercy on me, have mercy on me, O you my friends,
for the hand of God has rtouched me!
22 Why do you, like God, spursue me?
Why are you not satisfied with my flesh?
23 “Oh that my words were written!
Oh that they were tinscribed in a book!
24 Oh that with an iron upen and lead
they were engraved in the rock forever!
26 And after my skin has been thus destroyed,
27 whom I shall see for myself,
and my eyes shall behold, and not zanother.
My heart afaints within me!
28 If you say, ‘How we will spursue him!’
and, ‘The root of the matter is found in him,’4
29 be afraid of the sword,
for wrath brings the punishment of the sword,
that you may know there is ba judgment.”
Zophar Speaks: The Wicked Will Suffer
20 Then cZophar the Naamathite answered and said:
2 “Therefore my dthoughts answer me,
because of my haste within me.
3 I hear censure that insults me,
and out of my understanding a spirit answers me.
4 Do you not know this from of old,
esince man was placed on earth,
5 fthat the exulting of the wicked is short,
and the joy of the godless but for a moment?
6 gThough his height mount up to the heavens,
and his head reach to the clouds,
7 he will perish forever like his own hdung;
those who have seen him will say, i‘Where is he?’
8 He will fly away like ja dream and not be found;
he will be chased away like a vision of the night.
9 kThe eye that saw him will see him no more,
nor will his place any more behold him.
10 His children will seek the favor of the poor,
and his hands will lgive back his wealth.
11 His bones are full of his myouthful vigor,
but it will lie ndown with him in the dust.
12 “Though evil is sweet in his mouth,
though he hides it ounder his tongue,
13 though he is loath to let it go
and holds it in his mouth,
14 yet his food is turned in his stomach;
it is the venom of pcobras within him.
15 He swallows down riches and vomits them up again;
God casts them out of his belly.
16 He will suck the poison of cobras;
qthe tongue of a viper will kill him.
17 He will not look upon rthe rivers,
18 He will ugive back the fruit of his toil
and will not vswallow it down;
from the profit of his trading
he will get no enjoyment.
19 For he has crushed and abandoned the poor;
he has seized a house that he did not build.
yhe will not let anything in which he delights escape him.
21 There was nothing left after he had eaten;
therefore his prosperity will not endure.
22 In the fullness of his sufficiency he will be in distress;
the hand of everyone in misery will come against him.
23 To fill his belly to the full,
God1 will send his burning anger against him
and rain it upon him zinto his body.
24 aHe will flee from an iron weapon;
25 It dis drawn forth and comes out of his body;
gterrors come upon him.
26 Utter darkness is laid up for his treasures;
ha fire not fanned will devour him;
what is left in his tent will be consumed.
27 iThe heavens will reveal his iniquity,
and the earth will rise up against him.
28 The possessions of his house will be carried away,
dragged off in the day of God’s2 wrath.
29 jThis is the wicked man’s portion from God,
jthe heritage decreed for him by God.”
Job Replies: The Wicked Do Prosper
21 Then Job answered and said:
2 k“Keep listening to my words,
and let this be your comfort.
3 Bear with me, and I will speak,
and after I have spoken, lmock on.
4 As for me, is my mcomplaint against man?
Why should I not be impatient?
5 Look at me and be appalled,
and nlay your hand over your mouth.
6 When I remember, I am dismayed,
and shuddering seizes my flesh.
7 oWhy do the wicked live,
reach old age, and grow mighty in power?
8 Their poffspring are established in their presence,
and their descendants before their eyes.
9 Their houses are qsafe from fear,
and rno rod of God is upon them.
10 Their bull breeds without fail;
their cow calves and sdoes not miscarry.
11 They send out their tlittle boys like a flock,
and their children dance.
and rejoice to the sound of vthe pipe.
13 They wspend their days in prosperity,
14 They say to God, z‘Depart from us!
We do not desire the knowledge of your ways.
15 aWhat is the Almighty, that we should serve him?
And what bprofit do we get if we pray to him?’
16 Behold, is not their prosperity in their hand?
cThe counsel of the wicked is far from me.
17 “How often is it that dthe lamp of the wicked is put out?
That their calamity comes upon them?
That God1 distributes pains in his anger?
18 That they are like estraw before the wind,
and like fchaff that the storm carries away?
Let him pay it out to them, that they may iknow it.
20 Let their own eyes see their destruction,
and let them jdrink of the wrath of the Almighty.
21 For what do they care for their houses after them,
when kthe number of their months is cut off?
22 lWill any teach God knowledge,
seeing that he mjudges those who are on high?
23 One dies in his full vigor,
being wholly at ease and secure,
24 his pails2 full of milk
and nthe marrow of his bones moist.
25 Another dies in obitterness of soul,
never having tasted of prosperity.
26 They plie down alike in the dust,
and qthe worms cover them.
27 “Behold, I know your thoughts
and your schemes to wrong me.
28 For you say, r‘Where is the house of the prince?
Where is sthe tent in which the wicked lived?’
29 Have you not asked those who travel the roads,
and do you not accept their testimony
30 that tthe evil man is spared in the day of calamity,
that he is rescued in the day of wrath?
31 Who declares his way uto his face,
and who vrepays him for what he has done?
32 When he is wcarried to the grave,
watch is kept over his tomb.
33 xThe clods of the valley are sweet to him;
yall mankind follows after him,
and those who go before him are innumerable.
34 How then will you comfort me with empty nothings?
There is nothing left of your answers but falsehood.”