Zophar Speaks: You Deserve Worse
11 Then dZophar the Naamathite answered and said:
2 “Should ea multitude of words go unanswered,
and a man full of talk be judged right?
3 Should your babble silence men,
and when you mock, shall no one shame you?
and I am clean in God’s1 eyes.’
5 But oh, that God would speak
and open his lips to you,
6 and that he would tell you the secrets of wisdom!
Know then that God iexacts of you less than your guilt deserves.
7 j“Can you find out the deep things of God?
Can you find out the limit of the Almighty?
Deeper than Sheol—what can you know?
9 Its measure is longer than the earth
and broader than the sea.
and summons the court, who can nturn him back?
11 For he knows oworthless men;
when he sees iniquity, will he not consider it?
12 But a stupid man will get understanding
13 “If you rprepare your heart,
you will sstretch out your hands toward him.
14 If iniquity is in your hand, put it far away,
and let not injustice dwell in your tents.
you will be secure and will not fear.
16 You will vforget your misery;
you will remember it as waters that have passed away.
17 And your life will be wbrighter than the noonday;
its darkness will be like the morning.
18 And you will feel secure, because there is hope;
you will look around and xtake your rest in security.
19 You will xlie down, and none will make you afraid;
many will ycourt your favor.
20 But zthe eyes of the wicked will fail;
all way of escape will be lost to them,
and their hope is ato breathe their last.”
Job Replies: The Lord Has Done This
12 Then Job answered and said:
2 “No doubt you are the people,
and wisdom will die with you.
3 But I have bunderstanding as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
Who does not know csuch things as these?
4 I am da laughingstock to my friends;
I, who ecalled to God and he answered me,
a just and blameless man, am a laughingstock.
5 In the thought of one who is fat ease there is contempt for misfortune;
it is ready for those whose feet slip.
6 gThe tents of robbers are at peace,
and those who provoke God are secure,
who bring their god in their hand.4
7 “But ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you;
8 or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you;5
and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
9 Who among all these does not know
that hthe hand of the Lord has done this?
10 In ihis hand is the life of every living thing
and the breath of all mankind.
11 Does not jthe ear test words
as the palate tastes food?
12 Wisdom is with kthe aged,
and understanding in length of days.
he has counsel and understanding.
14 If he tears down, none can rebuild;
if he mshuts a man in, none can open.
15 If he nwithholds the waters, they dry up;
if he osends them out, they overwhelm the land.
16 With him are strength and psound wisdom;
the deceived and the deceiver are his.
17 He leads qcounselors away stripped,
and rjudges he makes fools.
18 He slooses the bonds of kings
and binds a waistcloth on their hips.
19 He leads priests away stripped
and overthrows the mighty.
20 He deprives of speech those who are trusted
tand takes away the discernment of the elders.
21 He upours contempt on princes
and loosens the belt of the strong.
22 He vuncovers the deeps out of darkness
and brings wdeep darkness to light.
23 He xmakes nations great, and he destroys them;
he enlarges nations, and yleads them away.
24 He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth
and zmakes them wander in a trackless waste.
25 They agrope in the dark without light,
and he makes them bstagger like a drunken man.
Job Continues: Still I Will Hope in God
13 “Behold, my eye has seen all this,
my ear has heard and understood it.
2 cWhat you know, I also know;
I am not inferior to you.
3 dBut I would speak to the Almighty,
and I desire to eargue my case with God.
4 As for you, fyou whitewash with lies;
gworthless physicians are you all.
5 Oh that you would hkeep silent,
and it would be your wisdom!
6 Hear now my argument
and listen to the pleadings of my lips.
7 Will you ispeak falsely for God
and speak ideceitfully for him?
8 Will you show partiality toward him?
Will you jplead the case for God?
9 Will it be well with you when he ksearches you out?
Or lcan you deceive him, as one deceives a man?
10 He will surely rebuke you
if in secret you show partiality.
11 Will not his mmajesty terrify you,
and the dread of him fall upon you?
12 Your maxims are proverbs of nashes;
your defenses are defenses of clay.
13 “Let me have silence, and I will speak,
and let come on me what may.
14 Why should I take my flesh in my teeth
and oput my life in my hand?
yet I will rargue my ways to his face.
16 This will be my salvation,
that the godless shall not come before him.
17 sKeep listening to my words,
and let my declaration be in your ears.
18 Behold, I have tprepared my case;
I know that I shall be in the right.
19 uWho is there who will contend with me?
For then I would be silent and die.
20 Only grant me two things,
then I will not vhide myself from your face:
21 wwithdraw your hand far from me,
and let not xdread of you terrify me.
22 yThen call, and I will answer;
or let me speak, and you reply to me.
23 How many are my iniquities and my sins?
zMake me know my transgression and my sin.
24 Why ado you hide your face
and bcount me as your enemy?
25 Will you frighten ca driven leaf
and pursue dry dchaff?
26 For you ewrite bitter things against me
and make me inherit fthe iniquities of my youth.
27 You put my feet in gthe stocks
and hwatch all my paths;
you set a limit for8 the soles of my feet.
like a garment that is jmoth-eaten.
The Conversion of Saul
9 But Saul, bstill cbreathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to dthe high priest 2 and asked him for letters eto the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to fthe Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 gNow as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him. 4 And falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting hme?” 5 And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, hwhom you are persecuting. 6 But irise and enter the city, and you will be told jwhat you are to do.” 7 kThe men who were traveling with him stood speechless, lhearing the voice but seeing no one. 8 Saul rose from the ground, and although his eyes were opened, mhe saw nothing. So they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9 And for three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank.
10 Now there was a disciple at Damascus named nAnanias. The Lord said to him in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, o“Here I am, Lord.” 11 And the Lord said to him, “Rise and go to the street called Straight, and at the house of Judas look for a man pof Tarsus named Saul, for behold, he is praying, 12 and he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias come in and qlay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight.” 13 But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, rhow much evil he has done to syour tsaints at Jerusalem. 14 And here he has authority from uthe chief priests to bind all who vcall on your name.” 15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for whe is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name xbefore the Gentiles and ykings and the children of Israel. 16 For zI will show him how much ahe must suffer bfor the sake of my name.” 17 So cAnanias departed and entered the house. And dlaying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and ebe filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18 And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and fhe regained his sight. Then ghe rose and was baptized; 19 and htaking food, he was strengthened.
Saul Proclaims Jesus in Synagogues
For isome days he was with the disciples at Damascus. 20 And immediately he proclaimed Jesus in the synagogues, saying, j“He is the Son of God.” 21 And all who heard him were amazed and said, “Is not this the man who kmade havoc lin Jerusalem of those who called upon this name? And has he not come here for this purpose, to bring them bound before the chief priests?”