Job 31–33; Psalm 74

Job’s Final Appeal

31  I have made a covenant with my beyes;

how then could I gaze at a virgin?

What would be cmy portion from God above

and cmy heritage from the Almighty on high?

Is not calamity for the unrighteous,

and disaster for the workers of iniquity?

dDoes not he see my ways

and enumber all my steps?

If I have walked with falsehood

and my foot has hastened to deceit;

(Let me be fweighed in a just balance,

and let God know my integrity!)

if my step has turned aside from the way

and gmy heart has gone after my eyes,

and if any hspot has stuck to my hands,

then let me isow, and another eat,

and let what grows for me1 be rooted out.

If my heart has been enticed toward a woman,

and I have jlain in wait at my neighbor’s door,

10  then let my wife kgrind for another,

and let others lbow down on her.

11  For that would be a heinous crime;

that would be an iniquity mto be punished by the judges;

12  for that would be a fire nthat consumes as far as Abaddon,

and it would burn to the root all my increase.

13  If I have rejected the cause of my manservant or my maidservant,

when they brought a complaint against me,

14  what then shall I do when God rises up?

When he omakes inquiry, what shall I answer him?

15  Did pnot he who made me in the womb make him?

And did not one fashion us in the womb?

16  If I have qwithheld anything that the poor desired,

or have rcaused the eyes of the widow to fail,

17  or have eaten my morsel alone,

and the fatherless has not eaten of it

18  (for from my youth the fatherless2 grew up with me as with a father,

and from my mother’s womb I guided the widow3),

19  if I have seen anyone sperish for tlack of clothing,

or the needy without tcovering,

20  if his body has not ublessed me,4

and if he was not warmed with the fleece of my sheep,

21  if I have raised my hand against vthe fatherless,

because I saw my help in wthe gate,

22  then let my shoulder blade fall from my shoulder,

and let my arm be broken from its socket.

23  For I was xin terror of calamity from God,

and I could not have faced his xmajesty.

24  yIf I have made gold my ztrust

or called afine gold my confidence,

25  if I have brejoiced because my wealth was abundant

or because cmy hand had found much,

26  dif I have looked at the sun5 when it shone,

or ethe moon moving in splendor,

27  and my heart has been secretly enticed,

and my mouth has kissed my hand,

28  this also would be fan iniquity to be punished by the judges,

for I would have been false to God above.

29  If I have grejoiced at the ruin of him who hated me,

or exulted when evil overtook him

30  (hI have not let my mouth sin

by asking for his life with a curse),

31  if the men of my tent have not said,

Who is there that has not been filled with his imeat?

32  (jthe sojourner has not lodged in the street;

I have opened my doors to the traveler),

33  if I khave concealed my transgressions las others do6

by hiding my iniquity in my heart,

34  because I stood in great fear of mthe multitude,

and the contempt of families terrified me,

so that I kept silence, and did not go out of doors

35  Oh, that I had one to hear me!

(Here is my signature! Let the Almighty nanswer me!)

Oh, that I had othe indictment written by my adversary!

36  Surely I would carry it on my pshoulder;

I would qbind it on me as ra crown;

37  I would give him an account of all my steps;

like a prince I would approach him.

38  If my land has cried out against me

and its furrows have wept together,

39  sif I have eaten its yield without payment

and made its owners tbreathe their last,

40  let uthorns grow instead of wheat,

and foul weeds instead of barley.

The words of Job are ended.

Elihu Rebukes Job’s Three Friends

32 So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was vrighteous in his own eyes. Then Elihu the son of Barachel wthe Buzite, of the family of Ram, burned with anger. He burned with anger at Job because he justified himself xrather than God. He burned with anger also at Job’s three friends because they had found no answer, although they had ydeclared Job to be in the wrong. Now Elihu had waited to speak to Job because they were older than he. And when Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of these three men, he burned with anger.

And Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite answered and said:

I am young in years,

and you are zaged;

therefore I was timid and afraid

to declare my opinion to you.

I said, Let days speak,

and many years teach wisdom.

But it is athe spirit in man,

bthe breath of the Almighty, that makes him cunderstand.

dIt is not the old7 who are wise,

nor the aged who understand what is right.

10  Therefore I say, Listen to me;

let me also declare my opinion.

11  Behold, I waited for your words,

I listened for your wise sayings,

while you searched out what to say.

12  I gave you my attention,

and, behold, there was none among you who refuted Job

or who answered his words.

13  Beware elest you say, We have found wisdom;

God may vanquish him, not a man.

14  He has not directed his words against me,

and I will not answer him with your speeches.

15  They are dismayed; they answer no more;

they have not a word to say.

16  And shall I wait, because they do not speak,

because they stand there, and answer no more?

17  I also will answer with my share;

I also will declare my opinion.

18  For I am full of words;

the spirit within me constrains me.

19  Behold, my belly is like wine that has no vent;

like new fwineskins ready to burst.

20  gI must speak, that I may find hrelief;

I must open my lips and answer.

21  I will not ishow partiality to any man

or use flattery toward any person.

22  For I do not know how to flatter,

else my Maker would soon take me away.

Elihu Rebukes Job

33  But now, hear my speech, O Job,

and listen to all my words.

Behold, I jopen my mouth;

the tongue in my mouth speaks.

My words declare the uprightness of my heart,

and what my lips know they speak sincerely.

kThe Spirit of God has made me,

and lthe breath of the Almighty gives me life.

mAnswer me, if you can;

nset your words in order before me; take your stand.

Behold, I am toward God as you are;

I too was pinched off from a piece of oclay.

Behold, no pfear of me need terrify you;

my qpressure will not be heavy upon you.

Surely you have spoken in my ears,

and I have heard the sound of your words.

You say, I am rpure, without stransgression;

I am clean, and there is no iniquity in me.

10  Behold, he finds occasions against me,

he tcounts me as his enemy,

11  he uputs my feet in the stocks

and vwatches all my paths.

12  Behold, in this you are not right. I will answer you,

for God is greater than man.

13  Why do you wcontend against him,

saying, He xwill answer none of man’s8 words?9

14  For God yspeaks in one way,

zand in two, though man adoes not perceive it.

15  In ba dream, in ca vision of dthe night,

when cdeep sleep falls on men,

while they slumber on their beds,

16  then he eopens the ears of men

and terrifies10 them with warnings,

17  that he may turn man aside from his fdeed

and conceal pride from a man;

18  he keeps back his soul from the pit,

his life from gperishing by the sword.

19  Man is also rebuked with pain on his bed

and with continual strife in his hbones,

20  so that his ilife loathes bread,

and his appetite jthe choicest food.

21  His flesh is so wasted away that it cannot be seen,

and his bones that were not seen kstick out.

22  His soul draws near lthe pit,

and his life to mthose who bring death.

23  If there be for him nan angel,

oa mediator, pone of the thousand,

to declare to man what is qright for him,

24  and he is merciful to him, and says,

Deliver him from going down into the pit;

I have found ra ransom;

25  let his flesh sbecome fresh with youth;

let him return to the days of his youthful vigor;

26  then man11 tprays to God, and he accepts him;

he usees his face with a shout of joy,

and he vrestores to man his righteousness.

27  He sings before men and says:

I wsinned and perverted what was right,

and it was not repaid to me.

28  He has redeemed my xsoul from going down yinto the pit,

and my life shall zlook upon the light.

29  Behold, God does all these things,

twice, athree times, with a man,

30  to bring back his soul from the pit,

that he may be lighted with bthe light of life.

31  Pay attention, O Job, listen to me;

be silent, and I will speak.

32  If you have any words, canswer me;

dspeak, for I desire to justify you.

33  If not, elisten to me;

be silent, and I will teach you wisdom.


Arise, O God, Defend Your Cause

A Maskil1 of rAsaph.

74  O God, why do you scast us off forever?

Why does your anger tsmoke against uthe sheep of your pasture?

vRemember your congregation, which you have wpurchased of old,

which you have xredeemed to be ythe tribe of your heritage!

Remember Mount Zion, zwhere you have dwelt.

Direct your steps to athe perpetual ruins;

the enemy has destroyed everything in the sanctuary!

Your foes have broared in the midst of your meeting place;

cthey set up their down signs for esigns.

They were like those who swing faxes

in a forest of trees.2

And all its gcarved wood

they broke down with hatchets and hammers.

They hset your sanctuary on fire;

they iprofaned jthe dwelling place of your name,

bringing it down to the ground.

They ksaid to themselves, We will utterly subdue them;

they burned all the meeting places of God in the land.

We do not see our lsigns;

mthere is no longer any prophet,

and there is none among us who knows how long.

10  How long, O God, nis the foe to scoff?

Is the enemy to revile your name forever?

11  Why odo you hold back your hand, your right hand?

Take it from the fold of your garment3 and destroy them!

12  Yet pGod my King is from of old,

working salvation in the midst of the earth.

13  You qdivided the sea by your might;

you rbroke the heads of sthe sea monsters4 on the waters.

14  You crushed the heads of tLeviathan;

you gave him as food for the creatures of the wilderness.

15  You usplit open springs and brooks;

you vdried up ever-flowing streams.

16  Yours is the day, yours also the night;

you have established wthe heavenly lights and the sun.

17  You have xfixed all the boundaries of the earth;

you have made ysummer and winter.

18  zRemember this, O Lord, how the enemy scoffs,

and aa foolish people reviles your name.

19  Do not deliver the soul of your bdove to the wild beasts;

cdo not forget the life of your poor forever.

20  Have regard for dthe covenant,

for ethe dark places of the land are full of the habitations of violence.

21  Let not fthe downtrodden gturn back in shame;

let hthe poor and needy praise your name.

22  Arise, O God, idefend your cause;

jremember how the foolish scoff at you all the day!

23  Do not forget the clamor of your foes,

kthe uproar of those who rise against you, which goes up continually!