Job 34–35; Acts 15:1–21

Elihu Asserts God’s Justice

34 Then Elihu answered and said:

Hear my words, you wise men,

and give ear to me, you who know;

for gthe ear tests words

as the palate tastes food.

Let us choose hwhat is right;

let us know among ourselves what is good.

For Job has said, I am iin the right,

and jGod has taken away my right;

in spite of my right I am counted a liar;

my wound is incurable, though I am kwithout transgression.

What man is like Job,

who ldrinks up scoffing like water,

who travels in company with evildoers

and walks mwith wicked men?

For nhe has said, It profits a man nothing

that he should take delight in God.

10  Therefore, hear me, you men of understanding:

far be it from God that he should odo wickedness,

and from the Almighty that he should do wrong.

11  For according to pthe work of a man he will repay him,

and qaccording to his ways he will make it befall him.

12  Of a truth, God will not do wickedly,

and rthe Almighty will not pervert justice.

13  Who gave him charge over the earth,

and who slaid on him1 the whole world?

14  If he should tset his heart to it

and ugather to himself his vspirit and his breath,

15  all flesh would perish together,

and man would wreturn to dust.

16  If you have understanding, hear this;

listen to what I say.

17  xShall one who hates justice govern?

Will you condemn him who is righteous and mighty,

18  who ysays to a king, Worthless one,

and to nobles, Wicked man,

19  who zshows no partiality to princes,

nor regards the rich amore than the poor,

for bthey are all the work of his hands?

20  In a moment cthey die;

at dmidnight the people are shaken and pass away,

and the mighty are taken away by eno human hand.

21  For his eyes are on fthe ways of a man,

and he sees all his fsteps.

22  There is no ggloom or hdeep darkness

where evildoers may hide themselves.

23  For God2 has no need to consider a man further,

that he should go before God in ijudgment.

24  He jshatters the mighty without investigation

and sets lothers in their place.

25  Thus, knowing their works,

he moverturns them in the night, and they are crushed.

26  He strikes them for their wickedness

in a place for all to see,

27  because they turned aside from nfollowing him

and had no regard for any of his ways,

28  so that they ocaused the cry of the poor to come to him,

and he pheard the cry of the afflicted

29  When he is quiet, who can condemn?

When he hides his face, who can behold him,

whether it be a nation or a man?

30  that a godless man should not reign,

that he should not ensnare the people.

31  For has anyone said to God,

I have borne punishment; I will not offend any more;

32  rteach me what I do not see;

if I have done iniquity, I will do it no more?

33  Will he then make repayment to suit you,

because you reject it?

For you must choose, and not I;

therefore sdeclare what you know.3

34  Men of understanding will say to me,

and the wise man who hears me will say:

35  Job tspeaks without knowledge;

his words are without insight.

36  Would that Job were tried to the end,

because he answers like wicked men.

37  For he adds rebellion to his sin;

he uclaps his hands among us

and multiplies his words against God.

Elihu Condemns Job

35 And Elihu answered and said:

Do you think this to be just?

Do you say, vIt is my right before God,

that you ask, wWhat advantage have I?

How am I better off than if I had sinned?

I will answer you

and xyour friends with you.

yLook at the heavens, and see;

and behold the clouds, which are higher than you.

If you have sinned, zwhat do you accomplish against him?

And if your transgressions are multiplied, what do you do to him?

aIf you are righteous, what do you give to him?

Or what does he receive from your hand?

Your wickedness concerns a man like yourself,

and your righteousness ba son of man.

Because of the multitude of coppressions people dcry out;

they call for help because of the arm of ethe mighty.4

10  But none says, Where is God my fMaker,

who gives gsongs in the night,

11  who teaches us hmore than the beasts of the earth

and makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens?

12  There they icry out, but he does not answer,

because of the pride of evil men.

13  Surely God does not hear an empty cry,

nor does the Almighty regard it.

14  How much less when you say that you jdo not see him,

that the case is before him, and you are kwaiting for him!

15  And now, because lhis anger does not punish,

and he does not take much note of transgression,5

16  Job opens his mouth in empty talk;

he mmultiplies words nwithout knowledge.


The Jerusalem Council

15 yBut some men came down from Judea and were teaching zthe brothers, Unless you are acircumcised baccording to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved. And after Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and cdebate with them, Paul and Barnabas and dsome of the others were appointed to go up to Jerusalem to ethe apostles and the elders about this question. So, fbeing sent on their way by the church, they passed through both Phoenicia and Samaria, gdescribing in detail the conversion of the Gentiles, and hbrought great joy to all ithe brothers.1 jWhen they came to Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the church and kthe apostles and the elders, and gthey declared all that God had done with them. But some believers who belonged to lthe party of the Pharisees rose up and said, mIt is necessary nto circumcise them and to order them to keep the law of Moses.

oThe kapostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. And after there had been much pdebate, Peter stood up and said to them, Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, qthat by my mouth the Gentiles should hear rthe word of sthe gospel and believe. And God, twho knows the heart, ubore witness to them, vby giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, and whe made no distinction between us and them, xhaving cleansed their hearts yby faith. 10 Now, therefore, why zare you putting God to the test aby placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples bthat neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11 But we cbelieve that we will be dsaved through ethe grace of the Lord Jesus, wjust as they will.

12 And all the assembly fell silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul fas they related what signs and wonders God had done through them among the Gentiles. 13 After they finished speaking, gJames replied, Brothers, listen to me. 14 hSimeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles, to take from them ia people for his name. 15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written,

16  jAfter this I will return,

and I will rebuild the tent of David that has fallen;

I will rebuild its ruins,

and I will restore it,

17  that the remnant2 of mankind kmay seek the Lord,

and all the Gentiles lwho are called by my name,

says the Lord, who makes these things 18 mknown from of old.

19 Therefore nmy judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who oturn to God, 20 but should write to them pto abstain from qthe things polluted by idols, and from rsexual immorality, and from swhat has been strangled, and from sblood. 21 For from ancient generations Moses has had in every city those who proclaim him, tfor he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues.