22 Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered:
2 “Is it to God that a strong man is of benefit?
Is it to him that even a wise man is profitable? 1
3 Is it of any special benefit 2 to the Almighty
that you should be righteous,
or is it any gain to him
that you make your ways blameless? 3
4 Is it because of your piety 4 that he rebukes you
and goes to judgment with you? 5
5 Is not your wickedness great 6
and is there no end to your iniquity?
6 “For you took pledges 7 from your brothers
for no reason,
and you stripped the clothing from the naked. 8
7 You gave the weary 9 no water to drink
and from the hungry you withheld food.
8 Although you were a powerful man, 10 owning land, 11
an honored man 12 living on it, 13
9 you sent widows away empty-handed,
and the arms 14 of the orphans you crushed. 15
10 That is why snares surround you,
and why sudden fear terrifies you,
11 why it is so dark you cannot see, 16
and why a flood 17 of water covers you.
12 “Is not God on high in heaven? 18
And see 19 the lofty stars, 20 how high they are!
13 But you have said, ‘What does God know?
Does he judge through such deep darkness? 21
14 Thick clouds are a veil for him, so he does not see us, 22
as he goes back and forth
in the vault 23 of heaven.’ 24
15 Will you keep to the old path 25
that evil men have walked –
16 men 26 who were carried off 27 before their time, 28
when the flood 29 was poured out 30
on their foundations? 31
17 They were saying to God, ‘Turn away from us,’
and ‘What can the Almighty do to us?’ 32
18 But it was he 33 who filled their houses
with good things –
yet the counsel of the wicked 34
was far from me. 35
19 The righteous see their destruction 36 and rejoice;
the innocent mock them scornfully, 37 saying,
20 ‘Surely our enemies 38 are destroyed,
and fire consumes their wealth.’
21 “Reconcile yourself 39 with God, 40
and be at peace 41 with him;
in this way your prosperity will be good.
22 Accept instruction 42 from his mouth
and store up his words 43 in your heart.
23 If you return to the Almighty, you will be built up; 44
if you remove wicked behavior far from your tent,
24 and throw 45 your gold 46 in the dust –
your gold 47 of Ophir
among the rocks in the ravines –
25 then the Almighty himself will be your gold, 48
and the choicest 49 silver for you.
26 Surely then you will delight yourself 50 in the Almighty,
and will lift up your face toward God.
27 You will pray to him and he will hear you,
and you will fulfill your vows to him. 51
28 Whatever you decide 52 on a matter,
it will be established for you,
and light will shine on your ways.
29 When people are brought low 53 and you say
‘Lift them up!’ 54
then he will save the downcast; 55
30 he will deliver even someone who is not innocent, 56
who will escape 57 through the cleanness of your hands.”
23 Then Job answered:
2 “Even today my complaint is still bitter; 1
his 2 hand is heavy despite 3 my groaning.
3 O that I knew 4 where I might find him, 5
that I could come 6 to his place of residence! 7
4 I would lay out my case 8 before him
and fill my mouth with arguments.
5 I would know with what words 9 he would answer me,
and understand what he would say to me.
6 Would he contend 10 with me with great power?
No, he would only pay attention to me. 11
7 There 12 an upright person
could present his case 13 before him,
and I would be delivered forever from my judge.
8 “If I go to the east, he is not there,
and to the west, yet I do not perceive him.
9 In the north 14 when he is at work, 15
I do not see him; 16
when he turns 17 to the south,
I see no trace of him.
10 But he knows the pathway that I take; 18
if he tested me, I would come forth like gold. 19
11 My feet 20 have followed 21 his steps closely;
I have kept to his way and have not turned aside. 22
12 I have not departed from the commands of his lips;
I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my allotted portion. 23
13 But he is unchangeable, 24 and who can change 25 him?
Whatever he 26 has desired, he does.
14 For he fulfills his decree against me, 27
and many such things are his plans. 28
15 That is why I am terrified in his presence;
when I consider, I am afraid because of him.
16 Indeed, God has made my heart faint; 29
the Almighty has terrified me.
17 Yet I have not been silent because of the darkness,
because of the thick darkness
that covered my face. 30
24 “Why are times not appointed by 1 the Almighty? 2
Why do those who know him not see his days?
2 Men 3 move boundary stones;
they seize the flock and pasture them. 4
3 They drive away the orphan’s donkey;
they take the widow’s ox as a pledge.
4 They turn the needy from the pathway,
and the poor of the land hide themselves together. 5
5 Like 6 wild donkeys in the desert
they 7 go out to their labor, 8
seeking diligently for food;
the wasteland provides 9 food for them
and for their children.
6 They reap fodder 10 in the field,
and glean 11 in the vineyard of the wicked.
7 They spend the night naked because they lack clothing;
they have no covering against the cold.
8 They are soaked by mountain rains
and huddle 12 in the rocks because they lack shelter.
9 The fatherless child is snatched 13 from the breast, 14
the infant of the poor is taken as a pledge. 15
10 They go about naked, without clothing,
and go hungry while they carry the sheaves. 16
11 They press out the olive oil between the rows of olive trees; 17
they tread the winepresses while they are thirsty. 18
12 From the city the dying 19 groan,
and the wounded 20 cry out for help,
but God charges no one with wrongdoing. 21
13 There are those 22 who rebel against the light;
they do not know its ways
and they do not stay on its paths.
14 Before daybreak 23 the murderer rises up;
he kills the poor and the needy;
in the night he is 24 like a thief. 25
15 And the eye of the adulterer watches for the twilight,
thinking, 26 ‘No eye can see me,’
and covers his face with a mask.
16 In the dark the robber 27 breaks into houses, 28
but by day they shut themselves in; 29
they do not know the light. 30
17 For all of them, 31 the morning is to them
like deep darkness;
they are friends with the terrors of darkness. 18 32
“You say, 33 ‘He is foam 34 on the face of the waters; 35
their portion of the land is cursed
so that no one goes to their vineyard. 36
19 The drought as well as the heat carry away
the melted snow; 37
so the grave 38 takes away those who have sinned. 39
20 The womb 40 forgets him,
the worm feasts on him,
no longer will he be remembered.
Like a tree, wickedness will be broken down.
21 He preys on 41 the barren and childless woman, 42
and does not treat the widow well.
22 But God 43 drags off the mighty by his power;
when God 44 rises up against him, he has no faith in his life. 45
23 God 46 may let them rest in a feeling of security, 47
but he is constantly watching 48 all their ways. 49
24 They are exalted for a little while,
and then they are gone, 50
they are brought low 51 like all others,
and gathered in, 52
and like a head of grain they are cut off.’ 53
25 “If this is not so, who can prove me a liar
and reduce my words to nothing?” 54