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Job 14:1–18:21

Job Continues: Death Comes Soon to All

14 “Man who is kborn of a woman

is lfew of days and mfull of trouble.

He comes out like na flower and owithers;

he flees like pa shadow and continues not.

And do you qopen your eyes on such a one

and rbring me into judgment with you?

Who can bring sa clean thing out of an unclean?

There is not one.

Since his tdays are determined,

and uthe number of his months is with you,

and you have appointed his limits that he cannot pass,

vlook away from him and leave him alone,1

that he may enjoy, like wa hired hand, his day.

“For there is hope for a tree,

if it be cut down, that it will sprout again,

and that its shoots will not cease.

Though its root grow old in the earth,

and xits stump die in the soil,

yet at the scent of water it will bud

and put out ybranches like a young plant.

10  But a man dies and is laid low;

man breathes his last, and zwhere is he?

11  aAs waters fail from a lake

and a river wastes away and dries up,

12  so a man lies down and rises not again;

till bthe heavens are no more he will not awake

or be croused out of his sleep.

13  Oh that you would dhide me in eSheol,

that you would dconceal me funtil your wrath be past,

that you would appoint me a set time, and remember me!

14  If a man dies, shall he live again?

All the days of my gservice I would hwait,

till my renewal2 should come.

15  You would icall, and I would answer you;

you would long for the jwork of your hands.

16  For then you would knumber my steps;

you would not keep lwatch over my sin;

17  my transgression would be msealed up in a bag,

and you would cover over my iniquity.

18  “But the mountain falls and ncrumbles away,

and othe rock is removed from its place;

19  the waters wear away the stones;

the torrents wash away the soil of the earth;

so you destroy the hope of man.

20  You prevail forever against him, and he passes;

you change his countenance, and send him away.

21  His sons come to honor, and he pdoes not know it;

they are brought low, and he perceives it not.

22  He feels only the pain of his own body,

and he mourns only for himself.”

Eliphaz Accuses: Job Does Not Fear God

15 Then qEliphaz the Temanite answered and said:

“Should ra wise man answer with swindy knowledge,

and fill his tbelly with uthe east wind?

Should he argue in unprofitable talk,

or in words with which he can do no good?

But you are doing away with the fear of God1

and hindering meditation before God.

For your iniquity teaches your mouth,

and you choose the tongue of the crafty.

Your vown mouth condemns you, and not I;

wyour own lips testify against you.

x“Are you the first man who was born?

Or ywere you brought forth zbefore the hills?

Have you listened in athe council of God?

And do you limit wisdom to yourself?

bWhat do you know that we do not know?

What do you understand that is not clear to us?

10  cBoth the gray-haired and the aged are among us,

older than your father.

11  Are the comforts of God too small for you,

or the word that deals gently with you?

12  Why does your heart carry you away,

and why do your eyes flash,

13  that you turn your dspirit against God

and bring such words out of your mouth?

14  eWhat is man, fthat he can be pure?

Or he who is gborn of a woman, that he can be righteous?

15  Behold, God2 hputs no trust in his iholy ones,

and the heavens are not pure in his sight;

16  jhow much less one who is abominable and kcorrupt,

a man who ldrinks injustice like water!

17  “I will show you; hear me,

and what I have seen I will declare

18  (what wise men have told,

without hiding it mfrom their fathers,

19  to whom alone the land was given,

and no nstranger passed among them).

20  The wicked man writhes in pain all his days,

through all the oyears that are laid up for pthe ruthless.

21  qDreadful sounds are in his ears;

in rprosperity the destroyer will come upon him.

22  He does not believe that he will return out of darkness,

and he is marked for the sword.

23  He swanders abroad for bread, saying, ‘Where is it?’

He knows that a day of darkness is ready at his hand;

24  distress and anguish terrify him;

they tprevail against him, like a king ready for battle.

25  Because he has stretched out his hand against God

and defies the Almighty,

26  urunning vstubbornly against him

with a thickly bossed shield;

27  because he has wcovered his face with his fat

and gathered fat upon his waist

28  and has lived in desolate cities,

in houses that none should inhabit,

which were ready to become heaps of ruins;

29  he will not be rich, and his wealth will not endure,

nor will his possessions spread over the earth;3

30  he will not depart from darkness;

the flame will dry up his shoots,

and by xthe breath of his mouth he will depart.

31  Let him not ytrust in emptiness, deceiving himself,

for emptiness will be his payment.

32  It will be paid in full zbefore his time,

and his branch will not be green.

33  He will shake off his unripe grape like the vine,

and cast off his blossom like the olive tree.

34  For athe company of the godless is barren,

and bfire consumes the tents of bribery.

35  They cconceive trouble and give birth to evil,

and their dwomb prepares deceit.”

Job Replies: Miserable Comforters Are You

16 Then Job answered and said:

“I have heard emany such things;

fmiserable comforters are you all.

Shall gwindy words have an end?

Or what provokes you that you answer?

I also could speak as you do,

if you were in my place;

I could join words together against you

and hshake my head at you.

I could strengthen you with my mouth,

and the solace of my lips would assuage your pain.

“If I speak, my pain is not assuaged,

and if I forbear, how much of it leaves me?

Surely now God has worn me out;

ihe has1 made desolate all my company.

And he has shriveled me up,

which is ja witness against me,

and my kleanness has risen up against me;

it testifies to my face.

He has ltorn me in his wrath mand hated me;

he has ngnashed his teeth at me;

my adversary sharpens his eyes against me.

10  Men have ogaped at me with their mouth;

they have pstruck me insolently on the cheek;

they qmass themselves together against me.

11  God gives me up to the ungodly

and casts me into the hands of the wicked.

12  I was at ease, and he broke me apart;

he seized me by the neck and dashed me to pieces;

he set me up as his rtarget;

13  his sarchers surround me.

He slashes open my kidneys tand does not spare;

he upours out my gall on the ground.

14  He breaks me with vbreach upon breach;

he wruns upon me like a warrior.

15  I have sewed xsackcloth upon my skin

and have laid ymy strength zin the dust.

16  My face is red with weeping,

and on my eyelids is adeep darkness,

17  although there is no bviolence in my hands,

and my prayer is pure.

18  “O earth, ccover not my blood,

and let my dcry find no resting place.

19  Even now, behold, my ewitness is in heaven,

and he who testifies for me is fon high.

20  My friends gscorn me;

my eye pours out tears to God,

21  that he would hargue the case of a man with God,

as2 a son of man does with his neighbor.

22  For when a few years have come

I shall go the way ifrom which I shall not return.

Job Continues: Where Then Is My Hope?

17 “My spirit is broken; my days are jextinct;

kthe graveyard is ready for me.

Surely there are mockers about me,

and my eye dwells on their lprovocation.

“Lay down a pledge for me with you;

who is there who will put up msecurity for me?

Since you have closed their hearts to understanding,

therefore you will not let them triumph.

He who informs against his friends to get a share of their property—

the neyes of his children will fail.

“He has made me oa byword of the peoples,

and I am one before whom men spit.

My peye has grown dim from vexation,

and all my members are like qa shadow.

The upright are rappalled at this,

and the innocent stirs himself up against the godless.

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

13  If I hope for wSheol as xmy house,

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?

Shall we ydescend together zinto the dust?”2

Bildad Speaks: God Punishes the Wicked

18 Then aBildad the Shuhite answered and said:

“How long will you bhunt for words?

Consider, and then we will speak.

Why are we counted as ccattle?

Why are we stupid in your sight?

You who dtear yourself in your anger,

shall the earth be forsaken for you,

or ethe rock be removed out of its place?

“Indeed, fthe light of the wicked is put out,

and the flame of his fire does not shine.

The light is gdark in his tent,

and his lamp above him is put out.

His strong steps are shortened,

and his hown schemes throw him down.

For he is cast into a net by his own feet,

and he walks on its mesh.

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 t

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