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Job 11:1–12:25

Zophar’s First Response to Job

11 Thena Zophar the Naamathite answered and said,

“Should an abundance of words go unanswered,

or a man full of talkb be vindicated?c

Should your loose talk put people to silence?

And when you mock, shall no one put you to shame?d

For you say, ‘My teaching is pure,

and I am clean in your sight.’

But,e O thatf God might speak,

and that he would open his lips to you,

and that he would tell you the secrets of wisdom,

for insight has many sides.g

And know that God on your behalfh has forgotten some ofi your guilt.

“Can you find out the essence of God,

or can you find out the ultimate limitsj of Shaddai?

It is higher than the heaven;k what can you do?

It is deeper than Sheol; what can you know?

Its measure is longer than the earth

and broader than the sea.

10 “If he passes through and imprisons someonel

and summons the assembly,m thenn who can hinder him?

11 For he knows those who are worthless;o

when he seesp iniquity, he will not consider it.q

12 Butr an empty-headed persons will get understanding

whent a wild donkey’s colt is born as a human being.

13 “If you yourselfu direct your heart

and stretch out your hands to him—

14 if iniquityv is in your hand, put it far away,

and you must not let wickedness reside in your tents—

15 surely then you will lift up your face withoutw blemish,

and you will be firmly established and will not fear.x

16 For you yourselfy will forget your misery;

you will remember it as water that has flowed past.

17 And your life will be brighter than noon;z

its darkness will be like the morning.

18 And you will have confidence because there is hope;

and you will be well protected—you will sleep in safety.a

19 And you will lie down, and no one will make you afraid;b

and many will entreat your favor.c

20 Butd the eyes of the wicked will fail;

and refuge will be lost to them,

and their hope is to breathe their last breath.”e

Job’s Fourth Speech

12 Thena Job answered and said,

“Truly indeed youb are the people,

and wisdom will die with you.c

I also have insightd like you;e

I am not more inferior than you.f

And who does not know things like these?g

I am a laughingstock to my friends:h

He calls on God, and he answers him.’

A righteous, blameless man is a laughingstock.

Those at ease have contempti for the thought of disaster,j

but it is ready for those unstable of foot.

The tents of the destroyers are at peace,

and there is security for those who provoke God,

for those whom God brings into his hand.k

“Butl askm the animals, and they will teach you,

and the birds of the heaven, and they will tell you;

or ask the earth, and it will teach you,

and the fishes of the sea will declare to you.

Who among all of these does not know

that Yahweh’s hand has done this?

10 In whose hand is the life of all living things

and the breath of every human being?n

11 Does not the ear test words

and the palate taste food for itself?

12 Wisdom is with the aged,

and understanding is in length of days.

13 “With him are wisdom and powerful deeds,

and to him belong counsel and understanding.

14 If he tears down, theno it will not be rebuilt;

if he shuts a man in, thenp he cannot be freed.

15 Look, if he withholds the water,q thenr they dry up;

and if he sends them out, thens they overwhelm the land.

16 “Strength and sound wisdom are with him;

the deceived and the deceiver are his.t

17 He leads counselors away stripped,

and he makes fools of judges.

18 He loosens the fetters of kings,

and he binds a loincloth on their loins.

19 He leads priests away stripped,

and he overthrows the members of ancient families.u

20 He deprives the trustworthy of speech,

and he takes away the discretion of elders.

21 He pours contempt on noblemen,

and he loosens the girdle of the mighty.

22 “He uncovers mysteries out of darkness,

and he brings deep shadow to the light.

23 He makes the nations great, thenv he destroys them;

he expands the nations, thenw he guides them.

24 He strips away the insight of the heads of the earth’s people,

and he makes them wander in a pathless wasteland.x

25 They grope in the dark withouty light,

and he makes them stagger like az drunkard.

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