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Job 23:1–24:25

Job’s Eighth Speech: A Response to Eliphaz

23 Thena Job answered and said,

“Even today my complaint is bitter;

my hand is heavy in addition to my groaning.

O thatb I knew and that I might find him;

O that I might come to his dwelling.

I would lay my case before him,c

and I would fill my mouth with arguments.

I want to know the words with which he would answer me,

and I want to understand what he would say to me.

Would he contend with me in the greatness of his strength?

No, but he himselfd would give heed to me.

There an upright person could reason with him,

and I would be acquitted forever by my judge.

“When I go forward, he is not there,e

orf backward, I cannot see him.g

When he worksh on the left, I cannot perceivei him;

he turns to the right, butj I cannot see him.

10 But he knows the way that I take;k

he tests me—I shall come out like gold.

11 My foot has held on to his steps;

I have kept his way, and I have not turned aside.

12 From the commandment of his lips, indeedl I have not departed;

I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily food.

13 “Butm he is alone,n and who can dissuade him?

And whatever he desires,o indeed,p he does it.

14 For he will carry out what he appoints for me,q

and many things like these are with him.

15 Therefore, I am horrified because of his presence;

when I consider, I trembler because of him.

16 Indeed,s God has made my heart faint,

and Shaddai has terrified me.

17 Indeed, I have not been silenced because of darkness,t

and because of me heu conceals thick darkness.

Job’s Eighth Speech, Continued

24 “Why are not times kept by Shaddai,

and why do not those who know him see his days?

Theya remove border stones;

they seize flocks, and they pasture them.

They drive away the donkey of orphans;

they take the widow’s ox as a pledge.

They thrust the poor off the road;

the needy of the earth hide themselves together.b

“Look, like wild donkeys in the desert

theyc go out to their labor as searchers for the prey;

the wilderness isd theire food for the young.

They reap theirf fodder in the field,

and they glean in the vineyard of the wicked.

They spend the night naked, withoutg clothing,

and they have no garment in the cold.

They are wet from the rainstorm of the mountains,h

and they cling to the rock withouti refuge.

“Theyj snatch the orphan from the breast,

and they take a pledge against the needy.k

10 Theyl go about naked, without clothing,

and hungry, they carry the sheaves.m

11 Between their terraces they press out oil;

they tread the presses, butn they are thirsty.

12 From the city people groan,

and the throato of the wounded cries for help;

yetp God does not regard it as unseemly.q

13 “Those are among the ones rebelling against the light;

they do not recognize his ways,

and they do not stay in his paths.

14 At duskr the murderer rises;

he kills the needy and the poor,

and in the night he is like as thief.

15 And the eye of the adulterer waits for dusk,

saying, ‘No eye will see me,’t

and he places a covering on his face.

16 He digs through houses in the darkness;

by day they shut themselves in—

they do not know the light

17 because morning likewise is to them deep darkness;

indeed, they know about the terrors of deep darkness.

18 “He himselfu is swift on the water’s surface;

their portion is cursed in the land.

No one turns toward the path of their vineyards.v

19 Drought and heat snatch away the snow waters,

like Sheol snatches away thosew who have sinned.

20 The womb forgets him.

The maggot feasts on him until he is no longer remembered,

and wickedness is broken like ax tree.

21 He feeds on the barren, who does not have a child,

and does no good to the widow.

22 Yety hez carries off the tyrants by his strength;

if he rises up, thena heb cannot be certain of life.c

23 Hed gives security to him, and he ise supported,

butf his eyes are upon their ways.

24 They are exalted a little while, theng they are gone.h

And they are brought low; they are cut off like all others,

and like the heads of grain they wither away.

25 “And if it is not so, then who can prove me a liar

and reduce my word to nothing?”

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