The New Revised Standard Version
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God’s Punishment of Sinners

16 Do not desire a multitude of worthlessa children,

and do not rejoice in ungodly offspring.

2 If they multiply, do not rejoice in them,

unless the fear of the Lord is in them.

3 Do not trust in their survival,

or rely on their numbers;b

for one can be better than a thousand,

and to die childless better than to have ungodly children.

4 For through one intelligent person a city can be filled with people,

but through a clan of outlaws it becomes desolate.

5 Many such things my eye has seen,

and my ear has heard things more striking than these.

6 In an assembly of sinners a fire is kindled,

and in a disobedient nation wrath blazes up.

7 He did not forgive the ancient giants

who revolted in their might.

8 He did not spare the neighbors of Lot,

whom he loathed on account of their arrogance.

9 He showed no pity on the doomed nation,

on those dispossessed because of their sins;c

10 or on the six hundred thousand foot soldiers

who assembled in their stubbornness.d

11 Even if there were only one stiff-necked person,

it would be a wonder if he remained unpunished.

For mercy and wrath are with the Lord;e

he is mighty to forgive—but he also pours out wrath.

12 Great as is his mercy, so also is his chastisement;

he judges a person according to his or her deeds.

13 The sinner will not escape with plunder,

and the patience of the godly will not be frustrated.

14 He makes room for every act of mercy;

everyone receives in accordance with his or her deeds.f

17 Do not say, “I am hidden from the Lord,

and who from on high has me in mind?

Among so many people I am unknown,

for what am I in a boundless creation?

18 Lo, heaven and the highest heaven,

the abyss and the earth, tremble at his visitation!g

19 The very mountains and the foundations of the earth

quiver and quake when he looks upon them.

20 But no human mind can grasp this,

and who can comprehend his ways?

21 Like a tempest that no one can see,

so most of his works are concealed.h

22 Who is to announce his acts of justice?

Or who can await them? For his decreei is far off.”j

23 Such are the thoughts of one devoid of understanding;

a senseless and misguided person thinks foolishly.


About The New Revised Standard Version

The original Revised Standard Version served as a standard for nearly forty years. The New Revised Standard Version with Apocrypha maintains the traditions of the older version with fresh new vocabulary and modern English construction.


Up to five hundred (500) verses of The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) Bible text may be quoted or reprinted without the express written permission of the publisher, provided that the verses quoted neither amount to a complete book of the Bible nor account for 50% or more of the written text of the total work in which they are quoted.

When the NRSV text is quoted, notice of copyright must appear on the title or copyright page of the work as follows:

The Scripture quotations contained herein are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, Copyright © 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A., and are used by permission. All rights reserved.

When quotations from the NRSV text are used in a non-saleable media, such as church bulletins, orders of service, posters, transparencies or similar media, the initials (NRSV) may be used at the end of each quotation.

Quotations or reprints in excess of five hundred (500) verses (as well as other permissions requests) must be approved in writing by the NRSV Permissions Office, The National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A., 475 Riverside Drive, New York, NY 10115-0050.

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