Job Replies: The LORD Has Done This
1Then Job answered and said:
2“No doubt you are the people,
and wisdom will die with you.
3But I have understanding as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
Who does not know such things as these?
4I am a laughing-stock to my friends;
I, who called to God and he answered me,
a just and blameless man, am a laughing-stock.
5In the thought of one who is at ease there is contempt for misfortune;
it is ready for those whose feet slip.
6The tents of robbers are at peace,
and those who provoke God are secure,
who bring their god in their hand.12:6 The meaning of the Hebrew is uncertain
7“But ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you;
8or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you;12:8 Or or speak to the earth, and it will teach you
and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
9Who among all these does not know
that the hand of the LORD has done this?
10In his hand is the life of every living thing
and the breath of all mankind.
11Does not the ear test words
as the palate tastes food?
12Wisdom is with the aged,
and understanding in length of days.
13“With God12:13 Hebrew him are wisdom and might;
he has counsel and understanding.
14If he tears down, none can rebuild;
if he shuts a man in, none can open.
15If he withholds the waters, they dry up;
if he sends them out, they overwhelm the land.
16With him are strength and sound wisdom;
the deceived and the deceiver are his.
17He leads counsellors away stripped,
and judges he makes fools.
18He looses the bonds of kings
and binds a waistcloth on their hips.
19He leads priests away stripped
and overthrows the mighty.
20He deprives of speech those who are trusted
and takes away the discernment of the elders.
21He pours contempt on princes
and loosens the belt of the strong.
22He uncovers the deeps out of darkness
and brings deep darkness to light.
23He makes nations great, and he destroys them;
he enlarges nations, and leads them away.
24He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth
and makes them wander in a trackless waste.
25They grope in the dark without light,
and he makes them stagger like a drunken man.
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