Job’s Discourse on Wisdom

28 “Surely there is a mine for silver,
And a place where gold is refined.
Iron is taken from the [a]earth,
And copper is smelted from ore.
Man puts an end to darkness,
And searches every recess
For ore in the darkness and the shadow of death.
He breaks open a shaft away from people;
In places forgotten by feet
They hang far away from men;
They swing to and fro.
As for the earth, from it comes bread,
But underneath it is turned up as by fire;
Its stones are the source of sapphires,
And it contains gold dust.
That path no bird knows,
Nor has the falcon’s eye seen it.
The [b]proud lions have not trodden it,
Nor has the fierce lion passed over it.
He puts his hand on the flint;
He overturns the mountains [c]at the roots.
10 He cuts out channels in the rocks,
And his eye sees every precious thing.
11 He dams up the streams from trickling;
What is hidden he brings forth to light.

12 “But(A) where can wisdom be found?
And where is the place of understanding?
13 Man does not know its (B)value,
Nor is it found in the land of the living.
14 (C)The deep says, ‘It is not in me’;
And the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’
15 It (D)cannot be purchased for gold,
Nor can silver be weighed for its price.
16 It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir,
In precious onyx or sapphire.
17 Neither (E)gold nor crystal can equal it,
Nor can it be exchanged for [d]jewelry of fine gold.
18 No mention shall be made of [e]coral or quartz,
For the price of wisdom is above (F)rubies.
19 The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it,
Nor can it be valued in pure (G)gold.

20 “From(H) where then does wisdom come?
And where is the place of understanding?
21 It is hidden from the eyes of all living,
And concealed from the birds of the [f]air.
22 (I)Destruction[g] and Death say,
‘We have heard a report about it with our ears.’
23 God understands its way,
And He knows its place.
24 For He looks to the ends of the earth,
And (J)sees under the whole heavens,
25 (K)To establish a weight for the wind,
And apportion the waters by measure.
26 When He (L)made a law for the rain,
And a path for the thunderbolt,
27 Then He saw [h]wisdom and declared it;
He prepared it, indeed, He searched it out.
28 And to man He said,
‘Behold, (M)the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom,
And to depart from evil is understanding.’ ”


  1. Job 28:2 Lit. dust
  2. Job 28:8 Lit. sons of pride, figurative of the great lions
  3. Job 28:9 At the base
  4. Job 28:17 vessels
  5. Job 28:18 Heb. ramoth
  6. Job 28:21 heaven
  7. Job 28:22 Heb. Abaddon
  8. Job 28:27 Lit. it

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