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Eliphaz’s Second Response to Job

15 Then[a] Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said,

“Should the wise answer with windy knowledge,
and should he fill his stomach with the east wind?
Should he argue in talk that is not profitable
or in words with which he cannot do good?
What is worse,[b] you yourself[c] are doing away with fear,
and you are lessening meditation before[d] God.
For your iniquity teaches your mouth,
and you choose the tongue of the crafty.
Your mouth condemns you, and not I;
and your lips testify against you.
“Were you born the firstborn of the human race?
And were you brought forth before[e] the hills?
Have you listened in God’s confidential discussion?
And do you limit wisdom to yourself?
What do you know that we do not know?
What do you understand that is not clear to us?
10 Both the gray-haired and the old are among us—
those older than your father.[f]
11 “Are the consolations of God too small for you,
a word spoken gently with you?
12 Why does your heart carry you away?
And why do your eyes flash,
13 that you turn your spirit against God,
and you let such words go out of your mouth?
14 “What is a human being, that he can be clean,
or[g] that one born of a woman can be righteous?
15 Look, he does not trust his holy ones,
and the heavens are not clean in his eyes.
16 How much less[h] he who is abominable and corrupt,[i]
a man drinking wickedness like water.
17 “I will show you, listen to me;
and what I have seen, I will tell[j]
18 what wise men have told,
and they have not hidden that which is from their ancestors,
19 to whom alone[k] the land was given,
and no stranger passed through their midst.
20 “All of the wicked one’s days he is writhing,
even[l] through the number of years that are laid up for the tyrant.
21 Sounds of terror are in his ears;
in prosperity the destroyer will come against him.
22 He cannot trust that he will return[m] from darkness,
and he himself[n] is destined for the sword.
23 “He is wandering for bread, saying, ‘Where is it?’
He knows that a day of darkness is ready at hand.[o]
24 Anguish and distress terrify him;
they[p] overpower him like a king ready for the battle.
25 Because he stretched out his hand against God,
and he was arrogant to Shaddai;
26 he stubbornly[q] runs against him
with his thick-bossed shield.[r]
27 “Because he has covered his face with his fat
and has gathered fat upon his loins,
28 he will dwell[s] in desolate cities,
in houses that they should not inhabit,
which are destined for rubble.
29 He will not become rich, and his wealth will not endure,
and their possessions will not stretch across the earth.[t]
30 “He will not escape from darkness;
a flame will dry up his new shoot,
and by the wind of his mouth he shall be removed.
31 Let him not trust in emptiness—he will be deceiving himself—
for worthlessness will be his recompense.
32 It will be paid in full before his time,[u]
and his branch will not flourish.
33 “He will shake off his unripe fruit like the vine,
and he will cast off his blossom like the olive tree;
34 for the company of the godless is barren,
and fire consumes the tents of those who accept bribes.
35 They conceive trouble and bring forth mischief,
and their womb prepares deceit.”


  1. Job 15:1 Hebrew “And”
  2. Job 15:4 Literally “Also,” or “Even”
  3. Job 15:4 Emphatic personal pronoun
  4. Job 15:4 Literally “to the faces of”
  5. Job 15:7 Literally “to the faces of”
  6. Job 15:10 Literally “more aged than your father in days”
  7. Job 15:14 Or “and”
  8. Job 15:16 Literally “Also for,” or “Indeed for,” or “Indeed that”
  9. Job 15:16 Or “he who is corrupt”
  10. Job 15:17 Literally “and I will tell”
  11. Job 15:19 Literally “to them to alone them”
  12. Job 15:20 Hebrew “and”
  13. Job 15:22 Literally “He cannot trust to return,” or “He is not certain to return,” or “He cannot be sure to return” (compare NJPS)
  14. Job 15:22 Emphatic personal pronoun
  15. Job 15:23 Hebrew “at his hand”; the meaning seems to be, “his ruin is certain”
  16. Job 15:24 Hebrew “it”
  17. Job 15:26 Literally “with neck”
  18. Job 15:26 Literally “with the thickness of the boss of his shield”
  19. Job 15:28 Hebrew “and he will dwell”
  20. Job 15:29 See HCSB, ESV; or “will not reach to the earth”; perhaps “his possessions will not go to the underworld”
  21. Job 15:32 Literally “in not his day,” or “without his day”