Job 21 Amplified Bible (AMP)
Job’s Dialogue Regarding the Wicked
21 Then Job answered and said,
“Listen carefully to my speech,
And let this be the consolation.
“Bear with me, and I also will speak;
And after I have spoken, you may [continue to] mock [me].
“As for me, is my complaint to man or about him?
And why should I not be impatient and my spirit troubled?
“Look at me and be astonished and appalled;
And put your hand over your mouth.
“Even when I remember, I am troubled and afraid;
Horror and trembling take hold of my flesh.
“Why do the wicked still live,
Become old, and become mighty in power?
“Their children and descendants are established with them in their sight,
And their offspring before their eyes.
“Their houses are safe from fear;
And the rod of God is not on them.
“His bull breeds and does not fail;
His cow calves and does not miscarry.
“They send forth their little ones like a flock,
And their children skip about.
“They lift up their voices and sing to the tambourine and the lyre
And rejoice to the sound of the flute.
“They fully enjoy their days in prosperity,
And so go down to Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead) in a [peaceful] moment.
“Yet they say to God, ‘Depart from us,
For we do not desire the knowledge of Your ways.
‘Who [and what] is the Almighty, that we should serve Him?
And what would we gain if we plead with Him?’
“But notice, the prosperity of the wicked is not in their hand (in their power);
The counsel of the wicked [and the mystery of God’s dealings with the ungodly] is far from my comprehension.
“How often [then] is it that the lamp of the wicked is put out,
And that their disaster falls on them?
Does God distribute pain and destruction and sorrow [to them] in His anger?
“Are they like straw before the wind,
And like chaff that the storm steals and carries away?
“You say, ‘God stores away [the punishment of] man’s wickedness for his children.’
Let God repay him so that he may know and experience it.
“Let his own eyes see his destruction,
And let him drink of the wrath of the Almighty.
“For what pleasure does he have in his house and family after he is dead,
When the number of his months [of life] is cut off?
“Can anyone teach God knowledge,
Seeing that He judges those on high?
“One dies in his full strength,
Being wholly at ease and quiet and satisfied;
His pails are full of milk [his sides are filled out with fat],
And the marrow of his bones is moist,
Whereas another dies with a bitter soul,
Never even tasting pleasure or good fortune.
“Together they lie down in the dust,
And the worms cover them.
“Behold, I know your thoughts,
And the plots by which you would wrong me.
“For you say, ‘Where is the house of the noble man?
And where is the tent, the dwelling place of the wicked?’
“Have you not asked those who travel this way,
And do you not recognize their witness?
“That evil men are [now] reserved for the day of disaster and destruction,
They will be led away on the day of [God’s] wrath?
“But who will confront him with his actions and rebuke him face to face,
And who will repay him for what he has done?
“When he is carried to his grave,
A guard will keep watch over his tomb.
“The [dirt] clods of the valley are sweet to him [and gently cover him],
Moreover, all men will follow after him [to a grave],
While countless ones go before him.
“How then can you vainly comfort me with empty words,
Since your answers remain untrue?”
Job 21 New International Version (NIV)
21 Then Job replied:
2 “Listen carefully to my words;
let this be the consolation you give me.
3 Bear with me while I speak,
and after I have spoken, mock on.
4 “Is my complaint directed to a human being?
Why should I not be impatient?
5 Look at me and be appalled;
clap your hand over your mouth.
6 When I think about this, I am terrified;
trembling seizes my body.
7 Why do the wicked live on,
growing old and increasing in power?
8 They see their children established around them,
their offspring before their eyes.
9 Their homes are safe and free from fear;
the rod of God is not on them.
10 Their bulls never fail to breed;
their cows calve and do not miscarry.
11 They send forth their children as a flock;
their little ones dance about.
12 They sing to the music of timbrel and lyre;
they make merry to the sound of the pipe.
13 They spend their years in prosperity
and go down to the grave in peace.
14 Yet they say to God, ‘Leave us alone!
We have no desire to know your ways.
15 Who is the Almighty, that we should serve him?
What would we gain by praying to him?’
16 But their prosperity is not in their own hands,
so I stand aloof from the plans of the wicked.
17 “Yet how often is the lamp of the wicked snuffed out?
How often does calamity come upon them,
the fate God allots in his anger?
18 How often are they like straw before the wind,
like chaff swept away by a gale?
19 It is said, ‘God stores up the punishment of the wicked for their children.’
Let him repay the wicked, so that they themselves will experience it!
20 Let their own eyes see their destruction;
let them drink the cup of the wrath of the Almighty.
21 For what do they care about the families they leave behind
when their allotted months come to an end?
22 “Can anyone teach knowledge to God,
since he judges even the highest?
23 One person dies in full vigor,
completely secure and at ease,
24 well nourished in body,
bones rich with marrow.
25 Another dies in bitterness of soul,
never having enjoyed anything good.
26 Side by side they lie in the dust,
and worms cover them both.
27 “I know full well what you are thinking,
the schemes by which you would wrong me.
28 You say, ‘Where now is the house of the great,
the tents where the wicked lived?’
29 Have you never questioned those who travel?
Have you paid no regard to their accounts—
30 that the wicked are spared from the day of calamity,
that they are delivered from the day of wrath?
31 Who denounces their conduct to their face?
Who repays them for what they have done?
32 They are carried to the grave,
and watch is kept over their tombs.
33 The soil in the valley is sweet to them;
everyone follows after them,
and a countless throng goes before them.
34 “So how can you console me with your nonsense?
Nothing is left of your answers but falsehood!”