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22 Another address from Eliphaz:

“Is mere man of any worth to God? Even the wisest is of value only to himself! Is it any pleasure to the Almighty if you are righteous? Would it be any gain to him if you were perfect? Is it because you are good that he is punishing you? Not at all! It is because of your wickedness! Your sins are endless!

“For instance, you must have refused to loan money to needy friends unless they gave you all their clothing as a pledge—yes, you must have stripped them to the bone. You must have refused water to the thirsty and bread to the starving. But no doubt you gave men of importance anything they wanted and let the wealthy live wherever they chose. You sent widows away without helping them and broke the arms of orphans. 10-11 That is why you are now surrounded by traps and sudden fears, and darkness and waves of horror.

12 “God is so great—higher than the heavens, higher than the stars. 13 But you reply, ‘That is why he can’t see what I am doing! How can he judge through the thick darkness? 14 For thick clouds swirl about him so that he cannot see us. He is way up there, walking on the vault of heaven.’

15-16 “Don’t you realize that those treading the ancient paths of sin are snatched away in youth, and the foundations of their lives washed out forever? 17 For they said to God, ‘Go away, God! What can you do for us?’ 18 (God forbid that I should say a thing like that.) Yet they forgot that he had filled their homes with good things. 19 And now the righteous shall see them destroyed; the innocent shall laugh the wicked to scorn. 20 ‘See,’ they will say, ‘the last of our enemies have been destroyed in the fire.’

21 “Quit quarreling with God! Agree with him and you will have peace at last! His favor will surround you if you will only admit that you were wrong. 22 Listen to his instructions and store them in your heart. 23 If you return to God and put right all the wrong in your home, then you will be restored. 24 If you give up your lust for money and throw your gold away, 25 then the Almighty himself shall be your treasure; he will be your precious silver!

26 “Then you will delight yourself in the Lord and look up to God. 27 You will pray to him, and he will hear you, and you will fulfill all your promises to him. 28 Whatever you wish will happen! And the light of heaven will shine upon the road ahead of you. 29 If you are attacked and knocked down, you will know that there is someone who will lift you up again. Yes, he will save the humble 30 and help even sinners by your pure hands.”

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