2 “My complaint today is still a bitter one, and I try hard not to groan aloud. 3 If only I knew where to find God, I would go to his court. 4 I would lay out my case and present my arguments. 5 Then I would listen to his reply and understand what he says to me. 6 Would he use his great power to argue with me? No, he would give me a fair hearing. 7 Honest people can reason with him, so I would be forever acquitted by my judge. 8 I go east, but he is not there. I go west, but I cannot find him. 9 I do not see him in the north, for he is hidden. I look to the south, but he is concealed.
10 “But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold. 11 For I have stayed on God’s paths; I have followed his ways and not turned aside. 12 I have not departed from his commands, but have treasured his words more than daily food. 13 But once he has made his decision, who can change his mind? Whatever he wants to do, he does. 14 So he will do to me whatever he has planned. He controls my destiny. 15 No wonder I am so terrified in his presence. When I think of it, terror grips me. 16 God has made me sick at heart; the Almighty has terrified me. 17 Darkness is all around me; thick, impenetrable darkness is everywhere.
Job Asks Why the Wicked Are Not Punished
24 “Why doesn’t the Almighty bring the wicked to judgment? Why must the godly wait for him in vain? 2 Evil people steal land by moving the boundary markers. They steal livestock and put them in their own pastures. 3 They take the orphan’s donkey and demand the widow’s ox as security for a loan. 4 The poor are pushed off the path; the needy must hide together for safety. 5 Like wild donkeys in the wilderness, the poor must spend all their time looking for food, searching even in the desert for food for their children. 6 They harvest a field they do not own, and they glean in the vineyards of the wicked. 7 All night they lie naked in the cold, without clothing or covering. 8 They are soaked by mountain showers, and they huddle against the rocks for want of a home.
9 “The wicked snatch a widow’s child from her breast, taking the baby as security for a loan. 10 The poor must go about naked, without any clothing. They harvest food for others while they themselves are starving. 11 They press out olive oil without being allowed to taste it, and they tread in the winepress as they suffer from thirst. 12 The groans of the dying rise from the city, and the wounded cry for help, yet God ignores their moaning.
13 “Wicked people rebel against the light. They refuse to acknowledge its ways or stay in its paths. 14 The murderer rises in the early dawn to kill the poor and needy; at night he is a thief. 15 The adulterer waits for the twilight, saying, ‘No one will see me then.’ He hides his face so no one will know him. 16 Thieves break into houses at night and sleep in the daytime. They are not acquainted with the light. 17 The black night is their morning. They ally themselves with the terrors of the darkness.
18 “But they disappear like foam down a river. Everything they own is cursed, and they are afraid to enter their own vineyards. 19 The grave[a] consumes sinners just as drought and heat consume snow. 20 Their own mothers will forget them. Maggots will find them sweet to eat. No one will remember them. Wicked people are broken like a tree in the storm. 21 They cheat the woman who has no son to help her. They refuse to help the needy widow.
22 “God, in his power, drags away the rich. They may rise high, but they have no assurance of life. 23 They may be allowed to live in security, but God is always watching them. 24 And though they are great now, in a moment they will be gone like all others, cut off like heads of grain. 25 Can anyone claim otherwise? Who can prove me wrong?”
Bildad’s Third Response to Job
25 Then Bildad the Shuhite replied:
2 “God is powerful and dreadful. He enforces peace in the heavens. 3 Who is able to count his heavenly army? Doesn’t his light shine on all the earth? 4 How can a mortal be innocent before God? Can anyone born of a woman be pure? 5 God is more glorious than the moon; he shines brighter than the stars. 6 In comparison, people are maggots; we mortals are mere worms.”
Job’s Ninth Speech: A Response to Bildad
26 Then Job spoke again:
2 “How you have helped the powerless! How you have saved the weak! 3 How you have enlightened my stupidity! What wise advice you have offered! 4 Where have you gotten all these wise sayings? Whose spirit speaks through you?
5 “The dead tremble— those who live beneath the waters. 6 The underworld[b] is naked in God’s presence. The place of destruction[c] is uncovered. 7 God stretches the northern sky over empty space and hangs the earth on nothing. 8 He wraps the rain in his thick clouds, and the clouds don’t burst with the weight. 9 He covers the face of the moon,[d] shrouding it with his clouds. 10 He created the horizon when he separated the waters; he set the boundary between day and night. 11 The foundations of heaven tremble; they shudder at his rebuke. 12 By his power the sea grew calm. By his skill he crushed the great sea monster.[e] 13 His Spirit made the heavens beautiful, and his power pierced the gliding serpent. 14 These are just the beginning of all that he does, merely a whisper of his power. Who, then, can comprehend the thunder of his power?”
Job’s Final Speech
27 Job continued speaking:
2 “I vow by the living God, who has taken away my rights, by the Almighty who has embittered my soul— 3 As long as I live, while I have breath from God, 4 my lips will speak no evil, and my tongue will speak no lies. 5 I will never concede that you are right; I will defend my integrity until I die. 6 I will maintain my innocence without wavering. My conscience is clear for as long as I live.
7 “May my enemy be punished like the wicked, my adversary like those who do evil. 8 For what hope do the godless have when God cuts them off and takes away their life? 9 Will God listen to their cry when trouble comes upon them? 10 Can they take delight in the Almighty? Can they call to God at any time? 11 I will teach you about God’s power. I will not conceal anything concerning the Almighty. 12 But you have seen all this, yet you say all these useless things to me.
13 “This is what the wicked will receive from God; this is their inheritance from the Almighty. 14 They may have many children, but the children will die in war or starve to death. 15 Those who survive will die of a plague, and not even their widows will mourn them.
16 “Evil people may have piles of money and may store away mounds of clothing. 17 But the righteous will wear that clothing, and the innocent will divide that money. 18 The wicked build houses as fragile as a spider’s web,[f] as flimsy as a shelter made of branches. 19 The wicked go to bed rich but wake to find that all their wealth is gone. 20 Terror overwhelms them like a flood, and they are blown away in the storms of the night. 21 The east wind carries them away, and they are gone. It sweeps them away. 22 It whirls down on them without mercy. They struggle to flee from its power. 23 But everyone jeers at them and mocks them.
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to choose a monthly or yearly subscription, and then enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate, click the button below.
Upgrade, and get the most out of your new account. An integrated digital Bible study library - including complete notes from the Believer's Bible Commentary and the Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible (NIV and NRSV) - is just a step away! Try it free for 30 days.