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24 “Why doesn’t the Mighty One set a time for judging sinful people?
    Why do those who know him have to keep waiting for that day?
People move their neighbor’s boundary stones.
    They steal their neighbor’s flocks.
They take away the donkeys
    that belong to children whose fathers have died.
    They take a widow’s ox until she has paid what she owes.
They push those who are needy out of their way.
    They force all the poor people in the land to go into hiding.
The poor are like wild donkeys in the desert.
    They have to go around looking for food.
    The dry and empty land provides the only food for their children.
The poor go to the fields and get a little grain.
    They gather up what is left in the vineyards of sinners.
The poor don’t have any clothes. So they spend the night naked.
    They don’t have anything to cover themselves in the cold.
They are soaked by mountain rains.
    They hug the rocks because they don’t have anything to keep them warm.
Children whose fathers have died
    are torn away from their mothers.
    A poor person’s baby is taken away to pay back what is owed.
10 The poor don’t have any clothes. They go around naked.
    They carry bundles of grain, but they still go hungry.
11 They work very hard as they crush olives.
    They stomp on grapes in winepresses,
    but they are still thirsty.
12 The groans of those who are dying are heard from the city.
    Those who are wounded cry out for help.
    But God doesn’t charge anyone with doing what is wrong.

13 “Some people hate it when daylight comes.
    In the daytime they never walk outside.
14 When daylight is gone, murderers get up.
    They kill poor people and those who are in need.
    In the night they sneak around like robbers.
15 Those who commit adultery wait until the sun goes down.
    They think, ‘No one will see us.’
    They keep their faces hidden.
16 In the dark, thieves break into houses.
    But by day they shut themselves in.
    They don’t want anything to do with the light.
17 Midnight is like morning to them.
    The terrors of darkness are their friends.

18 “But sinners are like bubbles on the surface of water.
    Their share of the land is under God’s curse.
    So no one goes to their vineyards.
19 Melted snow disappears when the air is hot and dry.
    And sinners disappear when they go down into their graves.
20 Even their mothers forget them.
    The worms in their graves eat them up.
No one remembers sinful people anymore.
    They are cut down like trees.
21 They mistreat women who aren’t able to have children.
    They aren’t kind to widows.
22 But God is powerful.
    He even drags away people who are strong.
When he rises up against them,
    they can never be sure they are safe.
23 God might let them rest and feel secure.
    But his eyes see how they live.
24 For a little while they are honored.
    Then they are gone.
They are brought low.
    And they die like everyone else.
    They are cut off like heads of grain.

25 “Who can prove that what I’m saying is wrong?
    Who can prove that my words aren’t true?”

24 “Why does the Almighty not set times(A) for judgment?(B)
    Why must those who know him look in vain for such days?(C)
There are those who move boundary stones;(D)
    they pasture flocks they have stolen.(E)
They drive away the orphan’s donkey
    and take the widow’s ox in pledge.(F)
They thrust the needy(G) from the path
    and force all the poor(H) of the land into hiding.(I)
Like wild donkeys(J) in the desert,
    the poor go about their labor(K) of foraging food;
    the wasteland(L) provides food for their children.
They gather fodder(M) in the fields
    and glean in the vineyards(N) of the wicked.(O)
Lacking clothes, they spend the night naked;
    they have nothing to cover themselves in the cold.(P)
They are drenched(Q) by mountain rains
    and hug(R) the rocks for lack of shelter.(S)
The fatherless(T) child is snatched(U) from the breast;
    the infant of the poor is seized(V) for a debt.(W)
10 Lacking clothes, they go about naked;(X)
    they carry the sheaves,(Y) but still go hungry.
11 They crush olives among the terraces[a];
    they tread the winepresses,(Z) yet suffer thirst.(AA)
12 The groans of the dying rise from the city,
    and the souls of the wounded cry out for help.(AB)
    But God charges no one with wrongdoing.(AC)

13 “There are those who rebel against the light,(AD)
    who do not know its ways
    or stay in its paths.(AE)
14 When daylight is gone, the murderer rises up,
    kills(AF) the poor and needy,(AG)
    and in the night steals forth like a thief.(AH)
15 The eye of the adulterer(AI) watches for dusk;(AJ)
    he thinks, ‘No eye will see me,’(AK)
    and he keeps his face concealed.
16 In the dark, thieves break into houses,(AL)
    but by day they shut themselves in;
    they want nothing to do with the light.(AM)
17 For all of them, midnight is their morning;
    they make friends with the terrors(AN) of darkness.(AO)

18 “Yet they are foam(AP) on the surface of the water;(AQ)
    their portion of the land is cursed,(AR)
    so that no one goes to the vineyards.(AS)
19 As heat and drought snatch away the melted snow,(AT)
    so the grave(AU) snatches away those who have sinned.
20 The womb forgets them,
    the worm(AV) feasts on them;(AW)
the wicked are no longer remembered(AX)
    but are broken like a tree.(AY)
21 They prey on the barren and childless woman,
    and to the widow they show no kindness.(AZ)
22 But God drags away the mighty by his power;(BA)
    though they become established,(BB) they have no assurance of life.(BC)
23 He may let them rest in a feeling of security,(BD)
    but his eyes(BE) are on their ways.(BF)
24 For a little while they are exalted, and then they are gone;(BG)
    they are brought low and gathered up like all others;(BH)
    they are cut off like heads of grain.(BI)

25 “If this is not so, who can prove me false
    and reduce my words to nothing?”(BJ)


  1. Job 24:11 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.