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Job 34 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

34 Elihu continued,

“Hear what I’m saying, you wise men.
    Listen to me, you who have learned so much.
Our tongues tell us what tastes good and what doesn’t.
    And our ears tell us what’s true and what isn’t.
So let’s choose for ourselves what is right.
    Let’s learn together what is good.

“Job says, ‘I’m not guilty of doing anything wrong.
    But God doesn’t treat me fairly.
Even though I’m right,
    he thinks I’m a liar.
Even though I’m not guilty,
    his arrows give me wounds that can’t be healed.’
Is there anyone like Job?
    He accuses God as easily as he drinks water.
He’s a companion of those who do evil.
    He spends his time with sinful people.
He asks, ‘What good is it
    to try to please God?’

10 “So listen to me, you men who have understanding.
    God would never do what is evil.
    The Mighty One would never do what is wrong.
11 He pays back everyone for what they’ve done.
    He gives them exactly what they should get.
12 It isn’t possible for God to do wrong.
    The Mighty One would never treat people unfairly.
13 Who appointed him to rule over the earth?
    Who put him in charge of the whole world?
14 If he really wanted to,
    he could hold back his spirit and breath.
15 Then everyone would die together.
    They would return to the dust.

16 “Job, if you have understanding, listen to me.
    Pay attention to what I’m saying.
17 Can someone who hates to be fair govern?
    Will you bring charges against the holy and mighty God?
18 He says to kings, ‘You are worthless.’
    He says to nobles, ‘You are evil.’
19 He doesn’t favor princes.
    He treats rich people and poor people the same.
    His hands created all of them.
20 They die suddenly in the middle of the night.
    God strikes them down, and they pass away.
    Even people who are mighty are removed, but not by human hands.

21 “His eyes see how people live.
    He watches every step they take.
22 There is no deep shadow or total darkness
    where those who do what is evil can hide.
23 God doesn’t need to bring charges against anyone.
    He knows they are guilty.
    So he doesn’t need to have them appear in his court to be judged.
24 He destroys the mighty without asking them questions in court.
    Then he sets others up in their places.
25 He knows what they do.
    So he crushes them during the night.
26 He punishes them for the sins they commit.
    He does it where everyone can see them.
27 That’s because they turned away from following him.
    They didn’t have respect for anything he does.
28 They caused poor people to cry out to him.
    He heard the cries of those who were in need.
29 But if he remains silent, who can judge him?
    If he turns his face away, who can see him?
He rules over individual people and nations alike.
30     He keeps those who are ungodly from ruling.
    He keeps them from laying traps for others.

31 “Someone might say to God,
    ‘I’m guilty of sinning,
    but I won’t do it anymore.
32 Show me my sins that I’m not aware of.
    If I’ve done what is wrong,
    I won’t do it again.’
33 But you refuse to turn away from your sins.
    So God won’t treat you the way you want to be treated.
You must decide, Job. I can’t do it for you.
    So tell me what you know.

34 “You men who have understanding have spoken.
    You wise men who hear me have said to me,
35 ‘Job doesn’t know what he’s talking about.
    The things he has said don’t make any sense.’
36 I wish Job would be given the hardest test possible!
    He answered like someone who is evil.
37 To his sin he adds even more sin.
    He claps his hands and makes fun of us.
    He multiplies his words against God.”

New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Job 34 New International Version (NIV)

34 Then Elihu said:

“Hear my words, you wise men;
    listen to me, you men of learning.
For the ear tests words
    as the tongue tastes food.
Let us discern for ourselves what is right;
    let us learn together what is good.

“Job says, ‘I am innocent,
    but God denies me justice.
Although I am right,
    I am considered a liar;
although I am guiltless,
    his arrow inflicts an incurable wound.’
Is there anyone like Job,
    who drinks scorn like water?
He keeps company with evildoers;
    he associates with the wicked.
For he says, ‘There is no profit
    in trying to please God.’

10 “So listen to me, you men of understanding.
    Far be it from God to do evil,
    from the Almighty to do wrong.
11 He repays everyone for what they have done;
    he brings on them what their conduct deserves.
12 It is unthinkable that God would do wrong,
    that the Almighty would pervert justice.
13 Who appointed him over the earth?
    Who put him in charge of the whole world?
14 If it were his intention
    and he withdrew his spirit[a] and breath,
15 all humanity would perish together
    and mankind would return to the dust.

16 “If you have understanding, hear this;
    listen to what I say.
17 Can someone who hates justice govern?
    Will you condemn the just and mighty One?
18 Is he not the One who says to kings, ‘You are worthless,’
    and to nobles, ‘You are wicked,’
19 who shows no partiality to princes
    and does not favor the rich over the poor,
    for they are all the work of his hands?
20 They die in an instant, in the middle of the night;
    the people are shaken and they pass away;
    the mighty are removed without human hand.

21 “His eyes are on the ways of mortals;
    he sees their every step.
22 There is no deep shadow, no utter darkness,
    where evildoers can hide.
23 God has no need to examine people further,
    that they should come before him for judgment.
24 Without inquiry he shatters the mighty
    and sets up others in their place.
25 Because he takes note of their deeds,
    he overthrows them in the night and they are crushed.
26 He punishes them for their wickedness
    where everyone can see them,
27 because they turned from following him
    and had no regard for any of his ways.
28 They caused the cry of the poor to come before him,
    so that he heard the cry of the needy.
29 But if he remains silent, who can condemn him?
    If he hides his face, who can see him?
Yet he is over individual and nation alike,
30     to keep the godless from ruling,
    from laying snares for the people.

31 “Suppose someone says to God,
    ‘I am guilty but will offend no more.
32 Teach me what I cannot see;
    if I have done wrong, I will not do so again.’
33 Should God then reward you on your terms,
    when you refuse to repent?
You must decide, not I;
    so tell me what you know.

34 “Men of understanding declare,
    wise men who hear me say to me,
35 ‘Job speaks without knowledge;
    his words lack insight.’
36 Oh, that Job might be tested to the utmost
    for answering like a wicked man!
37 To his sin he adds rebellion;
    scornfully he claps his hands among us
    and multiplies his words against God.”

Footnotes:

  1. Job 34:14 Or Spirit
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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