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Job 8 The Message (MSG)

Bildad’s Response

Does God Mess Up?

1-7 Bildad from Shuhah was next to speak:

“How can you keep on talking like this?
    You’re talking nonsense, and noisy nonsense at that.
Does God mess up?
    Does God Almighty ever get things backward?
It’s plain that your children sinned against him—
    otherwise, why would God have punished them?
Here’s what you must do—and don’t put it off any longer:
    Get down on your knees before God Almighty.
If you’re as innocent and upright as you say,
    it’s not too late—he’ll come running;
    he’ll set everything right again, reestablish your fortunes.
Even though you’re not much right now,
    you’ll end up better than ever.

To Hang Your Life from One Thin Thread

8-19 “Put the question to our ancestors,
    study what they learned from their ancestors.
For we’re newcomers at this, with a lot to learn,
    and not too long to learn it.
So why not let the ancients teach you, tell you what’s what,
    instruct you in what they knew from experience?
Can mighty pine trees grow tall without soil?
    Can luscious tomatoes flourish without water?
Blossoming flowers look great before they’re cut or picked,
    but without soil or water they wither more quickly than grass.
That’s what happens to all who forget God—
    all their hopes come to nothing.
They hang their life from one thin thread,
    they hitch their fate to a spider web.
One jiggle and the thread breaks,
    one jab and the web collapses.
Or they’re like weeds springing up in the sunshine,
    invading the garden,
Spreading everywhere, overtaking the flowers,
    getting a foothold even in the rocks.
But when the gardener rips them out by the roots,
    the garden doesn’t miss them one bit.
The sooner the godless are gone, the better;
    then good plants can grow in their place.

20-22 “There’s no way that God will reject a good person,
    and there is no way he’ll help a bad one.
God will let you laugh again;
    you’ll raise the roof with shouts of joy,
With your enemies thoroughly discredited,
    their house of cards collapsed.”

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson

Job 8 New International Version (NIV)

Bildad

Then Bildad the Shuhite replied:

“How long will you say such things?
    Your words are a blustering wind.
Does God pervert justice?
    Does the Almighty pervert what is right?
When your children sinned against him,
    he gave them over to the penalty of their sin.
But if you will seek God earnestly
    and plead with the Almighty,
if you are pure and upright,
    even now he will rouse himself on your behalf
    and restore you to your prosperous state.
Your beginnings will seem humble,
    so prosperous will your future be.

“Ask the former generation
    and find out what their ancestors learned,
for we were born only yesterday and know nothing,
    and our days on earth are but a shadow.
10 Will they not instruct you and tell you?
    Will they not bring forth words from their understanding?
11 Can papyrus grow tall where there is no marsh?
    Can reeds thrive without water?
12 While still growing and uncut,
    they wither more quickly than grass.
13 Such is the destiny of all who forget God;
    so perishes the hope of the godless.
14 What they trust in is fragile[a];
    what they rely on is a spider’s web.
15 They lean on the web, but it gives way;
    they cling to it, but it does not hold.
16 They are like a well-watered plant in the sunshine,
    spreading its shoots over the garden;
17 it entwines its roots around a pile of rocks
    and looks for a place among the stones.
18 But when it is torn from its spot,
    that place disowns it and says, ‘I never saw you.’
19 Surely its life withers away,
    and[b] from the soil other plants grow.

20 “Surely God does not reject one who is blameless
    or strengthen the hands of evildoers.
21 He will yet fill your mouth with laughter
    and your lips with shouts of joy.
22 Your enemies will be clothed in shame,
    and the tents of the wicked will be no more.”

Footnotes:

  1. Job 8:14 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
  2. Job 8:19 Or Surely all the joy it has / is that
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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