13 “Look, I’ve seen everything; I’ve listened carefully and I understand. 2 What you know, I know, too; I’m not inferior to you. 3 But I want to talk to the Almighty; and I’m determined to argue my case[a] before God.”
Job Accuses His Friends
4 “But as for you, you whitewash with lies; all of you are worthless quacks.[b] 5 I wish you’d all just shut up. Then at least you would appear to be wise.
6 “Now listen to my dispute! Pay attention to my arguments.[c] 7 Why do you speak falsely on God’s behalf and speak deceitfully[d] about him? 8 Will you show partiality to him?[e] Will you plead God’s case? 9 Will things go well for you under his cross-examination? Can you lie to him, as you would to a human being?[f]
10 “He will be sure to rebuke you, if you show partiality[g] in secret. 11 His splendor will petrify you with terror, paralyzing you with fear, won’t it? 12 Your maxims are just worthless proverbs; your defensive arguments are made of clay.”
Job Resolves to Present His Case
13 “Don’t talk to me! It’s my turn to speak; then whatever happens, happens. 14 Why shouldn’t I bite my flesh or take my life in my hands? 15 Even though he kills me, I’ll continue to hope in him. At least I’ll be able to argue my case[h] to his face! 16 I have this as my salvation: the godless person won’t be appearing before him. 17 Pay attention[i] to what I have to say and listen to my testimony with your own ears.”
Job Presents His Conditions
18 “Look, now! I’ve prepared my case for court.[j] I know that I’m going to win.[k] 19 Who can oppose me? If they do, I’ll be silent and die. 20 Grant me only two things as you deal with me; then I won’t hide from you.[l] 21 Withdraw your hand far from me and keep me from being petrified with terror. 22 Then call and I’ll answer, or let me speak and then you reply to me!”
Job Presents Himself for Cross-Examination
23 “How many of my iniquities and sins have you counted? Show me my transgression and sin. 24 Why do you hide your face and regard me as your enemy? 25 Are you a god who would make a leaf tremble or who would prosecute a dry straw? 26 You’ve accused me of bitter things; you’ve caused me to reap[m] the sins of my youth. 27 You’ve locked my feet in stocks; you watch all my steps; You’ve limited where I can walk.[n] 28 So I’m a man who wears out like something rotten, like a garment that has become moth-eaten.”
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