2 “How long will you torment my soul, And break me in pieces with words? 3 These ten times you have [a]reproached me; You are not ashamed that you [b]have wronged me. 4 And if indeed I have erred, My error remains with me. 5 If indeed you exalt yourselves against me, And plead my disgrace against me, 6 Know then that God has wronged me, And has surrounded me with His net.
7 “If I cry out concerning [c]wrong, I am not heard. If I cry aloud, there is no justice. 8 He has [d]fenced up my way, so that I cannot pass; And He has set darkness in my paths. 9 He has stripped me of my glory, And taken the crown from my head. 10 He breaks me down on every side, And I am gone; My hope He has uprooted like a tree. 11 He has also kindled His wrath against me, And He counts me as one of His enemies. 12 His troops come together And build up their road against me; They encamp all around my tent.
13 “He has removed my brothers far from me, And my acquaintances are completely estranged from me. 14 My relatives have failed, And my close friends have forgotten me. 15 Those who dwell in my house, and my maidservants, Count me as a stranger; I am an alien in their sight. 16 I call my servant, but he gives no answer; I beg him with my mouth. 17 My breath is offensive to my wife, And I am [e]repulsive to the children of my own body. 18 Even young children despise me; I arise, and they speak against me. 19 All my close friends abhor me, And those whom I love have turned against me. 20 My bone clings to my skin and to my flesh, And I have escaped by the skin of my teeth.
21 “Have pity on me, have pity on me, O you my friends, For the hand of God has struck me! 22 Why do you persecute me as God does, And are not satisfied with my flesh?
23 “Oh, that my words were written! Oh, that they were inscribed in a book! 24 That they were engraved on a rock With an iron pen and lead, forever! 25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth; 26 And after my skin is [f]destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God, 27 Whom I shall see for myself, And my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my [g]heart yearns within me! 28 If you should say, ‘How shall we persecute him?’— Since the root of the matter is found in me, 29 Be afraid of the sword for yourselves; For wrath brings the punishment of the sword, That you may know there is a judgment.”
Zophar’s Sermon on the Wicked Man
20 Then Zophar the Naamathite answered and said:
2 “Therefore my anxious thoughts make me answer, Because of the turmoil within me. 3 I have heard the rebuke [h]that reproaches me, And the spirit of my understanding causes me to answer.
4 “Do you not know this of old, Since man was placed on earth, 5 That the triumphing of the wicked is short, And the joy of the hypocrite is but for a moment? 6 Though his haughtiness mounts up to the heavens, And his head reaches to the clouds, 7 Yet he will perish forever like his own refuse; Those who have seen him will say, ‘Where is he?’ 8 He will fly away like a dream, and not be found; Yes, he will be chased away like a vision of the night. 9 The eye that saw him will see him no more, Nor will his place behold him anymore. 10 His children will seek the favor of the poor, And his hands will restore his wealth. 11 His bones are full of his youthful vigor, But it will lie down with him in the dust.
12 “Though evil is sweet in his mouth, And he hides it under his tongue, 13 Though he spares it and does not forsake it, But still keeps it in his [i]mouth, 14 Yet his food in his stomach turns sour; It becomes cobra venom within him. 15 He swallows down riches And vomits them up again; God casts them out of his belly. 16 He will suck the poison of cobras; The viper’s tongue will slay him. 17 He will not see the streams, The rivers flowing with honey and cream. 18 He will restore that for which he labored, And will not swallow it down; From the proceeds of business He will get no enjoyment. 19 For he has [j]oppressed and forsaken the poor, He has violently seized a house which he did not build.
20 “Because he knows no quietness in his [k]heart, He will not save anything he desires. 21 Nothing is left for him to eat; Therefore his well-being will not last. 22 In his self-sufficiency he will be in distress; Every hand of [l]misery will come against him. 23 When he is about to fill his stomach, God will cast on him the fury of His wrath, And will rain it on him while he is eating. 24 He will flee from the iron weapon; A bronze bow will pierce him through. 25 It is drawn, and comes out of the body; Yes, the glittering point comes out of his [m]gall. Terrors come upon him; 26 Total darkness is reserved for his treasures. An unfanned fire will consume him; It shall go ill with him who is left in his tent. 27 The heavens will reveal his iniquity, And the earth will rise up against him. 28 The increase of his house will depart, And his goods will flow away in the day of His wrath. 29 This is the portion from God for a wicked man, The heritage appointed to him by God.”
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