24 “Why does the Almighty not set seasons for judgment? Why do those who know Him not see His days [for punishment of the wicked]? 2 “Some remove the landmarks; They [violently] seize and pasture flocks [appropriating land and flocks openly]. 3 “They drive away the donkeys of the orphans; They take the widow’s ox for a pledge. 4 “They crowd the needy off the road; The poor of the land all hide themselves. 5 “Behold, as wild donkeys in the desert, The poor go to their work, diligently seeking food; As bread for their children in the desert. 6 “They harvest their fodder in a field [that is not their own], And glean the vineyard of the wicked. 7 “They spend the night naked, without clothing, And have no covering against the cold. 8 “They are wet from the rain of the mountains And cling to the rock for lack of shelter. 9 “Others snatch the fatherless [infants] from the breast [to sell or make them slaves], And against the poor they take a pledge [of clothing]. 10 “They cause the poor to go about naked without clothing, And they take away the sheaves [of grain] from the hungry. 11 “Within the walls [of the wicked] the poor make [olive] oil; They tread [the grapes in] the wine presses, but thirst. 12 “From the [populous and crowded] city men groan, And the souls of the wounded cry out for help; Yet God [seemingly] does not pay attention to the wrong [done to them].
13 “Others have been with those who rebel against the light; They do not want to know its ways Nor stay in its paths. 14 “The murderer rises at dawn; He kills the poor and the needy, And at night he becomes a thief. 15 “The eye of the adulterer waits for the twilight, Saying, ‘No eye will see me,’ And he covers his face. 16 “In the dark they dig into [the penetrable walls of] houses; They shut themselves up by day; They do not know the light [of day]. 17 “For the morning is the same to him as the thick darkness [of midnight]; For he is familiar with the terrors of thick darkness.
18 “They are insignificant on the surface of the water; Their portion is cursed on the earth; They do not turn toward the vineyards. 19 “Drought and heat consume the snow waters; So does Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead) [consume] those who have sinned. 20 “A mother will forget him; The worm feeds on him until he is no longer remembered. And wickedness will be broken like a tree [which cannot be restored]. 21 “He preys on the barren (childless) woman And does no good for the widow. 22 “Yet God draws away the mighty by His power; He rises, but no one has assurance of life. 23 “God gives them security, and they are supported; And His eyes are on their ways. 24 “They are exalted for a little while, and then they are gone; Moreover, they are brought low and like everything [they are] gathered up and taken out of the way; Even like the heads of grain they are cut off. 25 “And if this is not so, who can prove me a liar And make my speech worthless?”
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