New American Bible (Revised Edition)
Job’s Reply. 1 Then Job answered and said:[a]
2 What help you give to the powerless,
what strength to the feeble arm!
3 How you give counsel to one without wisdom;
how profuse is the advice you offer!
4 With whose help have you uttered those words,
whose breath comes forth from you?(A)
5 The shades[b] beneath writhe in terror,(B)
the waters, and their inhabitants.
6 Naked before him is Sheol,[c]
and Abaddon has no covering.(C)
7 He stretches out Zaphon[d] over the void,
and suspends the earth over nothing at all;
8 He binds up the waters in his clouds,
yet the cloud is not split by their weight;
9 He holds back the appearance of the full moon
by spreading his clouds before it.
10 He has marked out a circle[e] on the surface of the deep(D)
as the boundary of light and darkness.
11 The pillars of the heavens tremble
and are stunned at his thunderous rebuke;(E)
12 By his power he stilled Sea,
by his skill he crushed Rahab;[f]
13 By his wind the heavens were made clear,
his hand pierced the fleeing serpent.[g](F)
14 Lo, these are but the outlines of his ways,
and what a whisper of a word we hear of him:
Who can comprehend the thunder of his power?
- 26:1–14 Perhaps to be read as Job’s reply to Bildad’s short speech.
- 26:5 Shades: the dead in Sheol, the nether world; cf. Ps 88:11; Is 26:14.
- 26:6 Sheol: cf. note on Ps 6:6. Abaddon: Hebrew for “(place of) destruction,” a synonym for nether world; cf. Jb 28:22; Rev 9:11.
- 26:7 Zaphon: lit., “the north,” used here as a synonym for the firmament, the heavens; cf. Is 14:13.
- 26:10 Circle: the horizon of the ocean which serves as the boundary for the activity of light and darkness; cf. Prv 8:27.
- 26:12 Rahab: another name for the primeval sea-monster; see notes on Jb 3:8 and Ps 89:11; cf. also Jb 7:12; 9:13.
- 26:13 The fleeing serpent: the same term occurs in Is 27:1 in apposition to Leviathan; see note on Jb 3:8.