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Job 34Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

34 Then Elihu continued,[a] saying:

Hear my words, you wise men,
and listen to me, you knowledgeable ones.
Doesn’t the ear test words
as the palate tastes food?
Let us judge for ourselves what is right;
let us decide together what is good.
For Job has declared, “I am righteous,
yet God has deprived me of justice.
Would I lie about my case?
My wound[b] is incurable,
though I am without transgression.”
What man is like Job?
He drinks derision like water.
He keeps company with evildoers
and walks with wicked men.
For he has said, “A man gains nothing
when he becomes God’s friend.”

10 Therefore listen to me, you men of understanding.
It is impossible for God to do wrong,
and for the Almighty to act unjustly.
11 For He repays a person according to his deeds,
and He brings his ways on him.
12 Indeed, it is true that God does not act wickedly
and the Almighty does not pervert justice.
13 Who gave Him authority over the earth?
Who put Him in charge of the entire world?
14 If He put His mind to it
and withdrew the spirit and breath He gave,
15 every living thing would perish together
and mankind would return to the dust.

16 If you have understanding, hear this;
listen to what I have to say.
17 Could one who hates justice govern the world?
Will you condemn the mighty Righteous One,
18 who says to a king, “Worthless man!”
and to nobles, “Wicked men!”?
19 God is not partial to princes
and does not favor the rich over the poor,
for they are all the work of His hands.
20 They die suddenly in the middle of the night;
people shudder, then pass away.
Even the mighty are removed without effort.

21 For His eyes watch over a man’s ways,
and He observes all his steps.
22 There is no darkness, no deep darkness,
where evildoers can hide themselves.
23 God does not need to examine a person further,
that one should[c] approach Him in court.
24 He shatters the mighty without an investigation
and sets others in their place.
25 Therefore, He recognizes their deeds
and overthrows them by night, and they are crushed.
26 In full view of the public,[d]
He strikes them for their wickedness,
27 because they turned aside from following Him
and did not understand any of His ways
28 but caused the poor to cry out to Him,
and He heard the outcry of the afflicted.
29 But when God is silent, who can declare Him guilty?
When He hides His face, who can see Him?
Yet He watches over both individuals and nations,
30 so that godless men should not rule
or ensnare the people.

31 Suppose someone says to God,
“I have endured my punishment;
I will no longer act wickedly.
32 Teach me what I cannot see;
if I have done wrong, I won’t do it again.”
33 Should God repay you on your terms
when you have rejected His?
You must choose, not I!
So declare what you know.
34 Reasonable men will say to me,
along with the wise men who hear me,
35 “Job speaks without knowledge;
his words are without insight.”
36 If only Job were tested to the limit,
because his answers are like those of wicked men.
37 For he adds rebellion to his sin;
he scornfully claps in our presence,
while multiplying his words against God.


  1. Job 34:1 Lit answered
  2. Job 34:6 Lit arrow
  3. Job 34:23 Some emend to God has not appointed a time for man to
  4. Job 34:26 Lit In a place of spectators

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