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Job 38-39 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Lord Speaks

38 Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind. He said:

Who is this who obscures my counsel
with ignorant words?
Get ready to answer me like a man;
when I question you, you will inform me.
Where were you when I established the earth?
Tell me, if you have[a] understanding.
Who fixed its dimensions? Certainly you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
What supports its foundations?
Or who laid its cornerstone
while the morning stars sang together
and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

Who enclosed the sea behind doors
when it burst from the womb,
when I made the clouds its garment
and total darkness its blanket,[b]
10 when I determined its boundaries[c]
and put its bars and doors in place,
11 when I declared: “You may come this far, but no farther;
your proud waves stop here”?

12 Have you ever in your life commanded the morning
or assigned the dawn its place,
13 so it may seize the edges of the earth
and shake the wicked out of it?
14 The earth is changed as clay is by a seal;
its hills stand out like the folds of a garment.
15 Light[d] is withheld from the wicked,
and the arm raised in violence is broken.

16 Have you traveled to the sources of the sea
or walked in the depths of the oceans?
17 Have the gates of death been revealed to you?
Have you seen the gates of deep darkness?
18 Have you comprehended the extent of the earth?
Tell me, if you know all this.

19 Where is the road to the home of light?
Do you know where darkness lives,
20 so you can lead it back to its border?
Are you familiar with the paths to its home?
21 Don’t you know? You were already born;
you have lived so long![e]
22 Have you entered the place where the snow is stored?
Or have you seen the storehouses of hail,
23 which I hold in reserve for times of trouble,
for the day of warfare and battle?
24 What road leads to the place where light is dispersed?[f]
Where is the source of the east wind that spreads across the earth?

25 Who cuts a channel for the flooding rain
or clears the way for lightning,
26 to bring rain on an uninhabited land,
on a desert with no human life,[g]
27 to satisfy the parched wasteland
and cause the grass to sprout?
28 Does the rain have a father?
Who fathered the drops of dew?
29 Whose womb did the ice come from?
Who gave birth to the frost of heaven
30 when water becomes as hard as stone,[h]
and the surface of the watery depths is frozen?

31 Can you fasten the chains of the Pleiades
or loosen the belt of Orion?
32 Can you bring out the constellations[i] in their season
and lead the Bear[j] and her cubs?
33 Do you know the laws of heaven?
Can you impose its[k] authority on earth?
34 Can you command[l] the clouds
so that a flood of water covers you?
35 Can you send out lightning bolts, and they go?
Do they report to you: “Here we are”?

36 Who put wisdom in the heart[m]
or gave the mind understanding?
37 Who has the wisdom to number the clouds?
Or who can tilt the water jars of heaven
38 when the dust hardens like cast metal
and the clods of dirt stick together?

39 Can you hunt prey for a lioness
or satisfy the appetite of young lions
40 when they crouch in their dens
and lie in wait within their lairs?
41 Who provides the raven’s food
when its young cry out to God
and wander about for lack of food?

39 Do you know when mountain goats give birth?
Have you watched the deer in labor?
Can you count the months they are pregnant[n]
so you can know the time they give birth?
They crouch down to give birth to their young;
they deliver their newborn.[o]
Their offspring are healthy and grow up in the open field.
They leave and do not return.[p]

Who set the wild donkey free?
Who released the swift donkey from its harness?
I made the desert its home,
and the salty wasteland its dwelling.
It scoffs at the noise of the village
and never hears the shouts of a driver.
It roams the mountains for its pastureland,
searching for anything green.
Would the wild ox be willing to serve you?
Would it spend the night by your feeding trough?
10 Can you hold the wild ox to a furrow by its harness?
Will it plow the valleys behind you?
11 Can you depend on it because its strength is great?
Would you leave it to do your hard work?
12 Can you trust the wild ox to harvest your grain
and bring it to your threshing floor?

13 The wings of the ostrich flap joyfully,
but are her feathers and plumage like the stork’s?[q]
14 She abandons her eggs on the ground
and lets them be warmed in the sand.
15 She forgets that a foot may crush them
or that some wild animal may trample them.
16 She treats her young harshly, as if they were not her own,
with no fear that her labor may have been in vain.
17 For God has deprived her of wisdom;
he has not endowed her with understanding.
18 When she proudly[r] spreads her wings,
she laughs at the horse and its rider.

19 Do you give strength to the horse?
Do you adorn his neck with a mane?[s]
20 Do you make him leap like a locust?
His proud snorting fills one with terror.
21 He paws[t] in the valley and rejoices in his strength;
he charges into battle.[u]
22 He laughs at fear, since he is afraid of nothing;
he does not run from the sword.
23 A quiver rattles at his side,
along with a flashing spear and a javelin.
24 He charges ahead[v] with trembling rage;
he cannot stand still at the trumpet’s sound.
25 When the trumpet blasts, he snorts defiantly.[w]
He smells the battle from a distance;
he hears the officers’ shouts and the battle cry.

26 Does the hawk take flight by your understanding
and spread its wings to the south?
27 Does the eagle soar at your command
and make its nest on high?
28 It lives on a cliff where it spends the night;
its stronghold is on a rocky crag.
29 From there it searches for prey;
its eyes penetrate the distance.
30 Its brood gulps down blood,
and where the slain are, it is there.

Footnotes:

  1. 38:4 Lit know
  2. 38:9 Lit swaddling clothes
  3. 38:10 Lit I broke my statute on it
  4. 38:15 Lit Their light
  5. 38:21 Lit born; the number of your days is great
  6. 38:24 Or where lightning is distributed
  7. 38:26 Lit no man in it
  8. 38:30 Lit water hides itself as the stone
  9. 38:32 Or Mazzaroth; Hb obscure
  10. 38:32 Or lead Aldebaran
  11. 38:33 Or God’s
  12. 38:34 Lit lift up your voice to
  13. 38:36 Or the inner self; Ps 51:6
  14. 39:2 Lit months they fulfill
  15. 39:3 Or they send away their labor pains
  16. 39:4 Lit return to them
  17. 39:13 Hb obscure
  18. 39:18 Hb obscure
  19. 39:19 Hb obscure
  20. 39:21 LXX, Syr; MT reads They dig
  21. 39:21 Lit he goes out to meet the weaponry
  22. 39:24 Lit He swallows the ground
  23. 39:25 Lit he says, “Aha!”
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

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