Complete Jewish Bible
4 Then Elifaz the Teimani spoke up:
2 “If one tries to speak to you, will you mind?
Yet who could keep from speaking?
3 You have given moral instruction to many,
you have firmed up feeble hands,
4 your words have supported those who were stumbling,
and you have strengthened the weak-kneed.
5 “But now it comes to you, and you are impatient;
at the first touch, you are in shock.
6 Isn’t your fear of God your assurance,
and the integrity of your ways your hope?
7 “Think back: what innocent person has perished?
Since when are the upright destroyed?
8 What I see is that those who plow sin
and sow trouble reap just that.
9 At a breath from God, they perish;
at a blast from his anger, they are consumed.
10 The lion may growl, the king lion may roar,
but that old lion’s teeth are broken;
11 so the lion succumbs from lack of prey,
and the lion’s cubs are scattered.
12 “For a word was stealthily brought to me,
my ear caught only a whisper of it.
13 In passing thoughts flashing through visions at night,
when sleep lies heavy on people,
14 a shiver of horror came over me;
it made all my bones tremble.
15 Then a spirit passed in front of my face;
the hair of my flesh stood on end.
16 It stood still,
but I couldn’t make out its appearance;
yet the form stayed there before my eyes.
Then I heard a subdued voice:
17 ‘Can a human be seen by God as righteous?
Can a mortal be pure before his maker?
18 [God] doesn’t trust his own servants,
he finds fault even with his angels;
19 much more those living in houses of clay,
whose foundation is in the dust.
They are crushed more easily than a worm;
20 shattered between morning and evening;
they perish forever, and no one takes notice.
21 Their cord within them is pulled up;
then they die, without ever gaining wisdom.’