7 “Is not man forced to labor on earth? And are not his days like the days of a hired man? 2 “As a slave earnestly longs for the shade, And as a hired man eagerly awaits his wages, 3 So am I allotted months of futility and suffering, And [long] nights of trouble and misery are appointed to me. 4 “When I lie down I say, ‘When shall I arise [and the night be gone]?’ But the night continues, And I am continually tossing until the dawning of day. 5 “My body is clothed with worms and a crust of dust; My skin is hardened [and broken and loathsome], and [breaks out and] runs. 6 “My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, And are spent without hope.
7 “Remember that my life is but breath [a puff of wind, a sigh]; My eye will not see good again. 8 “The eye of him who sees me [now] will see me no more; Your eyes will be upon me, but I will not be. 9 “As a cloud vanishes and is gone, So he who goes down to Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead) does not come up. 10 “He will not return again to his house, Nor will his place know about him anymore.
11 “Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit, I will complain in the bitterness of my soul [O Lord]. 12 “Am I the sea, or the sea monster, That You set a guard over me? 13 “When I say, ‘My bed will comfort me, My couch will ease my complaint,’ 14 Then You frighten me with dreams And terrify me through visions, 15 So that I would choose suffocation, Death rather than my [a]pain. 16 “I waste away and loathe my life; I will not live forever. Let me alone, for my days are but a breath [futile and without substance]. 17 “What is man that You [should] magnify him [and think him important]? And that You are concerned about him? 18 “And that You examine him every morning And try and test him every moment? 19 “Will You never turn Your gaze away from me [it plagues me], Nor let me alone until I swallow my spittle? 20 “If I have sinned, what [harm] have I done to You, O Watcher of mankind? Why have You set me as a target for You, So that I am a burden to myself? 21 “Why then do You not pardon my transgression And take away my sin and guilt? For now I will lie down in the dust; And You will seek me [diligently], but I will not be.”
Bildad Says God Rewards the Good
8 Then Bildad the Shuhite answered and said,
2 “How long will you say these things? And will the words of your mouth be a mighty wind? 3 “Does God pervert justice? Or does [b]the Almighty pervert righteousness? 4 “If your children have sinned against Him, Then He has handed them over to the power of their transgression and punished them. 5 “If you would [diligently] seek God And implore the compassion and favor of the Almighty, 6 Then, if you are pure and upright, Surely now He will awaken for you And restore your righteous place. 7 “Though your beginning was insignificant, Yet your end will greatly increase.
8 “Inquire, please, of past generations, And consider and apply yourself to the things searched out by their fathers. 9 “For we are only of yesterday and know nothing, Because our days on earth are [like] a shadow [just a breath or a vapor]. 10 “Will they (the fathers) not teach you and tell you, And utter words from their hearts [the deepest part of their nature]?
11 “Can the papyrus grow up without a marsh? Can the rushes or reed grass grow without water? 12 “While it is still green (in flower) and not cut down, Yet it withers before any other plant [when without water]. 13 “So are the paths of all who forget God; And the hope of the godless will perish, 14 For his confidence is fragile and breaks, And his trust is [like] a spider’s web. 15 “He trusts in his house, but it does not stand; He holds tightly to it, but it does not endure. 16 “He thrives and prospers [like a green plant] before the sun, And his branches spread out over his garden. 17 “His [godless] roots are wrapped around a pile of rocks, And he gazes at a house of stones. 18 “If he is snatched from his place [in the garden], Then his place will forget him, saying, ‘I have never seen you.’ 19 “Behold, this is the joy of His way; And from out of the dust others will spring up and grow [to take his place]. 20 “Behold, God will not reject a man of integrity, Nor will He strengthen or support evildoers. 21 “He will yet fill your mouth with laughter And your lips with joyful shouting [if you are found blameless]. 22 “Those who hate you will be clothed with shame, And the tents of the wicked will be no longer.”
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