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Job 9 Modern English Version (MEV)

Job Replies: There Is No Mediator

Then Job answered:

“Truly, I know it is so,
    but how can a man be righteous with God?
If one would dispute with Him,
    he cannot answer Him once in a thousand times.
He is wise in heart and mighty in strength.
    Who has hardened himself against Him and prospered?
He who removes mountains, and they know not,
    who overturns them in His anger.
He who shakes the earth out of its place,
    and its pillars tremble.
He who commands the sun, and it does not rise;
    he seals off the stars.
He who alone spreads out the heavens,
    and treads on the waves of the sea.
He who makes the Bear, Orion, and Pleiades,
    and the constellations of the south.
10 He who does great things, beyond discovery,
    yes, and wonders beyond number.
11 Yes, He would cross before me, and I would not see Him;
    He would pass on by, but I would not perceive Him.
12 Yes, He takes away; who can hinder Him?
    Who will say to Him, ‘What are You doing?’
13 God will not withdraw His anger.
    The proud helpers bow down beneath Him.

14 “How, then, can I myself answer Him,
    and choose my words to reason with Him?
15 Even if I were righteous I could not answer;
    I would plead to my Judge for favor.
16 If I called, and He answered me,
    I would not believe that He had listened to my voice.
17 For He crushes me with a storm
    and multiplies my wounds without cause.
18 He will not allow me to get my breath,
    but fills me with bitterness.
19 If it is a matter of strength, indeed, He is strong;
    and if of justice, who will set me a time to plead?
20 Though I were righteous, my own mouth would condemn me;
    though I were perfect, it would prove me perverse.

21 “Though I were perfect,
    I would not know myself;
    I would despise my life.
22 It is all one thing; therefore I said,
    ‘He destroys both the perfect and the wicked.’
23 If the whip kills suddenly,
    He will laugh at the trial of the innocent.
24 The earth is given into the hand of the wicked.
    He covers the faces of its judges.
    If it is not He, then who is it?

25 “Now my days are swifter than a runner;
    they flee away; they see no good.
26 They pass by like reed skiffs,
    like an eagle rushing upon its prey.
27 If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint;
    I will leave off my sad face and brighten up,’
28 I am afraid of all my sorrows;
    I know that You will not hold me innocent.
29 If I am guilty,
    why then do I labor in vain?
30 If I wash myself with snow water
    and cleanse my hands with soap,
31 yet You will plunge me into the pit,
    and my own clothes will abhor me.

32 “For He is not a man as I am, that I should answer Him,
    and we should come together in judgment.
33 Nor is there a mediator between us,
    who may lay his hand upon us both.
34 Let Him take His rod away from me,
    and let not dread of Him terrify me.
35 Then I would speak and not fear Him,
    but it is not so with me.

Modern English Version (MEV)

The Holy Bible, Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Published and distributed by Charisma House.

Job 9 New International Version (NIV)


Then Job replied:

“Indeed, I know that this is true.
    But how can mere mortals prove their innocence before God?
Though they wished to dispute with him,
    they could not answer him one time out of a thousand.
His wisdom is profound, his power is vast.
    Who has resisted him and come out unscathed?
He moves mountains without their knowing it
    and overturns them in his anger.
He shakes the earth from its place
    and makes its pillars tremble.
He speaks to the sun and it does not shine;
    he seals off the light of the stars.
He alone stretches out the heavens
    and treads on the waves of the sea.
He is the Maker of the Bear[a] and Orion,
    the Pleiades and the constellations of the south.
10 He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed,
    miracles that cannot be counted.
11 When he passes me, I cannot see him;
    when he goes by, I cannot perceive him.
12 If he snatches away, who can stop him?
    Who can say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13 God does not restrain his anger;
    even the cohorts of Rahab cowered at his feet.

14 “How then can I dispute with him?
    How can I find words to argue with him?
15 Though I were innocent, I could not answer him;
    I could only plead with my Judge for mercy.
16 Even if I summoned him and he responded,
    I do not believe he would give me a hearing.
17 He would crush me with a storm
    and multiply my wounds for no reason.
18 He would not let me catch my breath
    but would overwhelm me with misery.
19 If it is a matter of strength, he is mighty!
    And if it is a matter of justice, who can challenge him[b]?
20 Even if I were innocent, my mouth would condemn me;
    if I were blameless, it would pronounce me guilty.

21 “Although I am blameless,
    I have no concern for myself;
    I despise my own life.
22 It is all the same; that is why I say,
    ‘He destroys both the blameless and the wicked.’
23 When a scourge brings sudden death,
    he mocks the despair of the innocent.
24 When a land falls into the hands of the wicked,
    he blindfolds its judges.
    If it is not he, then who is it?

25 “My days are swifter than a runner;
    they fly away without a glimpse of joy.
26 They skim past like boats of papyrus,
    like eagles swooping down on their prey.
27 If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
    I will change my expression, and smile,’
28 I still dread all my sufferings,
    for I know you will not hold me innocent.
29 Since I am already found guilty,
    why should I struggle in vain?
30 Even if I washed myself with soap
    and my hands with cleansing powder,
31 you would plunge me into a slime pit
    so that even my clothes would detest me.

32 “He is not a mere mortal like me that I might answer him,
    that we might confront each other in court.
33 If only there were someone to mediate between us,
    someone to bring us together,
34 someone to remove God’s rod from me,
    so that his terror would frighten me no more.
35 Then I would speak up without fear of him,
    but as it now stands with me, I cannot.


  1. Job 9:9 Or of Leo
  2. Job 9:19 See Septuagint; Hebrew me.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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