God Speaks Now to Job

38 Then the Lord (A)answered Job from the whirlwind and said,

“Who is this who (B)darkens the divine plan
By words without knowledge?
Now [a](C)tighten the belt on your waist like a man,
And (D)I shall ask you, and you inform Me!
Where were you (E)when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell Me, if you [b]have understanding,
Who set its (F)measurements? Since you know.
Or who stretched the measuring line over it?
On what (G)were its bases sunk?
Or who laid its cornerstone,
When the morning stars sang together
And all the (H)sons of God shouted for joy?

“Or who (I)enclosed the sea with doors
When it went out from the womb, bursting forth;
When I made a cloud its garment,
And thick darkness its swaddling bands,
10 And I [c](J)placed boundaries on it
And set a bolt and doors,
11 And I said, ‘As far as this point you shall come, but no farther;
And here your proud waves shall stop’?

God’s Mighty Power

12 “Have you [d]ever in your life commanded the morning,
And made the dawn know its place,
13 So that it would take hold of (K)the ends of the earth,
And (L)the wicked would be shaken off from it?
14 It is changed like clay under the seal;
And they stand out like a garment.
15 (M)Their light is withheld from the wicked,
And the (N)uplifted arm is broken.

16 “Have you entered (O)the springs of the sea,
And walked [e]in the depth of the ocean?
17 Have the gates of death been revealed to you,
And have you seen the gates of (P)deep darkness?
18 Have you understood the [f]expanse of (Q)the earth?
Tell Me, if you know all this.

19 “Where is the way to the dwelling of light?
And darkness, where is its place,
20 That you would take it to (R)its territory,
And discern the paths to its [g]home?
21 You know, for (S)you were born then,
And the number of your days is great!
22 Have you entered the storehouses (T)of the snow,
And have you seen the storehouses of the (U)hail,
23 Which I have reserved for a time of distress,
For a day of war and battle?
24 Where is the way that (V)the light is divided,
And the east wind scattered on the earth?

25 “Who has split open a channel for the flood,
And a way for the thunderbolt,
26 To bring (W)rain on a land without [h]people,
On a desert without a person in it,
27 To (X)satisfy the waste and desolate land,
And to make the [i]seeds of grass to sprout?
28 Does (Y)the rain have a father?
Or who has fathered the drops of dew?
29 From whose womb has come the (Z)ice?
And the frost of heaven, who has given it birth?
30 Water [j]becomes hard like stone,
And the surface of the deep is imprisoned.

31 “Can you tie up the chains of the (AA)Pleiades,
Or untie the cords of Orion?
32 Can you bring out a [k]constellation in its season,
And guide the Bear with her [l]satellites?
33 Do you know the (AB)ordinances of the heavens,
Or do you establish their rule over the earth?

34 “Can you raise your voice to the clouds,
So that an (AC)abundance of water will cover you?
35 Can you (AD)send flashes of lightning, so that they may go
And say to you, ‘Here we are’?
36 Who has (AE)put wisdom in the innermost being,
Or given (AF)understanding to the [m]mind?
37 Who can count the clouds by wisdom,
And (AG)pour out the water jars of the heavens,
38 When the dust hardens into a mass
And the clods stick together?

39 “Can you hunt the (AH)prey for the lioness,
Or satisfy the appetite of young lions,
40 When they (AI)crouch in their hiding places,
And lie in wait in their lair?
41 Who prepares [n]feed for (AJ)the raven
When its young cry to God,
And wander about without food?

God Speaks of Nature and Its Beings

39 “Do you know the time the [o](AK)mountain goats give birth?
Do you observe the calving of the (AL)deer?
Can you count the months they fulfill,
Or do you know the time they give birth?
They kneel down, they deliver their young,
They get rid of their labor pains.
Their offspring become strong, they grow up in the open field;
They leave and do not return to them.

“Who sent the (AM)wild donkey out free?
And who opened the bonds of the swift donkey,
To whom I gave (AN)the wilderness as his home,
And the salt land as his dwelling place?
He laughs at the turmoil of the city,
He does not hear the shouting of the taskmaster.
He explores the mountains of his pasture,
And searches after every green thing.
Will the (AO)wild bull be willing to serve you,
Or will he spend the night at your feeding trough?
10 Can you tie down the wild bull in a furrow with [p]ropes,
Or will he [q]plow the valleys after you?
11 Will you trust him because his strength is great,
And leave your labor to him?
12 Will you have faith in him that he will return your [r]grain
And gather it from your threshing floor?

13 “The wings of the ostrich flap joyously,
With the pinion and feathers of [s]love,
14 For she abandons her eggs to the earth
And warms them in the dust,
15 And she forgets that a foot may crush [t]them,
Or that a wild animal may trample [u]them.
16 She treats her young (AP)cruelly, as if they were not hers;
Though her labor is for nothing, she is [v]unconcerned,
17 Because God has made her forget wisdom,
And has not given her a share of understanding.
18 When she rushes away on high,
She laughs at the horse and his rider.

19 “Do you give the horse his might?
Do you clothe his neck with a mane?
20 Do you make him (AQ)leap like locusts?
His majestic (AR)snorting is frightening.
21 [w]He paws in the valley, and rejoices in his strength;
He (AS)goes out to meet the battle.
22 He laughs at fear and is not dismayed;
And he does not turn back from the sword.
23 The quiver rattles against him,
The flashing spear and javelin.
24 He [x]races over the ground with a roar and fury,
And he does not stand still when he hears the sound of the trumpet.
25 As often as the trumpet sounds he says, ‘Aha!’
And he senses the battle from afar,
And the thunder of the captains and the war cry.

26 “Is it by your understanding that the hawk soars,
Stretching his wings toward the south?
27 Is it at your [y]command that the eagle flies high,
And makes (AT)his nest on high?
28 He dwells and spends his nights on the cliff,
On the rocky cliff, an inaccessible place.
29 From there he (AU)tracks food;
His eyes look at it from afar.
30 His young ones also lick up blood greedily;
And (AV)where the slain are, there he is.”


  1. Job 38:3 I.e., as if for battle
  2. Job 38:4 Lit know understanding
  3. Job 38:10 Lit broke My decree on it
  4. Job 38:12 Lit from your days commanded
  5. Job 38:16 Or in search of the deep
  6. Job 38:18 Or width
  7. Job 38:20 Lit house
  8. Job 38:26 Lit man
  9. Job 38:27 Or growth
  10. Job 38:30 Lit hides itself like
  11. Job 38:32 Heb Mazzaroth
  12. Job 38:32 Lit sons
  13. Job 38:36 Or rooster
  14. Job 38:41 Lit its feed
  15. Job 39:1 Lit goats of the rock
  16. Job 39:10 Lit his rope
  17. Job 39:10 I.e., pull a harrow, a farming device
  18. Job 39:12 Lit seed
  19. Job 39:13 Or a stork
  20. Job 39:15 Lit it
  21. Job 39:15 Lit it
  22. Job 39:16 Lit without fear
  23. Job 39:21 Lit They paw
  24. Job 39:24 Lit swallows up
  25. Job 39:27 Lit mouth

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