17 My hopes have died, my time is up, and the grave is ready. 2 All I can see are angry crowds, making fun of me. 3 If you, Lord, don’t help, who will pay the price for my release? 4 My friends won’t really listen, all because of you, and so you must be the one to prove them wrong. 5 They have condemned me, just to benefit themselves; now blind their children.
6 You, God, are the reason I am insulted and spit on. 7 I am almost blind with grief; my body is a mere shadow.
8 People who are truly good would feel so alarmed, that they would become angry at my worthless friends. 9 They would do the right thing and because they did, they would grow stronger.[a] 10 But none of my friends show any sense.
11 My life is drawing to an end; hope has disappeared. 12 But all my friends can do is offer empty hopes.[b] 13 I could tell the world below to prepare me a bed. 14 Then I could greet the grave as my father and say to the worms, “Hello, mother and sisters!”
15 But what kind of hope is that? 16 Will it keep me company in the world of the dead?
2 How long will you talk? Be sensible! Let us speak. 3 Or do you think that we are dumb animals? 4 You cut yourself in anger. Will that shake the earth or even move the rocks?
5 The lamps of sinful people soon are snuffed out, 6 leaving their tents dark. 7 Their powerful legs become weak, and they stumble on schemes of their own doing. 8 Before they know it, 9 they are trapped in a net, 10 hidden along the path. 11 Terror strikes and pursues from every side. 12 Starving, they run, only to meet disaster, 13 then afterwards to be eaten alive by death itself.
14 Those sinners are dragged from the safety of their tents to die a gruesome death. 15 Then their tents and possessions are burned to ashes, 16 and they are left like trees, dried up from the roots. 17 They are gone and forgotten, 18 thrown far from the light into a world of darkness, 19 without any children to carry on their name. 20 Everyone, from east to west, is overwhelmed with horror. 21 Such is the fate of sinners and their families who don’t know God.
Job’s Reply to Bildad
How Long Will You Torture Me?
19 Job said:
2 How long will you torture me with your words? 3 Isn’t ten times enough for you to accuse me? Aren’t you ashamed? 4 Even if I have sinned, you haven’t been harmed. 5 You boast of your goodness, claiming I am suffering because I am guilty. 6 But God is the one at fault for finding fault with me.
7 Though I pray to be rescued from this torment, no whisper of justice answers me. 8 God has me trapped with a wall of darkness 9 and stripped of respect. 10 God rips me apart, uproots my hopes, 11 and attacks with fierce anger, as though I were his enemy. 12 His entire army advances, then surrounds my tent.
I Am Forgotten
13 God has turned relatives and friends against me, 14 and I am forgotten. 15 My guests and my servants consider me a stranger, 16 and when I call my servants, they pay no attention. 17 My breath disgusts my wife; everyone in my family turns away. 18 Young children can’t stand me, and when I come near, they make fun. 19 My best friends and loved ones have turned from me. 20 I am skin and bones— just barely alive. 21 My friends, I beg you for pity! God has made me his target. 22 Hasn’t he already done enough? Why do you join the attack?
23 I wish that my words could be written down 24 or chiseled into rock. 25 I know that my Savior[d] lives, and at the end he will stand on this earth. 26 My flesh may be destroyed, yet from this body I will see God.[e] 27 Yes, I will see him for myself, and I long for that moment.
28 My friends, you think up ways to blame and torment me, saying I brought it on myself. 29 But watch out for the judgment, when God will punish you!
17.9stronger: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verses 8,9.
17.12hopes: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text of verse 12.
10 In Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, who was the captain of a group of soldiers called “The Italian Unit.” 2 Cornelius was a very religious man. He worshiped God, and so did everyone else who lived in his house. He had given a lot of money to the poor and was always praying to God.
3 One afternoon at about three o’clock,[a] Cornelius had a vision. He saw an angel from God coming to him and calling him by name. 4 Cornelius was surprised and stared at the angel. Then he asked, “What is this all about?”
The angel answered, “God has heard your prayers and knows about your gifts to the poor. 5 Now send some men to Joppa for a man named Simon Peter. 6 He is visiting with Simon the leather maker, who lives in a house near the sea.” 7 After saying this, the angel left.
Cornelius called in two of his servants and one of his soldiers who worshiped God. 8 He explained everything to them and sent them off to Joppa.
9 The next day about noon these men were coming near Joppa. Peter went up on the roof[b] of the house to pray 10 and became very hungry. While the food was being prepared, he fell sound asleep and had a vision. 11 He saw heaven open, and something came down like a huge sheet held up by its four corners. 12 In it were all kinds of animals, snakes, and birds. 13 A voice said to him, “Peter, get up! Kill these and eat them.”
14 But Peter said, “Lord, I can’t do that! I’ve never eaten anything that is unclean and not fit to eat.”[c]
15 The voice spoke to him again, “When God says that something can be used for food, don’t say it isn’t fit to eat.”
16 This happened three times before the sheet was suddenly taken back to heaven.
17 Peter was still wondering what all of this meant, when the men sent by Cornelius came and stood at the gate. They had found their way to Simon’s house 18 and were asking if Simon Peter was staying there.
19 While Peter was still thinking about the vision, the Holy Spirit said to him, “Three[d] men are here looking for you. 20 Hurry down and go with them. Don’t worry, I sent them.”
21 Peter went down and said to the men, “I am the one you are looking for. Why have you come?”
22 They answered, “Captain Cornelius sent us. He is a good man who worships God and is liked by the Jewish people. One of God’s holy angels told Cornelius to send for you, so he could hear what you have to say.” 23 Peter invited them to spend the night.
The next morning, Peter and some of the Lord’s followers in Joppa left with the men who had come from Cornelius.
10.3at about three o’clock: Probably while he was praying (see 3.1 and the note there).
10.9roof: In Palestine the houses usually had a flat roof. Stairs on the outside led up to the roof, which was made of beams and boards covered with packed earth.
10.14unclean and not fit to eat: The Law of Moses taught that some foods were not fit to eat.
10.19Three: One manuscript has “two;” some manuscripts have “some.”
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