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Elihu Exalts God’s Goodness

36 Elihu continued and said:

“Bear with me a little, and I will show you,
    for I have yet something to say on God’s behalf.
I will bring my knowledge from far away
    and ascribe righteousness to my Maker.(A)
For truly my words are not false;
    one who is perfect in knowledge is with you.(B)

“Surely God is mighty and does not despise any;
    he is mighty in strength of understanding.(C)
He does not keep the wicked alive
    but gives the afflicted their right.(D)
He does not withdraw his eyes from the righteous,
    but with kings on the throne
    he sets them forever, and they are exalted.(E)
And if they are bound in fetters
    and caught in the cords of affliction,
then he declares to them their work
    and their transgressions, that they are behaving arrogantly.(F)
10 He opens their ears to instruction
    and commands that they return from iniquity.(G)
11 If they listen and serve him,
    they complete their days in prosperity
    and their years in pleasantness.(H)
12 But if they do not listen, they shall perish by the sword
    and die without knowledge.(I)

13 “The godless in heart cherish anger;
    they do not cry for help when he binds them.(J)
14 They die in their youth,
    and their life ends in shame.[a](K)
15 He delivers the afflicted by their affliction
    and opens their ear by adversity.(L)
16 He also allured you out of distress
    into a broad place where there was no constraint,
    and what was set on your table was full of fatness.(M)

17 “But you are obsessed with the case of the wicked;
    judgment and justice seize you.
18 Beware that wrath does not entice you into scoffing,
    and do not let the greatness of the ransom turn you aside.(N)
19 Will your cry avail to keep you from distress,
    or will all the force of your strength?
20 Do not long for the night,
    when peoples are cut off in their place.(O)
21 Beware! Do not turn to iniquity;
    because of that you have been tried by affliction.(P)
22 See, God is exalted in his power;
    who is a teacher like him?
23 Who has prescribed for him his way,
    or who can say, ‘You have done wrong’?(Q)

Elihu Proclaims God’s Majesty

24 “Remember to extol his work,
    of which mortals have sung.(R)
25 All people have looked on it;
    everyone watches it from far away.
26 Surely God is great, and we do not know him;
    the number of his years is unsearchable.(S)
27 For he draws up the drops of water;
    he distills[b] his mist in rain,(T)
28 which the skies pour down
    and drop upon mortals abundantly.
29 Can anyone understand the spreading of the clouds,
    the thunderings of his pavilion?(U)
30 See, he scatters his lightning around him
    and covers the roots of the sea.
31 For by these he governs peoples;
    he gives food in abundance.(V)
32 He covers his hands with the lightning
    and commands it to strike the mark.(W)
33 Its crashing[c] tells about him;
    he is jealous[d] with anger against iniquity.(X)

37 “At this also my heart trembles
    and leaps out of its place.
Listen, listen to the thunder of his voice
    and the rumbling that comes from his mouth.(Y)
Under the whole heaven he lets it loose,
    and his lightning to the corners of the earth.
After it his voice roars;
    he thunders with his majestic voice,
    and he does not restrain the lightnings[e] when his voice is heard.(Z)
God thunders wondrously with his voice;
    he does great things that we cannot comprehend.(AA)
For to the snow he says, ‘Fall on the earth’;
    and the shower of rain, his heavy shower of rain,(AB)
serves as a sign on everyone’s hand,
    so that all whom he has made may know it.[f](AC)
Then the animals go into their lairs
    and remain in their dens.(AD)
From its chamber comes the whirlwind
    and cold from the scattering winds.(AE)
10 By the breath of God ice is given,
    and the broad waters are frozen fast.(AF)
11 He loads the thick cloud with moisture;
    the clouds scatter his lightning.(AG)
12 They turn round and round by his guidance
    to accomplish all that he commands them
    on the face of the habitable world.(AH)
13 Whether for correction or for his land
    or for love, he causes it to happen.(AI)

14 “Hear this, O Job;
    stop and consider the wondrous works of God.(AJ)
15 Do you know how God lays his command upon them
    and causes the lightning of his cloud to shine?
16 Do you know the balancings of the clouds,
    the wondrous works of the one whose knowledge is perfect,(AK)
17 you whose garments are hot
    when the earth is still because of the south wind?
18 Can you, like him, spread out the skies,
    hard as a molten mirror?(AL)
19 Teach us what we shall say to him;
    we cannot draw up our case because of darkness.
20 Should he be told that I want to speak?
    Did anyone ever wish to be swallowed up?
21 Now, no one can look on the light
    when it is bright in the skies,
    when the wind has passed and cleared them.
22 Out of the north comes golden splendor;
    around God is awesome majesty.
23 The Almighty[g]—we cannot find him;
    he is great in power and justice,
    and abundant righteousness he will not violate.(AM)
24 Therefore mortals fear him;
    he does not regard any who are wise in their own conceit.”(AN)


  1. 36.14 Heb ends among the prostitutes
  2. 36.27 Cn: Heb they distill
  3. 36.33 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  4. 36.33 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  5. 37.4 Heb them
  6. 37.7 Meaning of Heb of 37.7 uncertain
  7. 37.23 Traditional rendering of Heb Shaddai

The Council’s Letter to Gentile Believers

22 Then the apostles and the elders, with the consent of the whole church, decided to choose men from among them and to send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. They sent Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, leaders among the brothers, 23 with the following letter: “The brothers, both the apostles and the elders, to the brothers and sisters of gentile origin in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, greetings. 24 Since we have heard that certain persons who have gone out from us, though with no instructions from us, have said things to disturb you and have unsettled your minds,[a](A) 25 we have decided unanimously to choose men and send them to you, along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, 26 who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.(B) 27 We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will tell you the same things by word of mouth. 28 For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to impose on you no further burden than these essentials: 29 that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and from what is strangled[b] and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.”(C)

30 So they were sent off and went down to Antioch. When they gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. 31 When they read it, they rejoiced at the exhortation. 32 Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, said much to encourage and strengthen the brothers and sisters. 33 After they had been there for some time, they were sent off in peace by the brothers and sisters to those who had sent them.[c](D) 35 But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, and there, with many others, they taught and proclaimed the word of the Lord.

Paul and Barnabas Separate

36 After some days Paul said to Barnabas, “Come, let us return and visit the brothers and sisters in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord and see how they are doing.”(E) 37 Barnabas wanted to take with them John called Mark.(F) 38 But Paul decided not to take with them one who had deserted them in Pamphylia and had not accompanied them in the work.(G) 39 The disagreement became so sharp that they parted company; Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus. 40 But Paul chose Silas and set out, the brothers and sisters commending him to the grace of the Lord. 41 He went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.(H)

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  1. 15.24 Other ancient authorities add saying, ‘You must be circumcised and keep the law,’
  2. 15.29 Other ancient authorities lack and from what is strangled
  3. 15.33 Other ancient authorities add 15.34, But it seemed good to Silas to remain there