1Then Iyov responded:
2“Indeed, I know that this is so;
but how can a human win a case against God?
3Whoever might want to argue with him
could not answer him one [question] in a thousand.
4His heart is so wise, his strength so great —
who can resist him and succeed?
5“He moves the mountains, although they don’t know it,
when he overturns them in his anger.
6He shakes the earth from its place;
its supporting pillars tremble.
7He commands the sun, and it fails to rise;
he shuts up the stars under his seal.
8He alone spreads out the sky
and walks on the waves in the sea.
9He made the Great Bear, Orion, the Pleiades
and the hidden constellations of the south.
10He does great, unsearchable things,
wonders beyond counting.
11He can go right by me, and I don’t see him;
he moves past without my being aware of him.
12If he kills [people], who will ask why?
Who will say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13God will not withdraw his anger —
even Rahav’s supporters submit to him.
14“How much less can I answer him
and select my arguments against him!
15Even if I were right, I wouldn’t answer;
I could only ask for mercy from my judge.
16If I summoned him, and he answered me,
I still can’t believe he would listen to my plea.
17He could break me with a storm;
he could multiply my wounds for no reason,
18to the point where I couldn’t even breathe —
with such bitterness he could fill me!
19If it’s a matter of force, look how mighty he is;
if justice, who can summon him to court?
20Even if I’m right, my own mouth will condemn me;
if I’m innocent, it would pronounce me guilty.
21“I am innocent. Don’t I know myself?
But I’ve had enough of this life of mine!
22So I say it’s all the same —
he destroys innocent and wicked alike.
23When disaster brings sudden death,
he laughs at the plight of the innocent.
24The earth has been given to the power of the wicked;
he covers the faces of its judges —
if it isn’t he, then who is it?
25My days pass on more swiftly than a runner;
they flee without seeing anything good.
26They skim by like skiffs built of reeds,
like an eagle swooping down on its prey.
27“If I say, ‘I’ll forget my complaining,
I’ll put off my sad face and be cheerful,’
28then I’m still afraid of all my pain,
and I know you will not hold me innocent.
29I will be condemned,
so why waste my efforts?
30Even if I washed myself in melted snow
and cleansed my hands with lye,
31you would plunge me into the muddy pit,
till my own clothes would detest me.
32“For he is not merely human like me;
there is no answer that I could give him
if we were to come together in court.
33There is no arbitrator between us
who could lay his hand on us both.
34If he would remove his rod from me
and not let his terrors frighten me,
35then I would speak without fear of him;
for when I’m alone, I’m not afraid.