Zophar Answers Job
1Then Zophar from Naamah answered:
2“You upset me, so I must answer you.
I must tell you what I am thinking.
3You insulted me with your answers!
But I am wise and know how to answer you.
4-5“You know that the joy of the wicked does not last long.
That has been true a long time, ever since Adam was#20:4-5 Adam was Or “people were.” put on earth.
Those who don’t know God are happy for only a short time.
6Maybe an evil man’s pride will reach up to the sky,
and his head will touch the clouds.
7But he will be gone forever like his own body waste.
People who knew him will say, ‘Where is he?’
8Like a dream, he will fly away, never to be found.
He will be chased away like a bad dream.#20:8 bad dream Or “vision of the night.”
9Those who knew him before will not see him again.
His family will never again get to see him.
10His children will have to give back what he took from the poor.
His own hands will give up his wealth.
11When he was young, his bones were strong,
but, like the rest of his body, they will soon lie in the dirt.
12“Evil tastes sweet in his mouth.
He keeps it under his tongue to enjoy it fully.
13He hates to let it go
and holds it in his mouth.
14But that evil will turn sour in his stomach.
It will be like a snake’s bitter poison inside him.
15The evil man will spit out the riches he has swallowed.
God will make him vomit them up.
16What he drank will be like a snake’s poison;
it will kill him like the bite of a deadly snake.
17He will never again enjoy so much wealth—
rivers flowing with honey and cream.#20:17 rivers … cream A figure meaning a plentiful supply of rich food. The word translated “cream” could mean butter, curds, or yogurt.
18He will be forced to give back his profits.
He will not be allowed to enjoy what he worked for,
19because he hurt the poor and left them with nothing.
He took houses he did not build.
20“The evil man is never satisfied.
But the things he wants cannot save him.
21After filling himself, there is nothing left.
His success will not continue.
22Even while he has plenty, he will be pressed down with trouble.
His problems will come down on him!
23If he does get all he wants,
God will throw his burning anger against him.
God will attack him and rain down punishment on him.
24Maybe he will run away from an iron sword,
but then a bronze arrow#20:24 bronze arrow Literally, “bronze bow.” Or “powerful bow,” possibly a bow made of sinew, wood and horn. will strike him down.
25It will go through his body
and stick out of his back.
Its shining point will pierce his liver,
and he will be shocked with terror.
26All his treasures will be lost in darkness.
He will be destroyed by a fire, a fire that no human started.
It will destroy everything left in his house.
27Heaven will prove that he is guilty.
The earth will be a witness against him.
28His house and everything in it will be carried away
in the flood of God’s anger.
29That is what God will do to those who are evil.
That is what he plans to give them.”