Job Replies: There Is No Arbiter
1Then Job answered and said:
2“Truly I know that it is so:
But how can a man be #ch. 4:17in the right before God?
3If one wished to #[ch. 10:2; Ps. 143:2; Rom. 3:20]contend with him,
one could not answer him once in a thousand times.
4He is #[ch. 12:13; 36:5] wise in heart and mighty in strength
—who has #[Ex. 7:13; 32:9]hardened himself against him, and succeeded?—
5he who removes mountains, and they know it not,
when he overturns them in his anger,
6who #Isa. 2:19, 21; 13:13; Hag. 2:6, 21; Heb. 12:26 shakes the earth out of its place,
and #ch. 26:11; Ps. 75:3its pillars tremble;
7who commands the sun, and it does not rise;
who seals up the stars;
8who alone #ch. 26:7; Ps. 104:2; Jer. 10:12; 51:15; Zech. 12:1stretched out the heavens
and trampled the waves of the sea;
9who #Gen. 1:16 made #ch. 38:32 the Bear and #ch. 38:31; Amos 5:8 Orion,
the Pleiades #ch. 37:9and the chambers of the south;
10who does #See ch. 5:9great things beyond searching out,
and marvelous things beyond number.
11Behold, he passes by me, and I #ch. 23:8, 9see him not;
he moves on, but I do not perceive him.
12Behold, he snatches away; #ch. 11:10; 23:13 who can turn him back?
Isa. 45:9; [Jer. 18:6; Rom. 9:20] Who will say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13“God will not turn back his anger;
beneath him bowed the helpers of #ch. 26:12; Ps. 87:4; 89:10; Isa. 30:7; 51:9Rahab.
14 # ch. 15:16 How then can I #ver. 3answer him,
choosing my words with him?
15 # ch. 10:15 Though I am in the right, I cannot answer him;
I must #ch. 8:5appeal for mercy to my accuser.#9:15 Or to my judge
16If I summoned him and he answered me,
I would not believe that he was listening to my voice.
17For he crushes me with a tempest
and multiplies my wounds #ch. 2:3; [ch. 34:6]without cause;
18he will not let me get my breath,
but fills me with bitterness.
19If it is a contest of #[ver. 4] strength, behold, he is mighty!
If it is a matter of justice, who can #Jer. 49:19; 50:44summon him?#9:19 Or who can grant me a hearing?
20Though I am in the right, #ch. 15:6my own mouth would condemn me;
though I am blameless, he would prove me perverse.
21I am #ch. 1:1 blameless; I regard not myself;
I #ch. 7:16 (Heb.); [ch. 10:1]loathe my life.
22It is all one; therefore I say,
‘He #Eccles. 9:2, 3; Ezek. 21:3destroys both the blameless and the wicked.’
23When #Isa. 10:26disaster brings sudden death,
he mocks at the calamity#9:23 The meaning of the Hebrew word is uncertain of the innocent.
24 # [ch. 10:3] The earth is given into the hand of the wicked;
he #See ch. 12:17 covers the faces of its judges—
# [ch. 24:25] if it is not he, who then is it?
25“My #ch. 7:6 days are swifter than #[2 Chr. 30:6; Jer. 51:31]a runner;
they flee away; they see no good.
26They go by like #[Isa. 18:2] skiffs of reed,
like #Hab. 1:8an eagle swooping on the prey.
27If I say, #[ch. 7:13] ‘I will forget my complaint,
I will put off my sad face, and #Ps. 39:13be of good cheer,’
28I become #[Ps. 119:120] afraid of all my suffering,
for I know you will not #ch. 10:14hold me innocent.
29I shall be #[ch. 10:2]condemned;
why then do I labor in vain?
30If I wash myself with snow
and #Isa. 1:25; Jer. 2:22; See ch. 22:30cleanse my hands with lye,
31yet you will plunge me into a pit,
and my own clothes will #ch. 19:19; 30:10abhor me.
32For he is not a man, as I am, that I might answer him,
that we should #Eccles. 6:10; Rom. 9:20come to trial together.
33 # ver. 19; 1 Sam. 2:25; [ch. 16:21] There is no#9:33 Or Would that there were an arbiter between us,
who might lay his hand on us both.
34 # [Ps. 39:10] Let him take his #ch. 21:9; Ps. 89:32; Isa. 10:24 rod away from me,
and let #[ch. 13:21; 33:7]not dread of him terrify me.
35Then I would speak without fear of him,
for I am not so in myself.