Eliphaz Answers Job
1Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered:
2“A wise person would not answer with empty words
or fill his stomach with the hot east wind.
3He would not argue with useless words
or make speeches that have no value.
4But you even destroy respect for God
and limit the worship of him.
5Your sin teaches your mouth what to say;
you use words to trick others.
6It is your own mouth, not mine, that shows you are wicked;
your own lips testify against you.
7“You are not the first man ever born;
you are not older than the hills.
8You did not listen in on God’s secret council.
But you limit wisdom to yourself.
9You don’t know any more than we know.
You don’t understand any more than we understand.
10Old people with gray hair are on our side;
they are even older than your father.
11Is the comfort God gives you not enough for you,
even when words are spoken gently to you?
12Has your heart carried you away from God?
Why do your eyes flash with anger?
13Why do you speak out your anger against God?
Why do these words pour out of your mouth?
14“How can anyone be pure?
How can someone born to a woman be good?
15God places no trust in his holy ones,
and even the heavens are not pure in his eyes.
16How much less pure is one who is terrible and rotten
and drinks up evil as if it were water!
17“Listen to me, and I will tell you about it;
I will tell you what I have seen.
18These are things wise men have told;
their ancestors told them, and they have hidden nothing.
19(The land was given to their fathers only,
and no foreigner lived among them.)
20The wicked suffer pain all their lives;
the cruel suffer during all the years saved up for them.
21Terrible sounds fill their ears,
and when things seem to be going well, robbers attack them.
22Evil people give up trying to escape from the darkness;
it has been decided that they will die by the sword.
23They wander around and will become food for vultures.
They know darkness will soon come.
24Worry and suffering terrify them;
they overwhelm them, like a king ready to attack,
25because they shake their fists at God
and try to get their own way against the Almighty.
26They stubbornly charge at God
with thick, strong shields.
27“Although the faces of the wicked are thick with fat,
and their bellies are fat with flesh,
28they will live in towns that are ruined,
in houses where no one lives,
which are crumbling into ruins.
29The wicked will no longer get rich,
and the riches they have will not last;
the things they own will no longer spread over the land.
30They will not escape the darkness.
A flame will dry up their branches;
God’s breath will carry the wicked away.
31The wicked should not fool themselves by trusting what is useless.
If they do, they will get nothing in return.
32Their branches will dry up before they finish growing
and will never turn green.
33They will be like a vine whose grapes are pulled off before they are ripe,
like an olive tree that loses its blossoms.
34People without God can produce nothing.
Fire will destroy the tents of those who take money to do evil,
35who plan trouble and give birth to evil,
whose hearts plan ways to trick others.”