The First Speech of Zophar
1Then Zophar the Naamathite replied,
2"Don't all of your words require an answer?
I'm sure that what you are saying can't be right.
3Your useless talk won't keep us quiet.
Someone has to correct you when you make fun of truth.
4You say to God, 'My beliefs are perfect.
I'm pure in your sight.'
5I wish God would speak.
I wish he'd answer you.
6I wish he'd show you the secrets of wisdom.
After all, true wisdom has two sides.
Here's what I want you to know.
God has forgotten some of your sins.
7"Do you know how deep the mysteries of God are?
Can you discover the limits of the Mighty One's knowledge?
8They are higher than the heavens.
What can you do?
They are deeper than the deepest grave.
What can you know?
9They are longer than the earth.
They are wider than the ocean.
10"Suppose God comes along and puts you in prison.
Suppose he takes you to court.
Then who can oppose him?
11He certainly knows when people tell lies.
When he sees evil, he pays careful attention to it.
12A wild donkey's colt can't be born a human being.
And a man who doesn't have any sense can't become wise.
13"So commit yourself to God completely.
Reach out your hands to him for help.
14Get rid of all of the sin you have.
Don't let anything that is evil stay in your tent.
15Then you can face others without feeling any shame.
You can stand firm without being afraid.
16You can be sure you will forget your troubles.
They will be like water that has flowed on by.
17Life will be brighter than the sun at noon.
And darkness will become like morning.
18You will be secure, because there is hope.
You will look around you and find a safe place to rest.
19You will lie down, and no one will make you afraid.
Many people will want you to show them your favor.
20But sinful people won't find what they are looking for.
They won't be able to escape.
All they can hope for is to die."