Job’s Third Speech: A Response to Bildad
1Then#Hebrew “And” Job answered and said,
2“Truly I know that it is so,
but#Hebrew “and” how can a human being be just before God?
3If he wants to contend with him,
he cannot answer him one time in a thousand.
4He is wise in#Hebrew “of” heart and mighty in#Hebrew “of” strength;
who has resisted him and succeeded?#Literally “he succeeded”
5“He is the one who moves mountains, and they do not know how,
who overturns them in his anger.
6He is the one who shakes the earth from its place,
and its pillars tremble.
7He is the one who commands the sun, and it does not rise,
and he seals up the stars.#Literally “and behind the stars he seals up”
8He is the one who alone stretches out the heavens
and who tramples on the waves of the sea.
9He is the one who made the Bear and Orion,
the Pleiades and the constellations of the south.
10He is the one who does great things beyond understanding#Literally “until there is not understanding”
and marvelous things beyond number.#Literally “until there is not number”
11“If#Literally “Look” he passes by me, I would not see him;#Literally “and I would not see”
and if he should move on, I would not recognize him.#Literally “and I would not recognize him”
12If#Literally “Look” he would snatch away, who could turn him?
Who could say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13God will not turn back his anger;
beneath him the helpers of Rahab bow.
14How much less#Literally “Also for” can I myself#Emphatic personal pronoun answer him?
How can I choose my words with him,
15whom I cannot answer, even though I am righteous?
From#Hebrew “To” my judge I must implore grace.
16If I summon him, and he should answer me,
I do not believe that he will listen to my voice—
17who crushes me with a tempest
and multiplies#Hebrew “he multiplies” my wounds without cause.
18He will not allow me to catch#Literally “return,” or “regain” my breath;
rather, he will fill me with bitterness.
19If it is a matter of#Literally “for”; see NASB, NIV, NET strength, look, he is mighty.
But#Hebrew “And” if it is a matter of#Literally “for”; NASB, NIV, NET, NRSV justice, who can summon me?#Or “arraign me”
20Even though I am righteous, my mouth will condemn me;
even though I am blameless, yet#Hebrew “and” it would pronounce me guilty.
21“I am blameless; I do not care about myself;#Perhaps the meaning is “but it makes no difference to me” (NLT)
I loathe my life.
22It is all one; therefore I say,
‘He destroys both the blameless and the wicked.’
23When the whip#Or “scourge” kills suddenly,
he mocks at the despair of the innocent.
24The earth is given into the hand of the wicked;
he covers the face of its judge—
if it is not he, then who is it?
25“And my days are swifter than a runner;
they flee away; they do not see good.
26They go by like papyrus skiffs,
like an eagle swoops down on its prey.
27Though#Or “If” I say,#Literally “my saying” ‘I will forget my complaint;
I will change my expression, and I will rejoice,’
28I become afraid of all my sufferings;
I know that you do not consider me innocent.
29If I shall be declared guilty,
why then should I labor in vain?
30If I wash myself with soap,#Or “with snow,” or “in snow”
and I cleanse my hands with lye,
31then you plunge me into the slime pit,
and my clothes abhor me.
32“For#Or the emphatic “Indeed” he is not a mortal like me that I can answer him,
that we can come to trial together.#Literally “we come together in the justice,” or “we come together in the judgment”
33There is no arbiter between us
that he might lay his hand on both of us.
34May he remove his rod from me,
and let his dread not terrify me;
35then I would speak and not fear him,#Hebrew “and I will not fear him”
for in myself I am not fearful.#Literally “not so I with me”