JOB 20-22

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Zophar Says, “The Triumph of the Wicked Is Short”
  20:1 Then Zophar the Naamathite answered,
2 “Therefore my disquieting thoughts make me respond,
Even because of my inward agitation.
3 “I listened to the reproof which insults me,
And the spirit of my understanding makes me answer.
4 “Do you know this from of old,
From the establishment of man on earth,
5 That the triumphing of the wicked is short,
And the joy of the godless momentary?
6 “Though his loftiness reaches the heavens,
And his head touches the clouds,
7 He perishes forever like his refuse;
Those who have seen him will say, ‘Where is he?’
8 “He flies away like a dream, and they cannot find him;
Even like a vision of the night he is chased away.
9 “The eye which saw him sees him no longer,
And his place no longer beholds him.
10 “His sons favor the poor,
And his hands give back his wealth.
11 “His bones are full of his youthful vigor,
But it lies down with him in the dust.

12 “Though evil is sweet in his mouth
And he hides it under his tongue,
13 Though he desires it and will not let it go,
But holds it in his mouth,
14 Yet his food in his stomach is changed
To the venom of cobras within him.
15 “He swallows riches,
But will vomit them up;
God will expel them from his belly.
16 “He sucks the poison of cobras;
The viper’s tongue slays him.
17 “He does not look at the streams,
The rivers flowing with honey and curds.
18 “He returns what he has attained
And cannot swallow it;
As to the riches of his trading,
He cannot even enjoy them.
19 “For he has oppressed and forsaken the poor;
He has seized a house which he has not built.

20 “Because he knew no quiet within him,
He does not retain anything he desires.
21 “Nothing remains for him to devour,
Therefore his prosperity does not endure.
22 “In the fullness of his plenty he will be cramped;
The hand of everyone who suffers will come against him.
23 “When he fills his belly,
God will send His fierce anger on him
And will rain it on him while he is eating.
24 “He may flee from the iron weapon,
But the bronze bow will pierce him.
25 “It is drawn forth and comes out of his back,
Even the glittering point from his gall.
Terrors come upon him,
26 Complete darkness is held in reserve for his treasures,
And unfanned fire will devour him;
It will consume the survivor in his tent.
27 “The heavens will reveal his iniquity,
And the earth will rise up against him.
28 “The increase of his house will depart;
His possessions will flow away in the day of His anger.
29 “This is the wicked man’s portion from God,
Even the heritage decreed to him by God.”

Job Says God Will Deal with the Wicked
  21:1 Then Job answered,
2 “Listen carefully to my speech,
And let this be your way of consolation.
3 “Bear with me that I may speak;
Then after I have spoken, you may mock.
4 “As for me, is my complaint to man?
And why should I not be impatient?
5 “Look at me, and be astonished,
And put your hand over your mouth.
6 “Even when I remember, I am disturbed,
And horror takes hold of my flesh.
7 “Why do the wicked still live,
Continue on, also become very powerful?
8 “Their descendants are established with them in their sight,
And their offspring before their eyes,
9 Their houses are safe from fear,
And the rod of God is not on them.
10 “His ox mates without fail;
His cow calves and does not abort.
11 “They send forth their little ones like the flock,
And their children skip about.
12 “They sing to the timbrel and harp
And rejoice at the sound of the flute.
13 “They spend their days in prosperity,
And suddenly they go down to Sheol.
14 “They say to God, ‘Depart from us!
We do not even desire the knowledge of Your ways.
15 ‘Who is the Almighty, that we should serve Him,
And what would we gain if we entreat Him?’
16 “Behold, their prosperity is not in their hand;
The counsel of the wicked is far from me.

17 “How often is the lamp of the wicked put out,
Or does their calamity fall on them?
Does God apportion destruction in His anger?
18 “Are they as straw before the wind,
And like chaff which the storm carries away?
19 You say, ‘God stores away a man’s iniquity for his sons.’
Let God repay him so that he may know it.
20 “Let his own eyes see his decay,
And let him drink of the wrath of the Almighty.
21 “For what does he care for his household after him,
When the number of his months is cut off?
22 “Can anyone teach God knowledge,
In that He judges those on high?
23 “One dies in his full strength,
Being wholly at ease and satisfied;
24 His sides are filled out with fat,
And the marrow of his bones is moist,
25 While another dies with a bitter soul,
Never even tasting anything good.
26 “Together they lie down in the dust,
And worms cover them.

27 “Behold, I know your thoughts,
And the plans by which you would wrong me.
28 “For you say, ‘Where is the house of the nobleman,
And where is the tent, the dwelling places of the wicked?’
29 “Have you not asked wayfaring men,
And do you not recognize their witness?
30 “For the wicked is reserved for the day of calamity;
They will be led forth at the day of fury.
31 “Who will confront him with his actions,
And who will repay him for what he has done?
32 “While he is carried to the grave,
Men will keep watch over his tomb.
33 “The clods of the valley will gently cover him;
Moreover, all men will follow after him,
While countless ones go before him.
34 “How then will you vainly comfort me,
For your answers remain full of falsehood?”

Eliphaz Accuses and Exhorts Job
  22:1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite responded,
2 “Can a vigorous man be of use to God,
Or a wise man be useful to himself?
3 “Is there any pleasure to the Almighty if you are righteous,
Or profit if you make your ways perfect?
4 “Is it because of your reverence that He reproves you,
That He enters into judgment against you?
5 “Is not your wickedness great,
And your iniquities without end?
6 “For you have taken pledges of your brothers without cause,
And stripped men naked.
7 “To the weary you have given no water to drink,
And from the hungry you have withheld bread.
8 “But the earth belongs to the mighty man,
And the honorable man dwells in it.
9 “You have sent widows away empty,
And the strength of the orphans has been crushed.
10 “Therefore snares surround you,
And sudden dread terrifies you,
11 Or darkness, so that you cannot see,
And an abundance of water covers you.

12 “Is not God in the height of heaven?
Look also at the distant stars, how high they are!
13 “You say, ‘What does God know?
Can He judge through the thick darkness?
14 ‘Clouds are a hiding place for Him, so that He cannot see;
And He walks on the vault of heaven.’
15 “Will you keep to the ancient path
Which wicked men have trod,
16 Who were snatched away before their time,
Whose foundations were washed away by a river?
17 “They said to God, ‘Depart from us!’
And ‘What can the Almighty do to them?’
18 “Yet He filled their houses with good things;
But the counsel of the wicked is far from me.
19 “The righteous see and are glad,
And the innocent mock them,
20 Saying, ‘Truly our adversaries are cut off,
And their abundance the fire has consumed.’

21 “Yield now and be at peace with Him;
Thereby good will come to you.
22 “Please receive instruction from His mouth
And establish His words in your heart.
23 “If you return to the Almighty, you will be restored;
If you remove unrighteousness far from your tent,
24 And place your gold in the dust,
And the gold of Ophir among the stones of the brooks,
25 Then the Almighty will be your gold
And choice silver to you.
26 “For then you will delight in the Almighty
And lift up your face to God.
27 “You will pray to Him, and He will hear you;
And you will pay your vows.
28 “You will also decree a thing, and it will be established for you;
And light will shine on your ways.
29 “When you are cast down, you will speak with confidence,
And the humble person He will save.
30 “He will deliver one who is not innocent,
And he will be delivered through the cleanness of your hands.”

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