JOB 28-30

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Job Tells of Earth’s Treasures
28:1 “Surely there is a mine for silver
And a place where they refine gold.
2 “Iron is taken from the dust,
And copper is smelted from rock.
3 Man puts an end to darkness,
And to the farthest limit he searches out
The rock in gloom and deep shadow.
4 “He sinks a shaft far from habitation,
Forgotten by the foot;
They hang and swing to and fro far from men.
5 “The earth, from it comes food,
And underneath it is turned up as fire.
6 “Its rocks are the source of sapphires,
And its dust contains gold.
7 “The path no bird of prey knows,
Nor has the falcon’s eye caught sight of it.
8 “The proud beasts have not trodden it,
Nor has the fierce lion passed over it.
9 “He puts his hand on the flint;
He overturns the mountains at the base.
10 “He hews out channels through the rocks,
And his eye sees anything precious.
11 “He dams up the streams from flowing,
And what is hidden he brings out to the light.
The Search for Wisdom Is Harder
12 “But where can wisdom be found?
And where is the place of understanding?
13 “Man does not know its value,
Nor is it found in the land of the living.
14 “The deep says, ‘It is not in me’;
And the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’
15 “Pure gold cannot be given in exchange for it,
Nor can silver be weighed as its price.
16 “It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir,
In precious onyx, or sapphire.
17 “Gold or glass cannot equal it,
Nor can it be exchanged for articles of fine gold.
18 “Coral and crystal are not to be mentioned;
And the acquisition of wisdom is above that of pearls.
19 “The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it,
Nor can it be valued in pure gold.
20 “Where then does wisdom come from?
And where is the place of understanding?
21 “Thus it is hidden from the eyes of all living
And concealed from the birds of the sky.
22 “Abaddon and Death say,
‘With our ears we have heard a report of it.’

23 “God understands its way,
And He knows its place.
24 “For He looks to the ends of the earth
And sees everything under the heavens.
25 “When He imparted weight to the wind
And meted out the waters by measure,
26 When He set a limit for the rain
And a course for the thunderbolt,
27 Then He saw it and declared it;
He established it and also searched it out.
28 “And to man He said, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom;
And to depart from evil is understanding.’”

Job’s Past Was Glorious
  29:1 And Job again took up his discourse and said,
2 “Oh that I were as in months gone by,
As in the days when God watched over me;
3 When His lamp shone over my head,
And by His light I walked through darkness;
4 As I was in the prime of my days,
When the friendship of God was over my tent;
5 When the Almighty was yet with me,
And my children were around me;
6 When my steps were bathed in butter,
And the rock poured out for me streams of oil!
7 “When I went out to the gate of the city,
When I took my seat in the square,
8 The young men saw me and hid themselves,
And the old men arose and stood.
9 “The princes stopped talking
And put their hands on their mouths;
10 The voice of the nobles was hushed,
And their tongue stuck to their palate.
11 “For when the ear heard, it called me blessed,
And when the eye saw, it gave witness of me,
12 Because I delivered the poor who cried for help,
And the orphan who had no helper.
13 “The blessing of the one ready to perish came upon me,
And I made the widow’s heart sing for joy.
14 “I put on righteousness, and it clothed me;
My justice was like a robe and a turban.
15 “I was eyes to the blind
And feet to the lame.
16 “I was a father to the needy,
And I investigated the case which I did not know.
17 “I broke the jaws of the wicked
And snatched the prey from his teeth.
18 “Then I thought, ‘I shall die in my nest,
And I shall multiply my days as the sand.
19 ‘My root is spread out to the waters,
And dew lies all night on my branch.
20 ‘My glory is ever new with me,
And my bow is renewed in my hand.’

21 “To me they listened and waited,
And kept silent for my counsel.
22 “After my words they did not speak again,
And my speech dropped on them.
23 “They waited for me as for the rain,
And opened their mouth as for the spring rain.
24 “I smiled on them when they did not believe,
And the light of my face they did not cast down.
25 “I chose a way for them and sat as chief,
And dwelt as a king among the troops,
As one who comforted the mourners.

Job’s Present State Is Humiliating
30:1 “But now those younger than I mock me,
Whose fathers I disdained to put with the dogs of my flock.
2 “Indeed, what good was the strength of their hands to me?
Vigor had perished from them.
3 “From want and famine they are gaunt
Who gnaw the dry ground by night in waste and desolation,
4 Who pluck mallow by the bushes,
And whose food is the root of the broom shrub.
5 “They are driven from the community;
They shout against them as against a thief,
6 So that they dwell in dreadful valleys,
In holes of the earth and of the rocks.
7 “Among the bushes they cry out;
Under the nettles they are gathered together.
8 “Fools, even those without a name,
They were scourged from the land.

9 “And now I have become their taunt,
I have even become a byword to them.
10 “They abhor me and stand aloof from me,
And they do not refrain from spitting at my face.
11 “Because He has loosed His bowstring and afflicted me,
They have cast off the bridle before me.
12 “On the right hand their brood arises;
They thrust aside my feet and build up against me their ways of destruction.
13 “They break up my path,
They profit from my destruction;
No one restrains them.
14 “As through a wide breach they come,
Amid the tempest they roll on.
15 “Terrors are turned against me;
They pursue my honor as the wind,
And my prosperity has passed away like a cloud.

16 “And now my soul is poured out within me;
Days of affliction have seized me.
17 “At night it pierces my bones within me,
And my gnawing pains take no rest.
18 “By a great force my garment is distorted;
It binds me about as the collar of my coat.
19 “He has cast me into the mire,
And I have become like dust and ashes.
20 “I cry out to You for help, but You do not answer me;
I stand up, and You turn Your attention against me.
21 “You have become cruel to me;
With the might of Your hand You persecute me.
22 “You lift me up to the wind and cause me to ride;
And You dissolve me in a storm.
23 “For I know that You will bring me to death
And to the house of meeting for all living.

24 “Yet does not one in a heap of ruins stretch out his hand,
Or in his disaster therefore cry out for help?
25 “Have I not wept for the one whose life is hard?
Was not my soul grieved for the needy?
26 “When I expected good, then evil came;
When I waited for light, then darkness came.
27 “I am seething within and cannot relax;
Days of affliction confront me.
28 “I go about mourning without comfort;
I stand up in the assembly and cry out for help.
29 “I have become a brother to jackals
And a companion of ostriches.
30 “My skin turns black on me,
And my bones burn with fever.
31 “Therefore my harp is turned to mourning,
And my flute to the sound of those who weep.

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