August 8 – Job 12 thru 14 from the Old Testament

Job 12 thru 14 – Job’s Reply to Zophar

12:1 Then Job answered:

12:2 “Without a doubt you are the people,

and wisdom will die with you.

12:3 I also have understanding as well as you;

I am not inferior to you.

Who does not know such things as these?

12:4 I am a laughingstock to my friends,

I, who called on God and whom he answered –

a righteous and blameless man

is a laughingstock!

12:5 For calamity, there is derision

(according to the ideas of the fortunate) –

a fate for those whose feet slip!

12:6 But the tents of robbers are peaceful,

and those who provoke God are confident –

who carry their god in their hands.

Knowledge of God’s Wisdom

12:7 “But now, ask the animals and they will teach you,

or the birds of the sky and they will tell you.

12:8 Or speak to the earth and it will teach you,

or let the fish of the sea declare to you.

12:9 Which of all these does not know

that the hand of the Lord has done this,

12:10 in whose hand is the life of every creature

and the breath of all the human race.

12:11 Does not the ear test words,

as the tongue tastes food?

12:12 Is not wisdom found among the aged?

Does not long life bring understanding?


12:13 “With God are wisdom and power;

counsel and understanding are his.

12:14 If he tears down, it cannot be rebuilt;

if he imprisons a person, there is no escape.

12:15 If he holds back the waters, then they dry up;

if he releases them, they destroy the land.

12:16 With him are strength and prudence;

both the one who goes astray

and the one who misleads are his.

12:17 He leads counselors away stripped

and makes judges into fools.

12:18 He loosens the bonds of kings

and binds a loincloth around their waist.

12:19 He leads priests away stripped

and overthrows the potentates.

12:20 He deprives the trusted advisers of speech

and takes away the discernment of elders.

12:21 He pours contempt on noblemen

and disarms the powerful.

12:22 He reveals the deep things of darkness,

and brings deep shadows into the light.

12:23 He makes nations great, and destroys them;

he extends the boundaries of nations

and disperses them.

12:24 He deprives the leaders of the earth

of their understanding;

he makes them wander

in a trackless desert waste.

12:25 They grope about in darkness without light;

he makes them stagger like drunkards.

Job Pleads His Cause to God

13:1 “Indeed, my eyes have seen all this,

my ears have heard and understood it.

13:2 What you know, I know also;

I am not inferior to you!

13:3 But I wish to speak to the Almighty,

and I desire to argue my case with God.

13:4 But you, however, are inventors of lies;

all of you are worthless physicians!

13:5 If only you would keep completely silent!

For you, that would be wisdom.


13:6 “Listen now to my argument,

and be attentive to my lips’ contentions.

13:7 Will you speak wickedly on God’s behalf?

Will you speak deceitfully for him?

13:8 Will you show him partiality?

Will you argue the case for God?

13:9 Would it turn out well if he would examine you?

Or as one deceives a man would you deceive him?

13:10 He would certainly rebuke you

if you secretly showed partiality!

13:11 Would not his splendor terrify you

and the fear he inspires fall on you?

13:12 Your maxims are proverbs of ashes;

your defenses are defenses of clay.

13:13 “Refrain from talking with me so that I may speak;

then let come to me what may.

13:14 Why do I put myself in peril,

and take my life in my hands?

13:15 Even if he slays me, I will hope in him;

I will surely defend my ways to his face!

13:16 Moreover, this will become my deliverance,

for no godless person would come before him.

13:17 Listen carefully to my words;

let your ears be attentive to my explanation.

13:18 See now, I have prepared my case;

I know that I am right.

13:19 Who will contend with me?

If anyone can, I will be silent and die.

13:20 Only in two things spare me, O God,

and then I will not hide from your face:

13:21 Remove your hand far from me

and stop making me afraid with your terror.

13:22 Then call, and I will answer,

or I will speak, and you respond to me.

13:23 How many are my iniquities and sins?

Show me my transgression and my sin.

13:24 Why do you hide your face

and regard me as your enemy?

13:25 Do you wish to torment a windblown leaf

and chase after dry chaff?

13:26 For you write down bitter things against me

and cause me to inherit the sins of my youth.

13:27 And you put my feet in the stocks

and you watch all my movements;

you put marks on the soles of my feet.

13:28 So I waste away like something rotten,

like a garment eaten by moths.

The Brevity of Life

14:1 “Man, born of woman,

lives but a few days, and they are full of trouble.

14:2 He grows up like a flower and then withers away;

he flees like a shadow, and does not remain.

14:3 Do you fix your eye on such a one?

And do you bring me before you for judgment?

14:4 Who can make a clean thing come from an unclean?

No one!

14:5 Since man’s days are determined,

the number of his months is under your control;

you have set his limit and he cannot pass it.

14:6 Look away from him and let him desist,

until he fulfills his time like a hired man.

The Inevitability of Death

14:7 “But there is hope for a tree:

If it is cut down, it will sprout again,

and its new shoots will not fail.

14:8 Although its roots may grow old in the ground

and its stump begins to die in the soil,

14:9 at the scent of water it will flourish

and put forth shoots like a new plant.

14:10 But man dies and is powerless;

he expires – and where is he?

14:11 As water disappears from the sea,

or a river drains away and dries up,

14:12 so man lies down and does not rise;

until the heavens are no more,

they will not awake

nor arise from their sleep.

The Possibility of Another Life

14:13 “O that you would hide me in Sheol,

and conceal me till your anger has passed!

O that you would set me a time

and then remember me!

14:14 If a man dies, will he live again?

All the days of my hard service I will wait

until my release comes.

14:15 You will call and I – I will answer you;

you will long for the creature you have made.

The Present Condition

14:16 “Surely now you count my steps;

then you would not mark my sin.

14:17 My offenses would be sealed up in a bag;

you would cover over my sin.

14:18 But as a mountain falls away and crumbles,

and as a rock will be removed from its place,

14:19 as water wears away stones,

and torrents wash away the soil,

so you destroy man’s hope.

14:20 You overpower him once for all,

and he departs;

you change his appearance

and send him away.

14:21 If his sons are honored,

he does not know it;

if they are brought low,

he does not see it.

14:22 Only his flesh has pain for himself,

and he mourns for himself.”

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