Job 33-36

January 31, 2024

Job 33

But now, Job, pay attention to my speech,
and listen to all my words.
2 I am going to open my mouth;
my tongue will form words on my palate.
3 My words come from my upright heart,
and my lips speak with sincerity what they know.
4 The Spirit of God has made me,
and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.
5 Refute me if you can.
Prepare your case against me; take your stand.
6 I am just like you before God;
I was also pinched off from a piece of clay.
7 Fear of me should not terrify you;
no pressure from me should weigh you down.
8 Surely you have spoken in my hearing,
and I have heard these very words:
9 “I am pure, without transgression;
I am clean and have no iniquity.
10 But he finds reasons to oppose me;
he regards me as his enemy.
11 He puts my feet in the stocks;
he stands watch over all my paths.”
12 But I tell you that you are wrong in this matter,
since God is greater than man.
13 Why do you take him to court
for not answering anything a person asks?
14 For God speaks time and again,
but a person may not notice it.
15 In a dream, a vision in the night,
when deep sleep comes over people
as they slumber on their beds,
16 he uncovers their ears
and terrifies them with warnings,
17 in order to turn a person from his actions
and suppress the pride of a person.
18 God spares his soul from the Pit,
his life from crossing the river of death.
19 A person may be disciplined on his bed with pain
and constant distress in his bones,
20 so that he detests bread,
and his soul despises his favorite food.
21 His flesh wastes away to nothing,
and his unseen bones stick out.
22 He draws near to the Pit,
and his life to the executioners.
23 If there is an angel on his side,
one mediator out of a thousand,
to tell a person what is right for him
24 and to be gracious to him and say,
“Spare him from going down to the Pit;
I have found a ransom,”
25 then his flesh will be healthier than in his youth,
and he will return to the days of his youthful vigor.
26 He will pray to God, and God will delight in him.
That person will see his face with a shout of joy,
and God will restore his righteousness to him.
27 He will look at men and say,
“I have sinned and perverted what was right;
yet I did not get what I deserved.
28 He redeemed my soul from going down to the Pit,
and I will continue to see the light.”
29 God certainly does all these things
two or three times to a person
30 in order to turn him back from the Pit,
so he may shine with the light of life.
31 Pay attention, Job, and listen to me.
Be quiet, and I will speak.
32 But if you have something to say, answer me;
speak, for I would like to justify you.
33 If not, then listen to me;
be quiet, and I will teach you wisdom.

Job 34

Then Elihu continued, saying:
2 Hear my words, you wise ones,
and listen to me, you knowledgeable ones.
3 Doesn’t the ear test words
as the palate tastes food?
4 Let us judge for ourselves what is right;
let us decide together what is good.
5 For Job has declared, “I am righteous,
yet God has deprived me of justice.
6 Would I lie about my case?
My wound is incurable,
though I am without transgression.”
7 What man is like Job?
He drinks derision like water.
8 He keeps company with evildoers
and walks with wicked men.
9 For he has said, “A man gains nothing
when he becomes God’s friend.”
10 Therefore listen to me, you men of understanding.
It is impossible for God to do wrong,
and for the Almighty to act unjustly.
11 For he repays a person according to his deeds,
and he gives him what his conduct deserves.
12 Indeed, it is true that God does not act wickedly
and the Almighty does not pervert justice.
13 Who gave him authority over the earth?
Who put him in charge of the entire world?
14 If he put his mind to it
and withdrew the spirit and breath he gave,
15 every living thing would perish together
and mankind would return to the dust.
16 If you have understanding, hear this;
listen to what I have to say.
17 Could one who hates justice govern the world?
Will you condemn the mighty Righteous One,
18 who says to a king, “Worthless man! ”
and to nobles, “Wicked men! ”?
19 God is not partial to princes
and does not favor the rich over the poor,
for they are all the work of his hands.
20 They die suddenly in the middle of the night;
people shudder, then pass away.
Even the mighty are removed without effort.
21 For his eyes watch over a man’s ways,
and he observes all his steps.
22 There is no darkness, no deep darkness,
where evildoers can hide.
23 God does not need to examine a person further,
that one should approach him in court.
24 He shatters the mighty without an investigation
and sets others in their place.
25 Therefore, he recognizes their deeds
and overthrows them by night, and they are crushed.
26 In full view of the public,
he strikes them for their wickedness,
27 because they turned aside from following him
and did not understand any of his ways
28 but caused the poor to cry out to him,
and he heard the outcry of the needy.
29 But when God is silent, who can declare him guilty?
When he hides his face, who can see him?
Yet he watches over both individuals and nations,
30 so that godless men should not rule
or ensnare the people.
31 Suppose someone says to God,
“I have endured my punishment;
I will no longer act wickedly.
32 Teach me what I cannot see;
if I have done wrong, I won’t do it again.”
33 Should God repay you on your terms
when you have rejected his?
You must choose, not I!
So declare what you know.
34 Reasonable men will say to me,
along with the wise men who hear me,
35 “Job speaks without knowledge;
his words are without insight.”
36 If only Job were tested to the limit,
because his answers are like those of wicked men.
37 For he adds rebellion to his sin;
he scornfully claps in our presence,
while multiplying his words against God.

Job 35

Then Elihu continued, saying:
2 Do you think it is just when you say,
“I am righteous before God”?
3 For you ask, “What does it profit you,
and what benefit comes to me, if I do not sin? ”
4 I will answer you
and your friends with you.
5 Look at the heavens and see;
gaze at the clouds high above you.
6 If you sin, how does it affect God?
If you multiply your transgressions, what does it do to him?
7 If you are righteous, what do you give him,
or what does he receive from your hand?
8 Your wickedness affects a person like yourself,
and your righteousness, a son of man.
9 People cry out because of severe oppression;
they shout for help because of the power of the mighty.
10 But no one asks, “Where is God my Maker,
who provides us with songs in the night,
11 who gives us more understanding than the animals of the earth
and makes us wiser than the birds of the sky? ”
12 There they cry out, but he does not answer,
because of the pride of evil people.
13 Indeed, God does not listen to empty cries,
and the Almighty does not take note of it —
14 how much less when you complain
that you do not see him,
that your case is before him
and you are waiting for him.
15 But now, because God’s anger does not punish
and he does not pay attention to transgression,
16 Job opens his mouth in vain
and multiplies words without knowledge.

Job 36

Then Elihu continued, saying:
2 Be patient with me a little longer, and I will inform you,
for there is still more to be said on God’s behalf.
3 I will get my knowledge from a distant place
and ascribe justice to my Maker.
4 Indeed, my words are not false;
one who has complete knowledge is with you.
5 Yes, God is mighty, but he despises no one;
he understands all things.
6 He does not keep the wicked alive,
but he gives justice to the oppressed.
7 He does not withdraw his gaze from the righteous,
but he seats them forever with enthroned kings,
and they are exalted.
8 If people are bound with chains
and trapped by the cords of affliction,
9 God tells them what they have done
and how arrogantly they have transgressed.
10 He opens their ears to correction
and tells them to repent from iniquity.
11 If they listen and serve him,
they will end their days in prosperity
and their years in happiness.
12 But if they do not listen,
they will cross the river of death
and die without knowledge.
13 Those who have a godless heart harbor anger;
even when God binds them, they do not cry for help.
14 They die in their youth;
their life ends among male cult prostitutes.
15 God rescues the afflicted by their affliction;
he instructs them by their torment.
16 Indeed, he lured you from the jaws of distress
to a spacious and unconfined place.
Your table was spread with choice food.
17 Yet now you are obsessed with the judgment due the wicked;
judgment and justice have seized you.
18 Be careful that no one lures you with riches;
do not let a large ransom lead you astray.
19 Can your wealth or all your physical exertion
keep you from distress?
20 Do not long for the night
when nations will disappear from their places.
21 Be careful that you do not turn to iniquity,
for that is why you have been tested by affliction.
22 Look, God shows himself exalted by his power.
Who is a teacher like him?
23 Who has appointed his way for him,
and who has declared, “You have done wrong”?
24 Remember that you should praise his work,
which people have sung about.
25 All mankind has seen it;
people have looked at it from a distance.
26 Yes, God is exalted beyond our knowledge;
the number of his years cannot be counted.
27 For he makes waterdrops evaporate;
they distill the rain into its mist,
28 which the clouds pour out
and shower abundantly on mankind.
29 Can anyone understand how the clouds spread out
or how the thunder roars from God’s pavilion?
30 See how he spreads his lightning around him
and covers the depths of the sea.
31 For he judges the nations with these;
he gives food in abundance.
32 He covers his hands with lightning
and commands it to hit its mark.
33 The thunder declares his presence;
the cattle also, the approaching storm.

— Job 33:1-36:33 (CSB)