Job 12



Job's Fourth Speech

1 Then Job responded,

1 And Job answered and said,

1 In response Job replied:

1 Then Job answered,

2 "Truly then you are the people, And with you wisdom will die!

2 No doubt but ye are the people, and wisdom shall die with you.

2 "Truly, you are the people and wisdom will die with you!

2 No doubt you are the [only wise] people [in the world], and wisdom will die with you!

3 "But I have intelligence as well as you; I am not inferior to you. And who does not know such things as these?

3 But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you: yea, who knoweth not such things as these?

3 Like you, I also have understanding. I'm not inferior to you; who doesn't know things like this?"

3 But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Who does not know such things as these [of God's wisdom and might]?

4 "I am a joke to my friends, The one who called on God and He answered him; The just and blameless man is a joke.

4 I am as one mocked of his neighbour, who calleth upon God, and he answereth him: the just upright man is laughed to scorn.

4 "I'm a laughingstock to my friends, someone who called on God. But then he answered this upright and blameless man, and I have become a laughingstock.

4 I am become one who is a laughingstock to his friend; I, one whom God answered when he called upon Him -- "a just, upright (blameless) man -- "laughed to scorn!

5 "He who is at ease holds calamity in contempt, As prepared for those whose feet slip.

5 He that is ready to slip with his feet is as a lamp despised in the thought of him that is at ease.

5 The carefree are thinking, "I have contempt for misfortune,' Those who are about to stumble deserve it.

5 In the thought of him who is at ease there is contempt for misfortune -- "but it is ready for those whose feet slip.

6 "The tents of the destroyers prosper, And those who provoke God are secure, Whom God brings into their power.

6 The tabernacles of robbers prosper, and they that provoke God are secure; into whose hand God bringeth abundantly.

6 The tents of robbers are at rest, and those who provoke God are secure, that is, those who carry their god in their pocket.

6 The dwellings of robbers prosper; those who provoke God are [apparently] secure; God supplies them abundantly [who have no god but their own hands and power].

If You Want To Learn

7 "But now ask the beasts, and let them teach you; And the birds of the heavens, and let them tell you.

7 But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee:

7 "Ask the wild animals, and they'll teach you; the birds of the sky will tell you.

7 For ask now the animals, and they will teach you [that God does not deal with His creatures according to their character]; ask the birds of the air, and they will tell you;

8 "Or speak to the earth, and let it teach you; And let the fish of the sea declare to you.

8 Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee.

8 Or ask the green plants of the earth and they'll teach you; let the fish in the sea tell you.

8 Or speak to the earth [with its other forms of life], and it will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare [this truth] to you.

9 "Who among all these does not know That the hand of the LORD has done this,

9 Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the LORD hath wrought this?

9 Who among all of these doesn't know that the LORD's hand made them,

9 Who [is so blind as] not to recognize in all these [that good and evil are promiscuously scattered throughout nature and human life] that it is God's hand which does it [and God's way]?

10 In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind?

10 In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.

10 and that the life of every living thing rests in his control, along with the breath of every living human being?

10 In His hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.

11 "Does not the ear test words, As the palate tastes its food?

11 Doth not the ear try words? and the mouth taste his meat?

11 The ear scrutinizes speech just as the palate tastes food."

11 Is it not the task of the ear to discriminate between [wise and unwise] words, just as the mouth distinguishes [between desirable and undesirable] food?

Wisdom Comes From God

12 "Wisdom is with aged men, With long life is understanding.

12 With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding.

12 "Wisdom may be found in the company of the aged. Understanding comes with longevity.

12 With the aged [you say] is wisdom, and with length of days comes understanding.

13 "With Him are wisdom and might; To Him belong counsel and understanding.

13 With him is wisdom and strength, he hath counsel and understanding.

13 With God is wisdom and strength; counsel and understanding belongs to him.

13 But [only] with [God] are [perfect] wisdom and might; He [alone] has [true] counsel and understanding.

14 "Behold, He tears down, and it cannot be rebuilt; He imprisons a man, and there can be no release.

14 Behold, he breaketh down, and it cannot be built again: he shutteth up a man, and there can be no opening.

14 When he tears down, nobody rebuilds; when he incarcerates, nobody escapes.

14 Behold, He tears down, and it cannot be built again; He shuts a man in, and none can open.

15 "Behold, He restrains the waters, and they dry up; And He sends them out, and they inundate the earth.

15 Behold, he withholdeth the waters, and they dry up: also he sendeth them out, and they overturn the earth.

15 When he withholds water, rivers dry up; when he lets them loose, they'll flood the land.

15 He withholds the waters, and the land dries up; again, He sends forth [rains], and they overwhelm the land or transform it.

16 "With Him are strength and sound wisdom, The misled and the misleader belong to Him.

16 With him is strength and wisdom: the deceived and the deceiver are his.

16 "With God are strength and sound wisdom; both the deceived and those who deceive are responsible to him.

16 With Him are might and wisdom; the deceived and the deceiver are His [and in His power].

17 "He makes counselors walk barefoot And makes fools of judges.

17 He leadeth counsellers away spoiled, and maketh the judges fools.

17 He leads counselors away naked; he turns judges into fools.

17 He leads [great and scheming] counselors away stripped and barefoot and makes the judges fools [in human estimation, by overthrowing their plans].

18 "He loosens the bond of kings And binds their loins with a girdle.

18 He looseth the bond of kings, and girdeth their loins with a girdle.

18 He strips away the authority of kings to punish and puts them in prison clothes instead.

18 He looses the fetters [ordered] by kings and has [the] waistcloth [of a slave] bound about their [own] loins.

19 "He makes priests walk barefoot And overthrows the secure ones.

19 He leadeth princes away spoiled, and overthroweth the mighty.

19 He leads away the priests naked and overthrows the ruling class.

19 He leads away priests as spoil, and men firmly seated He overturns.

20 "He deprives the trusted ones of speech And takes away the discernment of the elders.

20 He removeth away the speech of the trusty, and taketh away the understanding of the aged.

20 He keeps reliable advisors from speaking, and removes discernment from elders.

20 He deprives of speech those who are trusted and takes away the discernment and discretion of the aged.

21 "He pours contempt on nobles And loosens the belt of the strong.

21 He poureth contempt upon princes, and weakeneth the strength of the mighty.

21 He pours contempt on nobles and embarrasses the mighty.

21 He pours contempt on princes and loosens the belt of the strong [disabling them, bringing low the pride of the learned].

22 "He reveals mysteries from the darkness And brings the deep darkness into light.

22 He discovereth deep things out of darkness, and bringeth out to light the shadow of death.

22 He uncovers the hidden dimensions from darkness, bringing what is in deep shadow to light.

22 He uncovers deep things out of darkness and brings into light black gloom and the shadow of death.

23 "He makes the nations great, then destroys them; He enlarges the nations, then leads them away.

23 He increaseth the nations, and destroyeth them: he enlargeth the nations, and straiteneth them again.

23 He makes nations great, and then destroys them; he enlarges nations, but then sends them away to captivity.

23 He makes nations great, and He destroys them; He enlarges nations [and then straitens and shrinks them again], and leads them [away captive].

24 "He deprives of intelligence the chiefs of the earth's people And makes them wander in a pathless waste.

24 He taketh away the heart of the chief of the people of the earth, and causeth them to wander in a wilderness where there is no way.

24 He withdraws understanding from national leaders of the world, causing them to wander through uncharted wilderness.

24 He takes away understanding from the leaders of the people of the land and of the earth, and causes them to wander in a wilderness where there is no path.

25 "They grope in darkness with no light, And He makes them stagger like a drunken man.

25 They grope in the dark without light, and he maketh them to stagger like a drunken man.

25 They grope in the dark without light; he causes them to stagger around like a drunkard."

25 They grope in the dark without light, and He makes them to stagger and wander like a drunken man.



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