2 "Truly, you are the people and wisdom will die with you! 3 Like you, I also have understanding. I'm not inferior to you; who doesn't know things like this?"
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. 5 The carefree are thinking, "I have contempt for misfortune,' Those who are about to stumble deserve it. 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.
7 "Ask the wild animals, and they'll teach you; the birds of the sky will tell you. 8 Or ask the green plants of the earth and they'll teach you; let the fish in the sea tell you. 9 Who among all of these doesn't know that the LORD's hand made them, 10 and that the life of every living thing rests in his control, along with the breath of every living human being? 11 The ear scrutinizes speech just as the palate tastes food." 12 "Wisdom may be found in the company of the aged. Understanding comes with longevity.
13 With God is wisdom and strength; counsel and understanding belongs to him. 14 When he tears down, nobody rebuilds; when he incarcerates, nobody escapes. 15 When he withholds water, rivers dry up; when he lets them loose, they'll flood the land. 16 "With God are strength and sound wisdom; both the deceived and those who deceive are responsible to him. 17 He leads counselors away naked; he turns judges into fools. 18 He strips away the authority of kings to punish and puts them in prison clothes instead. 19 He leads away the priests naked and overthrows the ruling class. 20 He keeps reliable advisors from speaking, and removes discernment from elders. 21 He pours contempt on nobles and embarrasses the mighty. 22 He uncovers the hidden dimensions from darkness, bringing what is in deep shadow to light. 23 He makes nations great, and then destroys them; he enlarges nations, but then sends them away to captivity. 24 He withdraws understanding from national leaders of the world, causing them to wander through uncharted wilderness. 25 They grope in the dark without light; he causes them to stagger around like a drunkard."