“Teach me, and I will be silent;
And show me how I have erred.
“I will say to God, ‘Do not condemn me;
Let me know why You contend with me.
"How many are my iniquities and sins? Make known to me my rebellion and my sin. "Why do You hide Your face And consider me Your enemy?
"But as for me, I would seek God, And I would place my cause before God; Who does great and unsearchable things, Wonders without number. "He gives rain on the earth And sends water on the fields, read more.
So that He sets on high those who are lowly, And those who mourn are lifted to safety. "He frustrates the plotting of the shrewd, So that their hands cannot attain success. "He captures the wise by their own shrewdness, And the advice of the cunning is quickly thwarted. "By day they meet with darkness, And grope at noon as in the night. "But He saves from the sword of their mouth, And the poor from the hand of the mighty. "So the helpless has hope, And unrighteousness must shut its mouth. "Behold, how happy is the man whom God reproves, So do not despise the discipline of the Almighty. "For He inflicts pain, and gives relief; He wounds, and His hands also heal. "From six troubles He will deliver you, Even in seven evil will not touch you. "In famine He will redeem you from death, And in war from the power of the sword.
"I will say to God, 'Do not condemn me; Let me know why You contend with me.
'Is it right for You indeed to oppress, To reject the labor of Your hands, And to look favorably on the schemes of the wicked? 'Have You eyes of flesh? Or do You see as a man sees? read more.
'Are Your days as the days of a mortal, Or Your years as man's years, That You should seek for my guilt And search after my sin? 'According to Your knowledge I am indeed not guilty, Yet there is no deliverance from Your hand. 'Your hands fashioned and made me altogether, And would You destroy me? 'Remember now, that You have made me as clay; And would You turn me into dust again? 'Did You not pour me out like milk And curdle me like cheese; Clothe me with skin and flesh, And knit me together with bones and sinews? 'You have granted me life and lovingkindness; And Your care has preserved my spirit. 'Yet these things You have concealed in Your heart; I know that this is within You: If I sin, then You would take note of me, And would not acquit me of my guilt. 'If I am wicked, woe to me! And if I am righteous, I dare not lift up my head. I am sated with disgrace and conscious of my misery. 'Should my head be lifted up, You would hunt me like a lion; And again You would show Your power against me. 'You renew Your witnesses against me And increase Your anger toward me; Hardship after hardship is with me. 'Why then have You brought me out of the womb? Would that I had died and no eye had seen me! 'I should have been as though I had not been, Carried from womb to tomb.' "Would He not let my few days alone? Withdraw from me that I may have a little cheer Before I go--and I shall not return-- To the land of darkness and deep shadow,
"The tents of the destroyers prosper, And those who provoke God are secure, Whom God brings into their power. "But now ask the beasts, and let them teach you; And the birds of the heavens, and let them tell you. "Or speak to the earth, and let it teach you; And let the fish of the sea declare to you. read more.
"Who among all these does not know That the hand of the LORD has done this, In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind? "Does not the ear test words, As the palate tastes its food? "Wisdom is with aged men, With long life is understanding. "With Him are wisdom and might; To Him belong counsel and understanding. "Behold, He tears down, and it cannot be rebuilt; He imprisons a man, and there can be no release. "Behold, He restrains the waters, and they dry up; And He sends them out, and they inundate the earth. "With Him are strength and sound wisdom, The misled and the misleader belong to Him. "He makes counselors walk barefoot And makes fools of judges. "He loosens the bond of kings And binds their loins with a girdle. "He makes priests walk barefoot And overthrows the secure ones. "He deprives the trusted ones of speech And takes away the discernment of the elders. "He pours contempt on nobles And loosens the belt of the strong. "He reveals mysteries from the darkness And brings the deep darkness into light. "He makes the nations great, then destroys them; He enlarges the nations, then leads them away. "He deprives of intelligence the chiefs of the earth's people And makes them wander in a pathless waste.
"Behold, let me tell you, you are not right in this, For God is greater than man. "Why do you complain against Him That He does not give an account of all His doings? "Indeed God speaks once, Or twice, yet no one notices it. read more.
"In a dream, a vision of the night, When sound sleep falls on men, While they slumber in their beds, Then He opens the ears of men, And seals their instruction, That He may turn man aside from his conduct, And keep man from pride; He keeps back his soul from the pit, And his life from passing over into Sheol. "Man is also chastened with pain on his bed, And with unceasing complaint in his bones; So that his life loathes bread, And his soul favorite food. "His flesh wastes away from sight, And his bones which were not seen stick out. "Then his soul draws near to the pit, And his life to those who bring death. "If there is an angel as mediator for him, One out of a thousand, To remind a man what is right for him, Then let him be gracious to him, and say, 'Deliver him from going down to the pit, I have found a ransom'; Let his flesh become fresher than in youth, Let him return to the days of his youthful vigor; Then he will pray to God, and He will accept him, That he may see His face with joy, And He may restore His righteousness to man. "He will sing to men and say, 'I have sinned and perverted what is right, And it is not proper for me. 'He has redeemed my soul from going to the pit, And my life shall see the light.' "Behold, God does all these oftentimes with men, To bring back his soul from the pit, That he may be enlightened with the light of life.