Job and His Friend Zophar
Job 11; Psalms 17:1-3; Proverbs 4:14-15
Then Zophar the Naamathite answered and said:
"Should not the multitude of words be answered?
And should a man full of talk be vindicated?
Should your empty talk make men hold their peace?
And when you mock, should no one rebuke you?
For you have said,
'My doctrine is pure,
And I am clean in your eyes.'
But oh, that God would speak,
And open His lips against you,
That He would show you the secrets of wisdom!
For they would double your prudence.
Know therefore that God exacts from you
Less than your iniquity deserves.
"Can you search out the deep things of God?
Can you find out the limits of the Almighty?
They are higher than heaven
-what can you do?
Deeper than Sheol-what can you know?
Their measure is longer than the earth
And broader than the sea.
"If He passes by, imprisons, and gathers to judgment,
Then who can hinder Him?
For He knows deceitful men;
He sees wickedness also.
Will He not then consider it?
For an empty-headed man will be wise,
When a wild donkey's colt is born a man.
"If you would prepare your heart,
And stretch out your hands toward Him;
If iniquity were in your hand, and you put it far away,
And would not let wickedness dwell in your tents;
Then surely you could lift up your face without spot;
Yes, you could be steadfast, and not fear;
Because you would forget your misery,
And remember it as waters that have passed away,
And your life would be brighter than noonday.
Though you were dark, you would be like the morning.
And you would be secure, because there is hope;
Yes, you would dig around you, and take your rest in safety.
You would also lie down, and no one would make you afraid;
Yes, many would court your favor.
But the eyes of the wicked will fail,
And they shall not escape,
And their hope-loss of life!"
Then Job answered and said:
"No doubt you are the people,
And wisdom will die with you!
But I have understanding as well as you;
I am not inferior to you.
Indeed, who does not know such things as these?
"I am one mocked by his friends,
Who called on God, and He answered him,
The just and blameless who is ridiculed.
A lamp is despised in the thought of one who is at ease;
It is made ready for those whose feet slip.
The tents of robbers prosper,
And those who provoke God are secure-
In what God provides by His hand.
"But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
And the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you;
And the fish of the sea will explain to you.
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
And the mouth taste its food?
Wisdom is with aged men,
And with length of days, understanding.
"Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him.
Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him.
He also shall be my salvation,
For a hypocrite could not come before Him.
Listen carefully to my speech,
And to my declaration with your ears.
See now, I have prepared my case,
I know that I shall be vindicated."
Hear a just cause, O LORD,
Attend to my cry;
Give ear to my prayer which is not from deceitful lips.
Let my vindication come from Your presence;
Let Your eyes look on the things that are upright.
You have tested my heart;
You have visited me in the night;
You have tried me and have found nothing;
I have purposed that my mouth shall not transgress.
Do not enter the path of the wicked,
And do not walk in the way of evil.
Avoid it, do not travel on it;
Turn away from it and pass on.
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