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Job 9 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Job’s Reply to Bildad

Then Job answered:

“Truly, I know that this is so.
But how can a human be just before God?
If someone wishes to contend with him,
he cannot answer him one time in a thousand.
He is wise in heart and mighty in strength—
who has resisted him and remained safe?
He who removes mountains suddenly,
who overturns them in his anger;
he who shakes the earth out of its place
so that its pillars tremble;
he who commands the sun and it does not shine
and seals up the stars;
he alone spreads out the heavens,
and treads on the waves of the sea;
he makes the Bear, Orion, and the Pleiades,
and the constellations of the southern sky;
10 he does great and unsearchable things,
and wonderful things without number.
11 If he passes by me, I cannot see him,
if he goes by, I cannot perceive him.
12 If he snatches away, who can turn him back?
Who dares to say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13 God does not restrain his anger;
under him the helpers of Rahab lie crushed.

The Impossibility of Facing God in Court

14 “How much less, then, can I answer him
and choose my words to argue with him!
15 Although I am innocent,
I could not answer him;
I could only plead with my judge for mercy.
16 If I summoned him, and he answered me,
I would not believe
that he would be listening to my voice—
17 he who crushes me with a tempest,
and multiplies my wounds for no reason.
18 He does not allow me to recover my breath,
for he fills me with bitterness.
19 If it is a matter of strength,
most certainly he is the strong one!
And if it is a matter of justice,
he will say, ‘Who will summon me?’
20 Although I am innocent,
my mouth would condemn me;
although I am blameless,
it would declare me perverse.
21 I am blameless. I do not know myself.
I despise my life.

Accusation of God’s Justice

22 “It is all one! That is why I say,
‘He destroys the blameless and the guilty.’
23 If a scourge brings sudden death,
he mocks at the despair of the innocent.
24 If a land has been given
into the hand of a wicked man,
he covers the faces of its judges;
if it is not he, then who is it?

Renewed Complaint

25 “My days are swifter than a runner,
they speed by without seeing happiness.
26 They glide by like reed boats,
like an eagle that swoops down on its prey.
27 If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
I will change my expression and be cheerful,’
28 I dread all my sufferings,
for I know that you do not hold me blameless.
29 If I am guilty,
why then weary myself in vain?
30 If I wash myself with snow water,
and make my hands clean with lye,
31 then you plunge me into a slimy pit
and my own clothes abhor me.
32 For he is not a human being like I am,
that I might answer him,
that we might come together in judgment.
33 Nor is there an arbiter between us,
who might lay his hand on us both,
34 who would take his rod away from me
so that his terror would not make me afraid.
35 Then would I speak and not fear him,
but it is not so with me.

New English Translation (NET)

NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://netbible.com All rights reserved.

Job 9 New International Version (NIV)

Job

Then Job replied:

“Indeed, I know that this is true.
    But how can mere mortals prove their innocence before God?
Though they wished to dispute with him,
    they could not answer him one time out of a thousand.
His wisdom is profound, his power is vast.
    Who has resisted him and come out unscathed?
He moves mountains without their knowing it
    and overturns them in his anger.
He shakes the earth from its place
    and makes its pillars tremble.
He speaks to the sun and it does not shine;
    he seals off the light of the stars.
He alone stretches out the heavens
    and treads on the waves of the sea.
He is the Maker of the Bear[a] and Orion,
    the Pleiades and the constellations of the south.
10 He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed,
    miracles that cannot be counted.
11 When he passes me, I cannot see him;
    when he goes by, I cannot perceive him.
12 If he snatches away, who can stop him?
    Who can say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
13 God does not restrain his anger;
    even the cohorts of Rahab cowered at his feet.

14 “How then can I dispute with him?
    How can I find words to argue with him?
15 Though I were innocent, I could not answer him;
    I could only plead with my Judge for mercy.
16 Even if I summoned him and he responded,
    I do not believe he would give me a hearing.
17 He would crush me with a storm
    and multiply my wounds for no reason.
18 He would not let me catch my breath
    but would overwhelm me with misery.
19 If it is a matter of strength, he is mighty!
    And if it is a matter of justice, who can challenge him[b]?
20 Even if I were innocent, my mouth would condemn me;
    if I were blameless, it would pronounce me guilty.

21 “Although I am blameless,
    I have no concern for myself;
    I despise my own life.
22 It is all the same; that is why I say,
    ‘He destroys both the blameless and the wicked.’
23 When a scourge brings sudden death,
    he mocks the despair of the innocent.
24 When a land falls into the hands of the wicked,
    he blindfolds its judges.
    If it is not he, then who is it?

25 “My days are swifter than a runner;
    they fly away without a glimpse of joy.
26 They skim past like boats of papyrus,
    like eagles swooping down on their prey.
27 If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
    I will change my expression, and smile,’
28 I still dread all my sufferings,
    for I know you will not hold me innocent.
29 Since I am already found guilty,
    why should I struggle in vain?
30 Even if I washed myself with soap
    and my hands with cleansing powder,
31 you would plunge me into a slime pit
    so that even my clothes would detest me.

32 “He is not a mere mortal like me that I might answer him,
    that we might confront each other in court.
33 If only there were someone to mediate between us,
    someone to bring us together,
34 someone to remove God’s rod from me,
    so that his terror would frighten me no more.
35 Then I would speak up without fear of him,
    but as it now stands with me, I cannot.

Footnotes:

  1. Job 9:9 Or of Leo
  2. Job 9:19 See Septuagint; Hebrew me.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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