Job 4-7; Psalm 99; Rev 11
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The following text is from the English Standard Version.
Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered and said:
‘If one ventures a word with you, will you be impatient? Yet who can keep from speaking?
Behold, you have instructed many, and you have strengthened the weak hands.
Your words have upheld him who was stumbling, and you have made firm the feeble knees.
But now it has come to you, and you are impatient; it touches you, and you are dismayed.
Is not your fear of God your confidence, and the integrity of your ways your hope?
‘Remember: who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off?
As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same.
By the breath of God they perish, and by the blast of his anger they are consumed.
The roar of the lion, the voice of the fierce lion, the teeth of the young lions are broken.
The strong lion perishes for lack of prey, and the cubs of the lioness are scattered.
‘Now a word was brought to me stealthily; my ear received the whisper of it.
Amid thoughts from visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on men,
dread came upon me, and trembling, which made all my bones shake.
A spirit glided past my face; the hair of my flesh stood up.
It stood still, but I could not discern its appearance. A form was before my eyes; there was silence, then I heard a voice:
Can mortal man be in the right before God? Can a man be pure before his Maker?
Even in his servants he puts no trust, and his angels he charges with error;
how much more those who dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, who are crushed like the moth.
Between morning and evening they are beaten to pieces; they perish forever without anyone regarding it.
Is not their tent-cord plucked up within them, do they not die, and that without wisdom?’
‘Call now; is there anyone who will answer you? To which of the holy ones will you turn?
Surely vexation kills the fool, and jealousy slays the simple.
I have seen the fool taking root, but suddenly I cursed his dwelling.
His children are far from safety; they are crushed in the gate, and there is no one to deliver them.
The hungry eat his harvest, and he takes it even out of thorns, and the thirsty pant after his wealth.
For affliction does not come from the dust, nor does trouble sprout from the ground,
but man is born to trouble as the sparks fly upward.
‘As for me, I would seek God, and to God would I commit my cause,
who does great things and unsearchable, marvelous things without number:
he gives rain on the earth and sends waters on the fields;
he sets on high those who are lowly, and those who mourn are lifted to safety.
He frustrates the devices of the crafty, so that their hands achieve no success.
He catches the wise in their own craftiness, and the schemes of the wily are brought to a quick end.
They meet with darkness in the daytime and grope at noonday as in the night.
But he saves the needy from the sword of their mouth and from the hand of the mighty.
So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts her mouth.
‘Behold, blessed is the one whom God reproves; therefore despise not the discipline of the Almighty.
For he wounds, but he binds up; he shatters, but his hands heal.
He will deliver you from six troubles; in seven no evil shall touch you.
In famine he will redeem you from death, and in war from the power of the sword.
You shall be hidden from the lash of the tongue, and shall not fear destruction when it comes.
At destruction and famine you shall laugh, and shall not fear the beasts of the earth.
For you shall be in league with the stones of the field, and the beasts of the field shall be at peace with you.
You shall know that your tent is at peace, and you shall inspect your fold and miss nothing.
You shall know also that your offspring shall be many, and your descendants as the grass of the earth.
You shall come to your grave in ripe old age, like a sheaf gathered up in its season.
Behold, this we have searched out; it is true. Hear, and know it for your good.”
Then Job answered and said:
‘Oh that my vexation were weighed, and all my calamity laid in the balances!
For then it would be heavier than the sand of the sea; therefore my words have been rash.
For the arrows of the Almighty are in me; my spirit drinks their poison; the terrors of God are arrayed against me.
Does the wild donkey bray when he has grass, or the ox low over his fodder?
Can that which is tasteless be eaten without salt, or is there any taste in the juice of the mallow?
My appetite refuses to touch them; they are as food that is loathsome to me.
‘Oh that I might have my request, and that God would fulfill my hope,
that it would please God to crush me, that he would let loose his hand and cut me off!
This would be my comfort; I would even exult in pain unsparing, for I have not denied the words of the Holy One.
What is my strength, that I should wait? And what is my end, that I should be patient?
Is my strength the strength of stones, or is my flesh bronze?
Have I any help in me, when resource is driven from me?
‘He who withholds kindness from a friend forsakes the fear of the Almighty.
My brothers are treacherous as a torrent-bed, as torrential streams that pass away,
which are dark with ice, and where the snow hides itself.
When they melt, they disappear; when it is hot, they vanish from their place.
The caravans turn aside from their course; they go up into the waste and perish.
The caravans of Tema look, the travelers of Sheba hope.
They are ashamed because they were confident; they come there and are disappointed.
For you have now become nothing; you see my calamity and are afraid.
Have I said, ‘Make me a gift’? Or, ‘From your wealth offer a bribe for me’?
Or, ‘Deliver me from the adversary’s hand’? Or, ‘Redeem me from the hand of the ruthless’?
‘Teach me, and I will be silent; make me understand how I have gone astray.
How forceful are upright words! But what does reproof from you reprove?
Do you think that you can reprove words, when the speech of a despairing man is wind?
You would even cast lots over the fatherless, and bargain over your friend.
‘But now, be pleased to look at me, for I will not lie to your face.
Please turn; let no injustice be done. Turn now; my vindication is at stake.
Is there any injustice on my tongue? Cannot my palate discern the cause of calamity?
‘Has not man a hard service on earth, and are not his days like the days of a hired hand?
Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like a hired hand who looks for his wages,
so I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me.
When I lie down I say, ‘When shall I arise?’ But the night is long, and I am full of tossing till the dawn.
My flesh is clothed with worms and dirt; my skin hardens, then breaks out afresh.
My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle and come to their end without hope.
‘Remember that my life is a breath; my eye will never again see good.
The eye of him who sees me will behold me no more; while your eyes are on me, I shall be gone.
As the cloud fades and vanishes, so he who goes down to Sheol does not come up;
he returns no more to his house, nor does his place know him anymore.
‘Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.
Am I the sea, or a sea monster, that you set a guard over me?
When I say, ‘My bed will comfort me, my couch will ease my complaint,’
then you scare me with dreams and terrify me with visions,
so that I would choose strangling and death rather than my bones.
I loathe my life; I would not live forever. Leave me alone, for my days are a breath.
What is man, that you make so much of him, and that you set your heart on him,
visit him every morning and test him every moment?
How long will you not look away from me, nor leave me alone till I swallow my spit?
If I sin, what do I do to you, you watcher of mankind? Why have you made me your mark? Why have I become a burden to you?
Why do you not pardon my transgression and take away my iniquity? For now I shall lie in the earth; you will seek me, but I shall not be.”
The LORD reigns; let the peoples tremble! He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
The LORD is great in Zion; he is exalted over all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name! Holy is he!
The King in his might loves justice. You have established equity; you have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.
Exalt the LORD our God; worship at his footstool! Holy is he!
Moses and Aaron were among his priests, Samuel also was among those who called upon his name. They called to the LORD, and he answered them.
In the pillar of the cloud he spoke to them; they kept his testimonies and the statute that he gave them.
O LORD our God, you answered them; you were a forgiving God to them, but an avenger of their wrongdoings.
Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy mountain; for the LORD our God is holy!
Then I was given a measuring rod like a staff, and I was told, ”Rise and measure the temple of God and the altar and those who worship there,
but do not measure the court outside the temple; leave that out, for it is given over to the nations, and they will trample the holy city for forty-two months.
And I will grant authority to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.”
These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth.
And if anyone would harm them, fire pours from their mouth and consumes their foes. If anyone would harm them, this is how he is doomed to be killed.
They have the power to shut the sky, that no rain may fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have power over the waters to turn them into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague, as often as they desire.
And when they have finished their testimony, the beast that rises from the bottomless pit will make war on them and conquer them and kill them,
and their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city that symbolically is called Sodom and Egypt, where their Lord was crucified.
For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb,
and those who dwell on the earth will rejoice over them and make merry and exchange presents, because these two prophets had been a torment to those who dwell on the earth.
But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them.
Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, ”Come up here!” And they went up to heaven in a cloud, and their enemies watched them.
And at that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven.
The second woe has passed; behold, the third woe is soon to come.
Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, ”The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.”
And the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God,
saying, ”We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, who is and who was, for you have taken your great power and begun to reign.
The nations raged, but your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear your name, both small and great, and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.”
Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail.