The Bible – Old Testament
Then Elihu continued and said:
Hear, O wise men, my discourse, and you that have knowledge, hear me!
For the ear tests words, as the taste does food.
Let us discern for ourselves what is right; let us learn between us what is good.
For Job has said, “I am innocent, but God has taken what is my due.
Notwithstanding my right I am set at nought; in my wound the arrow rankles, sinless though I am.”
What man is like Job? He drinks in blasphemies like water,
Keeps company with evildoers and goes along with wicked men,
When he says, “It profits a man nought that he is pleasing to God.”
Therefore, men of understanding, hearken to me: far be it from God to do wickedness; far from the Almighty to do wrong!
Rather, he requites men for their conduct, and brings home to a man his way of life.
Surely, God cannot act wickedly, the Almighty cannot violate justice.
Who gave him government over the earth, or who else set all the land in its place?
If he were to take back his spirit to himself, withdraw to himself his breath,
All flesh would perish together, and man would return to the dust.
Now, do you, O Job, hear this! Hearken to the words I speak!
Can an enemy of justice indeed be in control, or will you condemn the supreme Just One,
Who says to a king, “You are worthless!” and to nobles, “You are wicked!”
Who neither favors the person of princes, nor respects the rich more than the poor? For they are all the work of his hands;
in a moment they die, even at midnight. He brings on nobles, and takes them away, removing the powerful without lifting a hand;
For his eyes are upon the ways of man, and he beholds all his steps.
There is no darkness so dense that evildoers can hide in it.
Therefore he discerns their works; he turns at night and crushes them.
For he forewarns no man of his time to come before God in judgment.
Without a trial he breaks the mighty, and sets others in their stead,
Because they turned away from him and heeded none of his ways,
But caused the cries of the poor to reach him, so that he heard the plea of the afflicted.
1 If he remains tranquil, who then can condemn? If he hides his face, who then can behold him?
When anyone says to God, “I was misguided; I will offend no more.
Teach me wherein I have sinned; if I have done wrong, I will do so no more,”
Would you then say that God must punish, since you reject what he is doing? It is you who must choose, not I; speak, therefore, what you know.
Men of understanding will say to me, every wise man who hears my views:
“Job speaks without intelligence, and his words are without sense.”
Let Job be tried to the limit, since his answers are those of the impious;
For he is adding rebellion to his sin by brushing off our arguments and addressing many words to God.
1 [26, 29-30] The extant Hebrew text of these verses contains several added phrases which either represent duplication or are very obscure.