|"But now, hear my speech, O Job, |
and listen to all my words.
|Behold, I open my mouth; |
the tongue in my mouth speaks.
|My words declare the uprightness of my heart, |
and what my lips know they speak sincerely.
|The spirit of God has made me, |
and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.
|Answer me, if you can; |
set your words in order before me; take your stand.
|Behold, I am toward God as you are; |
I too was formed from a piece of clay.
|Behold, no fear of me need terrify you; |
my pressure will not be heavy upon you.
|"Surely, you have spoken in my hearing, |
and I have heard the sound of your words.
|You say, 'I am clean, without transgression; |
I am pure, and there is no iniquity in me.
|Behold, he finds occasions against me, |
he counts me as his enemy;
|he puts my feet in the stocks, |
and watches all my paths.'
|"Behold, in this you are not right. |
I will answer you. God is greater than man.
|Why do you contend against him, |
saying, 'He will answer none of my words'?
|For God speaks in one way, |
and in two, though man does not perceive it.
|In a dream, in a vision of the night, |
when deep sleep falls upon men,
while they slumber on their beds,
|then he opens the ears of men, |
and terrifies them with warnings,
|that he may turn man aside from his deed, |
and cut off pride from man;
|he keeps back his soul from the Pit, |
his life from perishing by the sword.
|"Man is also chastened with pain upon his bed, |
and with continual strife in his bones;
|so that his life loathes bread, |
and his appetite dainty food.
|His flesh is so wasted away that it cannot be seen; |
and his bones which were not seen stick out.
|His soul draws near the Pit, |
and his life to those who bring death.
|If there be for him an angel, |
a mediator, one of the thousand,
to declare to man what is right for him;
|and he is gracious to him, and says, |
'Deliver him from going down into the Pit,
I have found a ransom;
|let his flesh become fresh with youth; |
let him return to the days of his youthful vigor';
|then man prays to God, and he accepts him, |
he comes into his presence with joy.
He recounts to men his salvation,
|and he sings before men, and says: |
'I sinned and perverted what was right,
and it was not requited to me.
|He has redeemed my soul from going down into the Pit, |
and my life shall see the light.'
|"Behold, God does all these things, twice, three times, with a man,|
|to bring back his soul from the Pit, |
that he may see the light of life.
|Give heed, O Job, listen to me; |
be silent, and I will speak.
|If you have anything to say, answer me; |
speak, for I desire to justify you.
|If not, listen to me; |
be silent, and I will teach you wisdom."
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