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Job’s Reply to Bildad

9:1 Then Job answered:
9:2 “Truly, I know that this is so.
But how can a human be just before God?
9:3 If someone wishes to contend with him,
he cannot answer him one time in a thousand.
9:4 He is wise in heart and mighty in strength –
who has resisted him and remained safe?
9:5 He who removes mountains suddenly,
who overturns them in his anger;
9:6 he who shakes the earth out of its place
so that its pillars tremble;
9:7 he who commands the sun and it does not shine
and seals up the stars;
9:8 he alone spreads out the heavens,
and treads on the waves of the sea;
9:9 he makes the Bear, Orion, and the Pleiades,
and the constellations of the southern sky;
9:10 he does great and unsearchable things,
and wonderful things without number.
9:11 If he passes by me, I cannot see him,
if he goes by, I cannot perceive him.
9:12 If he snatches away, who can turn him back?
Who dares to say to him, ‘What are you doing?’
9:13 God does not restrain his anger;
under him the helpers of Rahab lie crushed.
The Impossibility of Facing God in Court
9:14 “How much less, then, can I
answer him
and choose my words to argue with him!
9:15 Although I am innocent,
I could not answer him;
I could only plead with my judge for mercy.
9:16 If I summoned him, and he answered me,
I would not believe
that he would be listening to my voice –
9:17 he who crushes me with a tempest,
and multiplies my wounds for no reason.
9:18 He does not allow me to recover my breath,
for he fills me with bitterness.
9:19 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?’
9:20 Although I am innocent,
my mouth would condemn me;
although I am blameless,
it would declare me perverse.
9:21 I am blameless. I do not know myself.
I despise my life.
Accusation of God’s Justice
9:22 “It is all one! That is why I say,
‘He destroys the blameless and the guilty.’
9:23 If a scourge brings sudden death,
he mocks at the despair of the innocent.
9:24 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
9:25 “My days are swifter than a runner,
they speed by without seeing happiness.
9:26 They glide by like reed boats,
like an eagle that swoops down on its prey.
9:27 If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
I will change my expression and be cheerful,’
9:28 I dread all my sufferings,
for I know that you do not hold me blameless.
9:29 If I am guilty,
why then weary myself in vain?
9:30 If I wash myself with snow water,
and make my hands clean with lye,
9:31 then you plunge me into a slimy pit
and my own clothes abhor me.
9:32 For he is not a human being like I am,
that I might answer him,
that we might come together in judgment.
9:33 Nor is there an arbiter between us,
who might lay his hand on us both,
9:34 who would take his rod away from me
so that his terror would not make me afraid.
9:35 Then would I speak and not fear him,
but it is not so with me.

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