For God speaks once, yes twice, though man pays no attention. Job 33:14
Job’s Final Appeal
1 “I made a covenant with my eyes,
how then should I look lustfully at a young woman?
2 For what is the portion from God above
and the heritage from the Almighty on high?
3 Is it not calamity to the unrighteous,
and disaster to the workers of iniquity?
4 Does he not see my ways
and count all my steps?
5 If I have walked with falsehood
and my foot has hurried to deceit
6 (let me be weighed in a balanced scale,
that God may know my integrity),
7 if my step has turned from the way,
if my heart walked after my eyes,
if any defilement has stuck to my hands,
8 then let me sow and let another eat.
Yes, let the produce of my field be rooted out.
9 If my heart has been enticed to a woman,
and I have laid waiting at my neighbor’s door,
10 then let my wife grind grain for another
and let others sleep with her.
11 For that would be a heinous crime.
Yes, it would be an iniquity to be punished by the judges;
12 for it is a fire that consumes to destruction
and would root out all my increase.
13 If I have despised the cause of my male servant
or of my female servant,
when they contended with me,
14 what then will I do when God rises up?
When he visits, what will I answer him?
15 Did he who made me in the womb not make him?
Did one not fashion us in the womb?
16 If I have withheld the poor from their desire,
or have caused the eyes of the widow to fail,
17 or have eaten my morsel alone,
and the fatherless has not eaten of it
18 (no, from my youth he grew up with me as with a father,
I have guided her from my mother’s womb),
19 if I have seen any perish for want of clothing,
or that the needy had no covering,
20 if his heart has not blessed me,
if he has not been warmed with my sheep’s fleece,
21 if I have lifted up my hand against the fatherless
because I saw my help in the gate,
22 then let my shoulder fall from the shoulder blade
and my arm be broken from the bone.
23 For calamity from God is a terror to me.
Because of his majesty, I can do nothing.
24 If I have made gold my hope
and have said to the fine gold, ‘You are my confidence;’
25 if I have rejoiced because my wealth was great
and because my hand had gotten much,
26 if I have seen the sun when it shone
or the moon moving in splendor
27 and my heart has been secretly enticed
and my hand threw a kiss from my mouth,
28 this also would be an iniquity to be punished by the judges,
for I should have denied the God who is above.
29 If I have rejoiced at the destruction of him who hated me
or lifted up myself when disaster found him
30 (yes, I have not allowed my mouth to sin
by asking for his life with a curse),
31 if the men of my tent have not said,
‘Who can find one who has not been filled meat from Job?’
32 (the foreigner has not camped in the street,
but I have opened my doors to the traveler),
33 if like Adam I have covered my transgressions,
by hiding my iniquity in my heart,
34 because I feared the great multitude,
and the contempt of families terrified me,
so that I remained silent and did not go out of the door—
35 oh that I had one to hear me!
Here is my signature! Let the Almighty answer me!
Let the accuser write my indictment!
36 Surely I would carry it on my shoulder,
and I would bind it to me like a crown.
37 I would declare to him the number of my steps.
Like a prince would I go near to him.
38 If my land cries out against me,
and its furrows weep together,
39 if I have eaten its fruits without money
or have caused its owners to lose their life,
40 let briers grow instead of wheat
and stinkweed instead of barley.”
Elihu Rebukes Job’s Three Friends
1 So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes. 2 Then the wrath of Elihu the son of Barachel, the Buzite, of the family of Ram, burned against Job. His wrath burned because he justified himself rather than God. 3 Also his wrath burned against his three friends, because they had found no answer, and yet had condemned Job. 4 Now Elihu had waited to speak to Job, because they were the elder to him. 5 When Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of these three men, his wrath burned.
6 Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite answered,
“I am young, and you are very old,
therefore I held back and did not dare show you my opinion.
7 I said, ‘Days should speak,
and multitude of years should teach wisdom.’
8 But there is a spirit in man,
and the Spirit of the Almighty gives them understanding.
9 It is not the great who are wise,
nor the aged who understand justice.
10 Therefore I said, ‘Listen to me.
I also will show my opinion.’
11 I waited for your words,
and I listened for your reasoning,
while you searched out what to say.
12 Yes, I gave you my full attention,
but there was no one who convinced Job
or who answered his words, among you.
13 Beware lest you say, ‘We have found wisdom.
God may refute him, not man;’
14 for he has not directed his words against me,
nor will I answer him with your speeches.
15 They are amazed. They no longer answered.
They do not have a word to say.
16 Shall I wait, because they do not speak,
because they stand still and no longer answer?
17 I also will answer my part,
and I also will show my opinion.
18 For I am full of words.
The spirit within me constrains me.
19 My breast is like wine which has no vent.
Like new wineskins, it is ready to burst.
20 I will speak, that I may be refreshed.
I will open my lips and answer.
21 Please do not let me show partiality to any man,
nor give flattering titles to anyone.
22 For I do not know how to give flattering titles,
or else my Maker would soon take me away.
Elihu Rebuke’s Job
1 “However, Job, please hear my speech,
and listen to all my words.
2 See now, I have opened my mouth.
My tongue has spoken in my mouth.
3 My words will utter the uprightness of my heart.
That which my lips know they will speak sincerely.
4 The Spirit of God has made me,
and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.
5 If you can, answer me.
Stand up and set your words in order before me.
6 I am just as you are in the sight of God.
I am also formed out of the clay.
7 My terror will not make you afraid,
nor will my pressure be heavy on you.
8 Surely you have spoken in my hearing,
I have heard the sound of your words, saying,
9 ‘I am clean, without disobedience.
I am innocent, nor is there iniquity in me.
10 He finds occasions against me.
He counts me as his enemy.
11 He puts my feet in the stocks.
He marks all my paths.’
12 I will answer you. In this you are not just,
for God is greater than man.
13 Why do you strive against him,
because he does not give account of any of his matters?
14 For God speaks once,
yes twice, though man pays no attention.
15 In a dream, in a vision of the night,
when deep sleep falls on men,
in slumbering on the bed;
16 then he opens the ears of men,
and seals their instruction,
17 that he may withdraw man from his purpose,
and hide pride from man.
18 He keeps back his soul from the pit
and his life from perishing by the sword.
19 He is chastened also with pain on his bed,
with continual strife in his bones,
20 so that his life abhors bread,
and his soul dainty food.
21 His flesh is so consumed that it cannot be seen.
His bones that were not seen stick out.
22 Yes, his soul draws near to the pit
and his life to the destroyers.
23 If there is beside him an angel,
an interpreter, one among a thousand,
to show to man what is right for him;
24 then God is gracious to him, and says,
‘Deliver him from going down to the pit.
I have found a ransom.’
25 His flesh will be fresher than a child’s.
He returns to the days of his youth.
26 He prays to God, and God delights in him,
so that he sees his face with joy.
He restores to man his righteousness.
27 He sings before men and says,
‘I have sinned and perverted that which was right,
and it did not profit me.
28 He has redeemed my soul from the pit.
My life will see the light.’
29 God does all these things,
twice, yes three times, with a man,
30 to bring back his soul from the pit,
that he may be enlightened with the light of the living.
31 Mark well, Job and listen to me.
Hold your peace, and I will speak.
32 If you have anything to say, answer me.
Speak, for I desire to justify you.
33 If not, listen to me.
Hold your peace, and I will teach you wisdom.”
2 Corinthians 3
Ministers of a New Covenant
1 Are we beginning again to commend ourselves? Or do we need, as some do, letters of commendation to you or from you? 2 You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men, 3 being revealed that you are a letter of Christ, served by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tablets of stone, but in tablets that are hearts of flesh.
4 Such confidence we have through Christ toward God, 5 not that we are sufficient of ourselves, to account anything as from ourselves; but our sufficiency is from God, 6 who also made us sufficient as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter, but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
The Glory of the New Covenant
7 But if the service of death, written and engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadfastly on the face of Moses, for the glory of his face, which was passing away, 8 will the service of the Spirit not be with much more glory? 9 For if the service of condemnation has glory, the service of righteousness exceeds much more in glory. 10 For most certainly that which has been made glorious has not been made glorious in this respect, because of the glory that surpasses. 11 For if that which passes away was with glory, much more that which remains is in glory.
12 Having therefore such a hope, we use great boldness of speech, 13 and not as Moses, who put a veil on his face, that the Israelites would not look steadfastly on the end of that which was passing away. 14 But their minds were hardened, for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains, because in Christ it passes away. 15 But to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. 16 But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But all of us, with unveiled face seeing the glory of the Lord as in a mirror, are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
Send out Your Light
1 Vindicate me, O God, and plead my cause
against an ungodly nation.
Deliver me from deceitful and wicked men.
2 For you are the God of my strength.
Why have you rejected me?
Why do I go mourning
because of the oppression of the enemy?
3 Oh, send out your light and your truth.
Let them lead me.
Let them bring me to your holy hill,
to your tabernacle.
4 Then I will go to the altar of God,
to God, my joy and my delight.
I will praise you on the harp,
O God, my God.
5 Why are you cast down, O my soul?
Why are you disquieted within me?
Hope in God!
For I shall praise him still,
who is my savior and my God.
8 He who sows wickedness reaps trouble,
and the rod of his fury will be destroyed.
9 He who has a generous eye will be blessed,
for he shares his food with the poor.