Job’s intelligence questioned

Eliphaz answered:
Will the wise respond with windy knowledge
and fill their belly with the east wind?
Will they argue with a word that has no benefit
and with unprofitable words?
You are truly making religion ineffective
and restraining meditation before God.
Your mouth multiplies your sins a thousand times;
you opt for a clever tongue.
Your mouth condemns you, not I;
your lips argue against you.
Were you born the first Adam,
brought forth before the hills?
Did you listen in God’s council;
is wisdom limited to you?
What do you know that we don’t know;
what do you understand that isn’t among us?
10 Both the graybeard and the aged are with us;
those much older than your father.
11 Are God’s comforts not enough for you,
a word spoken gently with you?
12 Why has your mind seized you,
why have your eyes flashed,
13 so that you return your breath to God
and utter such words from your mouth?
14 What are humans that they might be pure,
and those born of woman that they might be innocent?
15 If he doesn’t trust his holy ones
and the heavens aren’t pure in his eyes,
16 how much less those who are abominable and corrupt,
for they drink sin like water.

The wicked’s downfall

17 Listen to me; I will argue with you;
what I’ve seen, I will declare to you;
18 what the wise have told and have not concealed from their family,
19 to whom alone the earth was given
and no stranger passed in their midst.
20 All the days of the wicked are painful;
the number of years reserved for the hateful;
21 a sound of terror pierces[a] their ears;
when safe, raiders overtake them.
22 They can’t count on turning away from darkness;
they are destined for a sword.
23 They wander about for bread. “Where is it?”
They know that their day of darkness is fixed.
24 Adversity and stress scare them,
master them like a king ready to strike;
25 for they raise a fist against God
and try to overpower the Almighty.
26 They run toward him aggressively,
with a massive and strong shield.
27 They cover their face with grease
and make their loins gross.
28 They lived in ruined cities,
unoccupied houses that turn to rubble.
29 They won’t get rich; their wealth won’t last;
their property won’t extend over the earth.
30 They can’t turn away from darkness;
a flame will dry out their shoots,
and they will be taken away by the wind from his mouth.
31 They shouldn’t trust in what has no worth,
for their reward will be worthless.
32 Before their branch is formed,
before it is green,
33 like the vine, they will drop early grapes
and cast off their blossoms like the olive.
34 The ruthless gang is barren,
and fire consumes the tents of bribers.
35 They conceive toil and give birth to sorrow;
their belly establishes deceit.


  1. Job 15:21 Heb lacks pierces.