Men move boundary stones;1 they pasture flocks they have stolen.2
They drive away the orphan's donkey and take the widow's ox in pledge.3
They thrust the needy4 from the path and force all the poor5 of the land into hiding.6
Like wild donkeys7 in the desert, the poor go about their labor8 of foraging food; the wasteland9 provides food for their children.
They gather fodder10 in the fields and glean in the vineyards11 of the wicked.12
Lacking clothes, they spend the night naked; they have nothing to cover themselves in the cold.13
They are drenched14 by mountain rains and hug15 the rocks for lack of shelter.16
The fatherless17 child is snatched18 from the breast; the infant of the poor is seized19 for a debt.20
Lacking clothes, they go about naked;21 they carry the sheaves,22 but still go hungry.
They crush olives among the terraces; they tread the winepresses,23 yet suffer thirst.24
The groans of the dying rise from the city, and the souls of the wounded cry out for help.25 But God charges no one with wrongdoing.26
"There are those who rebel against the light,27 who do not know its ways or stay in its paths.28
When daylight is gone, the murderer rises up and kills29 the poor and needy;30 in the night he steals forth like a thief.31
The eye of the adulterer32 watches for dusk;33 he thinks, 'No eye will see me,'34 and he keeps his face concealed.
In the dark, men break into houses,35 but by day they shut themselves in; they want nothing to do with the light.36
For all of them, deep darkness is their morning; they make friends with the terrors37 of darkness.38
"Yet they are foam39 on the surface of the water;40 their portion of the land is cursed,41 so that no one goes to the vineyards.42
As heat and drought snatch away the melted snow,43 so the grave44 snatches away those who have sinned.
The womb forgets them, the worm45 feasts on them;46 evil men are no longer remembered47 but are broken like a tree.48
They prey on the barren and childless woman, and to the widow show no kindness.49
But God drags away the mighty by his power;50 though they become established,51 they have no assurance of life.52
He may let them rest in a feeling of security,53 but his eyes54 are on their ways.55
For a little while they are exalted, and then they are gone;56 they are brought low and gathered up like all others;57 they are cut off like heads of grain.58
Scripture quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NIV) are from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica. All rights reserved worldwide.
(New International Version Bible Online)