Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered:
"Should the wise answer with windy knowledge, and fill themselves with the east wind?
Should they argue in unprofitable talk, or in words with which they can do no good?
But you are doing away with the fear of God, and hindering meditation before God.
For your iniquity teaches your mouth, and you choose the tongue of the crafty.
Your own mouth condemns you, and not I; your own lips testify against you.
"Are you the firstborn of the human race? Were you brought forth before the hills?
Have you listened in the council of God? And do you limit wisdom to yourself?
What do you know that we do not know? What do you understand that is not clear to us?
The gray-haired and the aged are on our side, those older than your father.
Are the consolations of God too small for you, or the word that deals gently with you?
Why does your heart carry you away, and why do your eyes flash, a13
so that you turn your spirit against God, and let such words go out of your mouth?
What are mortals, that they can be clean? Or those born of woman, that they can be righteous?
God puts no trust even in his holy ones, and the heavens are not clean in his sight;
how much less one who is abominable and corrupt, one who drinks iniquity like water!
"I will show you; listen to me; what I have seen I will declare—
what sages have told, and their ancestors have not hidden,
to whom alone the land was given, and no stranger passed among them.
The wicked writhe in pain all their days, through all the years that are laid up for the ruthless.
Terrifying sounds are in their ears; in prosperity the destroyer will come upon them.
They despair of returning from darkness, and they are destined for the sword.
They wander abroad for bread, saying, "Where is it?' They know that a day of darkness is ready at hand;
distress and anguish terrify them; they prevail against them, like a king prepared for battle.
Because they stretched out their hands against God, and bid defiance to the Almighty, b26
running stubbornly against him with a thick-bossed shield;
because they have covered their faces with their fat, and gathered fat upon their loins,
they will live in desolate cities, in houses that no one should inhabit, houses destined to become heaps of ruins;
they will not be rich, and their wealth will not endure, nor will they strike root in the earth; c30
they will not escape from darkness; the flame will dry up their shoots, and their blossom d will be swept away e by the wind.
Let them not trust in emptiness, deceiving themselves; for emptiness will be their recompense.
It will be paid in full before their time, and their branch will not be green.
They will shake off their unripe grape, like the vine, and cast off their blossoms, like the olive tree.
For the company of the godless is barren, and fire consumes the tents of bribery.
They conceive mischief and bring forth evil and their heart prepares deceit."
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. (New Revised Standard Bible Version Online)