Job 32

1 So the three men stopped answering Job, because he thought he was right.
2 But Elihu the Buzite burned with anger against Job. That's because Job said he himself was right instead of God. Elihu was the son of Barakel. He was from the family of Ram.
3 Elihu's anger also burned against Job's three friends. They hadn't found any way to prove that Job was wrong. But they still said he was guilty.
4 Elihu had waited before he spoke to Job. That's because the others were older than he was.
5 But he saw that the three men didn't have anything more to say. So he burned with anger.
6 Elihu the Buzite, the son of Barakel, said, "I'm young, and you are old. So I was afraid to tell you what I know.
7 I thought, 'Those who are older should speak first. Those who have lived for many years should teach people how to be wise.'
8 But the spirit in people gives them understanding. The breath of the Mighty One gives them wisdom.
9 Older people aren't the only ones who are wise. They aren't the only ones who understand what is right.
10 "So I'm saying you should listen to me. I'll tell you what I know.
11 I waited while you men spoke. I listened to your reasoning. While you were searching for words,
12 I paid careful attention to you. But not one of you has proved that Job is wrong. None of you has answered his arguments.
13 Don't claim, 'We have enough wisdom to answer Job.' Let God, not a mere man, prove that he's wrong.
14 Job hasn't directed his words against me. I won't answer him with your arguments.
15 "Job, those men are afraid. They don't have anything else to say. They've run out of words.
16 Do I have to keep on waiting, now that they are silent? They are just standing there with nothing to say.
17 I too have something to say. I too will tell what I know.
18 I'm full of words. My spirit inside me forces me to speak.
19 Inside I'm like wine that is bottled up. I'm like new wineskins ready to burst.
20 I must speak so I can feel better. I must open my mouth and reply.
21 I'll treat everyone the same. I won't praise anyone without meaning it.
22 If I weren't honest when I praised people, my Maker would soon take me from this life.
Holy Bible, New International Reader's Version® Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by Biblica.   All rights reserved worldwide.

Job 33

1 "Job, listen now to my words. Pay attention to everything I say.
2 I'm about to open my mouth. My words are on the tip of my tongue.
3 What I say comes from an honest heart. My lips speak only what I know is true.
4 The Spirit of God has made me. The breath of the Mighty One gives me life.
5 So answer me if you can. Prepare yourself to face me.
6 In God's sight I'm just like you. I too have been made out of clay.
7 You don't have to be afraid of me. My hand won't be too heavy on you.
8 "But I heard what you said. And here are the exact words I heard.
9 You said, 'I'm pure. I haven't sinned in the ways you have charged. I'm clean. I'm not guilty of doing anything wrong.
10 But God has found fault with me. He thinks I'm his enemy.
11 He puts my feet in chains. He watches every step I take.'
12 "But I'm telling you that you aren't right when you talk like that. After all, God is greater than a mere man.
13 Why do you claim that God never answers any of our questions?
14 He speaks in one way and then another. We might not even realize it.
15 He might speak in a dream or in a vision at night. That's when people are sound asleep in their beds.
16 He might speak in their ears. His warnings might terrify them.
17 He warns men in order to turn them away from sinning. He wants to keep them from being proud.
18 He wants to stop them from going down into the grave. He doesn't want them to be killed with swords.
19 Someone might be punished by suffering in bed. The pain in his bones might never go away.
20 He might feel so bad he can't eat anything. He might even hate the finest food.
21 His body might waste away to nothing. His bones might have been hidden. But now they stick out.
22 He might approach the very edge of the grave. The messengers of death might come for him.
23 "But suppose there is an angel who will speak up for him. The angel is very special. He's one out of a thousand. He will tell that person what is right for him.
24 He'll be gracious to him. He'll say to God, 'Spare him from going down into the grave. I know a way that can set him free.'
25 Then his body is made like new again. He becomes as strong and healthy as when he was young.
26 He prays to God and finds favor with him. He sees God's face and shouts with joy. God makes him right with himself again.
27 Then the person comes to others and says, 'I sinned. I made what was wrong appear to be right. But I wasn't punished as I should have been.
28 God set me free. He kept me from going down into the grave. So I'll live to enjoy the light that leads to life.'
29 "God does all of those things to people. In fact, he does them again and again.
30 He wants to stop people from going down into the grave. Then the light that leads to life will shine on them.
31 "Pay attention, Job! Listen to me! Be quiet so I can speak.
32 If you have anything to say, answer me. Speak up. I want to help you be cleared of all charges.
33 But if you don't have anything to say, listen to me. Be quiet so I can teach you how to be wise."
Holy Bible, New International Reader's Version® Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by Biblica.   All rights reserved worldwide.

Job 34

1 Elihu continued,
2 "Hear what I'm saying, you wise men. Listen to me, you who have learned so much.
3 Our tongues tell us what tastes good and what doesn't. And our ears tell us what's true and what isn't.
4 So let's choose for ourselves what is right. Let's learn together what is good.
5 "Job says, 'I'm not guilty of doing anything wrong. But God doesn't treat me fairly.
6 Even though I'm right, he thinks I'm a liar. Even though I'm not guilty, his arrows give me wounds that can't be healed.'
7 Is there any other man like Job? He laughs at God and makes fun of him.
8 He's a companion of those who do evil. He spends his time with sinful people.
9 He asks, 'What good is it to try to please God?'
10 "So listen to me, you men who have understanding. God would never do what is evil. The Mighty One would never do what is wrong.
11 He pays a man back for what he's done. He gives him exactly what he should get.
12 It isn't possible for God to do wrong. The Mighty One would never treat people unfairly.
13 Who appointed him to rule over the earth? Who put him in charge of the whole world?
14 If he really wanted to, he could hold back his spirit and breath.
15 Then everyone would die together. They would return to the dust.
16 "Job, if you have understanding, listen to me. Pay attention to what I'm saying.
17 Can someone who hates to be fair govern? Will you bring charges against the holy and mighty One?
18 He says to kings, 'You are worthless.' He says to nobles, 'You are evil.'
19 He doesn't favor princes. He treats rich people and poor people the same. His hands created all of them.
20 They die suddenly in the middle of the night. God strikes them down, and they pass away. Those who are mighty are removed, but not by human hands.
21 "His eyes see how people live. He watches every step they take.
22 There isn't a dark place or deep shadow where those who do what is evil can hide.
23 God doesn't need to bring charges against men. He knows they are guilty. So he doesn't need to have them appear in his court to be judged.
24 He destroys the mighty without asking them questions in court. Then he sets others up in their places.
25 He knows what they do. So he crushes them during the night.
26 He punishes them for the sins they commit. He does it where everyone can see them.
27 That's because they turned away from following him. They didn't have respect for anything he does.
28 They caused poor people to cry out to him. He heard the cries of those who were in need.
29 But if he remains silent, who can judge him? If he turns his face away, who can see him? He rules over people and nations alike.
30 He keeps those who are ungodly from ruling. He keeps them from laying traps for others.
31 "Someone might say to God, 'I'm guilty of sinning, but I won't do it anymore.
32 Show me my sins that I'm not aware of. If I've done what is wrong, I won't do it again.'
33 But you refuse to turn away from your sins. So God won't treat you the way you want to be treated. You must decide, Job. I can't do it for you. So tell me what you know.
34 "You men who have understanding have spoken. You wise men who hear me have said to me,
35 'Job doesn't know what he's talking about. The things he has said don't make any sense.'
36 I wish Job would be put to the hardest test! He answered like someone who is evil.
37 To his sin he adds even more sin. He claps his hands and makes fun of us. He multiplies his words against God."
Holy Bible, New International Reader's Version® Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998 by Biblica.   All rights reserved worldwide.