God Speaks to Job
Then the LORD spoke to Job from a whirlwind and said,
Who is this ignorant person
saying these foolish things?*
Brace yourself and get ready to answer the questions I will ask you.
Where were you when I made the earth?
If you are so smart, answer me.
And who decided how big the earth should be?
Who measured it with a measuring line?
What is the earth resting on?
Who put the first stone in its place
when the morning stars sang together
and the angels shouted with joy?
“Who closed the flood gates
as the sea gushed from the womb?
Who covered it with clouds
and wrapped it in darkness?
10 I set the limits for the sea
and put it behind locked gates.
11 I said to the sea, ‘You can come this far, but no farther.
This is where your proud waves will stop.’
12 Did you ever in your life command the morning to begin
or the day to dawn?
13 Did you ever tell the morning light to grab the earth
and shake those who are evil out of their hiding places?
14 The morning light makes the hills
and valleys easy to see.
When the daylight comes to the earth,
the shapes of these places stand out like the folds of a coat.
They take shape like soft clay
that is pressed with a stamp.
15 Evil people don’t like the daylight.
When it shines bright, it keeps them from doing the bad things they do.
16 Have you ever gone to the deepest parts of the sea?
Have you ever walked on the ocean bottom?
17 Has anyone shown you the gates to the world of the dead?
Have you ever seen those gates that lead to the dark place of death?
18 Do you really understand how big the earth is?
Tell me, if you know all this.
19 Where does light come from?
Where does darkness come from?
20 Can you take them back to where they belong?
Do you know how to get there?
21 Surely you know these things, since you are so old and wise.
You were alive when I made them, weren’t you?§
22 Have you ever gone into the storerooms
where I keep the snow and the hail?
23 I save them there for times of trouble,
for the times of war and battle.
24 Have you ever gone to the place where the sun comes up,
where it makes the east wind blow all over the earth?*
25 Who dug ditches in the sky for the heavy rain?
Who made a path for the thunderstorm?
26 Who makes it rain even in desert places
where no one lives?
27 The rain gives that dry empty land all the water it needs,
and grass begins to grow.
28 Does the rain have a father?
Who produces the drops of dew?
29 Does ice have a mother?
Who gives birth to the frost?
30 That’s when the water freezes as hard as a rock.
Even the deep sea freezes over!
31 “Can you tie up the Pleiades?
Can you unfasten the belt of Orion?
32 Can you bring out the other constellations§ at the right times?
Can you lead out the Bear* with its cubs?
33 Do you know the laws that control the sky?
Can you put each star in its place above the earth?
34 “Can you shout at the clouds
and command them to cover you with rain?
35 Can you give a command to the lightning?
Will it come to you and say, ‘Here we are; what do you want, sir?’
Will it go wherever you want it to go?
36 Who makes people wise?
Who puts wisdom deep inside them?
37 Who is wise enough to count the clouds
and tip them over to pour out their rain?
38 The rain makes the dust become mud,
and the clumps of dirt stick together.
39 Do you find food for the lions?
Do you feed their hungry babies?
40 No, they hide in their caves
or wait in the grass, ready to attack their prey.
41 Who feeds the ravens when their babies cry out to God
and wander around without food?
* 38:2 Or “Who is this person darkening advice with ignorant words.” 38:3 brace yourself Literally, “gird yourself like a man.” This means “get ready for battle.” 38:7 angels Literally, “sons of God.” § 38:21 This is sarcasm—saying something in a way that everyone understands it is not really true. * 38:24 Or “Where is the place that the fog disperses and the place where the east wind scatters it all over the earth?” 38:31 Pleiades A famous group of stars. It is often called, “The Seven Sisters.” 38:31 Orion A famous group of stars. It looks like a hunter or powerful soldier. § 38:32 constellations Groups of stars in the night sky. Here, this probably means the twelve constellations of the Zodiac. They seem to pass through the sky so that a new constellation is in a certain part of the sky each month. * 38:32 Bear A famous group of stars. It looks like a bear. It is often called, “the Big Dipper.” Near it is a smaller constellation that looks like a small bear. It is often called, “the Little Dipper.” 38:33 Can you … earth Or “Can you put it in charge over the earth?”