Job 38
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VI. The Divine Speeches (38:1-42:6)

The Lord’s First Speech

1Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind:

2“Who is this who darkens counsel

with words without knowledge?

3Get ready for a difficult task like a man;

I will question you

and you will inform me!

God’s questions to Job

4“Where were you

when I laid the foundation of the earth?

Tell me, if you possess understanding!

5Who set its measurements – if you know –

or who stretched a measuring line across it?

6On what were its bases set,

or who laid its cornerstone –

7when the morning stars sang in chorus,

and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

8“Who shut up the sea with doors

when it burst forth, coming out of the womb,

9when I made the storm clouds its garment,

and thick darkness its swaddling band,

10when I prescribed its limits,

and set in place its bolts and doors,

11when I said, ‘To here you may come

and no farther,

here your proud waves will be confined’?

12Have you ever in your life commanded the morning,

or made the dawn know its place,

13that it might seize the corners of the earth,

and shake the wicked out of it?

14The earth takes shape like clay under a seal;

its features are dyed like a garment.

15Then from the wicked the light is withheld,

and the arm raised in violence is broken.

16Have you gone to the springs that fill the sea,

or walked about in the recesses of the deep?

17Have the gates of death been revealed to you?

Have you seen the gates of deepest darkness?

18Have you considered the vast expanses of the earth?

Tell me, if you know it all!

19“In what direction does light reside,

and darkness, where is its place,

20that you may take them to their borders

and perceive the pathways to their homes?

21You know, for you were born before them;

and the number of your days is great!

22Have you entered the storehouse of the snow,

or seen the armory of the hail,

23which I reserve for the time of trouble,

for the day of war and battle?

24In what direction is lightning dispersed,

or the east winds scattered over the earth?

25Who carves out a channel for the heavy rains,

and a path for the rumble of thunder,

26to cause it to rain on an uninhabited land,

a desert where there are no human beings,

27to satisfy a devastated and desolate land,

and to cause it to sprout with vegetation?

28Does the rain have a father,

or who has fathered the drops of the dew?

29From whose womb does the ice emerge,

and the frost from the sky, who gives birth to it,

30when the waters become hard like stone,

when the surface of the deep is frozen solid?

31Can you tie the bands of the Pleiades,

or release the cords of Orion?

32Can you lead out

the constellations in their seasons,

or guide the Bear with its cubs?

33Do you know the laws of the heavens,

or can you set up their rule over the earth?

34Can you raise your voice to the clouds

so that a flood of water covers you?

35Can you send out lightning bolts, and they go?

Will they say to you, ‘Here we are’?

36Who has put wisdom in the heart,

or has imparted understanding to the mind?

37Who by wisdom can count the clouds,

and who can tip over the water jars of heaven,

38when the dust hardens into a mass,

and the clumps of earth stick together?

39“Do you hunt prey for the lioness,

and satisfy the appetite of the lions,

40when they crouch in their dens,

when they wait in ambush in the thicket?

41Who prepares prey for the raven,

when its young cry out to God

and wander about for lack of food?

Job 37
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