Job 21
Legacy Standard Bible►► 

God Does Not Punish the Wicked

1Then Job answered and said,

2“Listen carefully to my speech,

And let this be your way of consolation.

3Bear with me that I may speak;

Then after I have spoken, you may mock.

4As for me, is my musing [†]to man?

And why should [†]I not be impatient?

5Look at me, and be appalled,

And put your hand over your mouth.

6Even when I remember, I am dismayed,

And horror seizes my flesh.

7Why do the wicked still live,

Continue on, also become very powerful?

8Their seed is established with them in their presence,

And their offspring before their eyes,

9Their houses are safe from dread,

And the rod of God is not on them.

10His ox mates and does not fail;

His cow calves and does not miscarry.

11They send forth their little ones like the flock,

And their children skip about.

12They lift up the tambourine and harp

And are glad at the sound of the pipe.

13They spend their days in prosperity,

And [†]suddenly they go down to Sheol.

14They say to God, ‘Depart from us!

We do not even desire the knowledge of Your ways.

15[†]Who is [†]the Almighty, that we should serve Him,

And what would we profit if we entreat Him?’

16Behold, their prosperity is not in their hand;

The counsel of the wicked is far from me.

17“How often is the lamp of the wicked put out,

Or does their disaster fall on them?

Does [†]God apportion destruction in His anger?

18Are they as straw before the wind,

And like chaff which the storm steals away?

19You say, ‘God stores away [†]a man’s wickedness for his sons.’

Let [†]God repay him so that he may know it.

20Let his own eyes see his decay,

And let him drink of the wrath of [†]the Almighty.

21For what desire does he have for his household [†]after him,

When the number of his months is cut off?

22Can anyone teach God knowledge,

In that He judges those on high?

23One dies in his full strength,

Being wholly carefree and at ease;

24His [†]sides are filled out with fat,

And the marrow of his bones is moist,

25But another dies with a bitter soul,

Never even eats anything good.

26Together they lie down in the dust,

And worms cover them.

27“Behold, I know your thoughts,

And the plans by which you do violence against me.

28For you say, ‘Where is the house of the nobleman,

And where is the tent, the dwelling places of the wicked?’

29Have you not asked those who pass by along the way,

And do you not recognize their [†]witness?

30That the wicked is reserved for the day of disaster;

They will be led forth at the day of fury.

31Who will declare to his face about his actions,

And who will repay him for what he has done?

32While he is led forth to the grave,

Men will keep watch over his tomb.

33The clods of the valley will [†]gently cover him;

Moreover, all men will draw up after him,

While countless ones go before him.

34How then will you vainly comfort me,

Indeed when your answers remain full of [†]falsehood?”

4 Or against
4 Lit my spirit
13 As in most versions; M.T. are shattered by Sheol
15 Lit What
15 Heb Shaddai
17 Lit He
19 Lit his
19 Lit Him
20 Heb Shaddai
21 After he dies
24 As in Syr; Heb uncertain; some Heb mss render as his pails are full of milk
29 Lit signs
33 Lit be sweet to him
34 Or faithlessness

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