The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Book of Job
Then answered Eliphaz the Themanite:
This is not a wise man’s way, to answer with windy sophistries, as if thou hadst the sirocco in thy blood,
ill matched for the contest, prating to thy hurt.
Worse, if thou hadst thy way, all reverence should be abolished, all devotion at an end.
Thy tongue takes its instructions from a sinful heart; this is rebel speech.
No need for me to prove thee a guilty man, thy words prove it; thy own lips arraign thee.
Tell me, was thine some primeval birth; wast thou made before the hills?
Hast thou overheard the secrets of God’s council-chamber, that thou thinkest him no match for thee in wisdom?
What knowledge hast thou but we share it, what discernment greater than ours?
We too have ancients among us, grey-headed men that have seen more days than any father of thine.
It should be no great matter for God to comfort thee, if thy untimely speech did not forbid it;✻
what mean these transports, why does that eye roll so wildly?
What pride is this that would cross God himself, moving thee to rash utterance?
It is not in man to live a life all blameless; never son of woman yet found acquittal.
Fickle natures God finds among his very angels; the purity of heaven itself does not suffice him;
what of man, the abominable, the defiled, athirst ever for wrong-doing?
Listen, while I tell thee my mind; thou shalt hear what my own eyes have witnessed;
thou shalt hear what wise men have said, making known the tradition of their fathers,
that dwelt ever in their own land, and held no commerce with strangers.
Proudly though he carry himself all his days, the godless man is on the rack; how long will his tyrannous reign last?
All the while, terror whispers in his ear; danger there is none, but he sees plots everywhere.
Treads he by dark ways, he never hopes to see light again, swords here, swords there to threaten him;
ventures he out in search of food,✻ he doubts not his last hour is at hand;
dangers threaten him, difficulties hedge him round, as though he were a king making ready for battle.
And all because he chose God for his enemy, matched himself against omnipotence;
head high in air he made the onslaught, proud of his strong sinews,
like a bull with hanging dewlap and well-covered flanks.✻
Now he is like some plant that grows✻ amid deserted streets, upon houses uninhabited that lie in ruins;
no root shall he strike into the earth, of true wealth or abiding prosperity;
never leave the shadows, but he is withered up by the heat or carried away by the blast.
Let no fond hope delude him that he can buy off his doom;
fall he must before his time; withered every branch,
despoiled the vine with clusters yet unripe, shed the olive’s flower.
Barren, barren the schemer’s plot; the house of the bribe-taker shall burn about his ears.
Vainly engendered, borne in the womb, brought forth, their load of misery and infamy and shame.
The Holy Bible