Job Says His Friends’ Proverbs Are Ashes

“Behold, my eye has seen all this,

My ear has heard and understood it.

What you know I also know;

I am not inferior to you.

“But I would speak to [a]the Almighty,

And I desire to argue with God.

But you smear me with lies;

You are all worthless physicians.

Oh that you would be completely silent,

And that it would become your wisdom!

Please hear my argument,

And give your attention to the contentions of my lips.

Will you speak what is unjust for God,

And speak what is deceitful for Him?

Will you show partiality for Him?

Will you contend for God?

Will it go well when He examines you?

Or will you deceive Him as one deceives a man?

10 He will certainly punish you

If you secretly show partiality.

11 Will His [b]majesty not terrify you,

And the dread of Him fall upon you?

12 Your memorable sayings are proverbs of ashes,

Your defenses are defenses of clay.

Job Is Sure He Will Be Vindicated

13 “Be silent before me so that I may speak;

Then let come upon me what may.

14 Why should I take my flesh in my teeth,

And put my life in my [c]hands?

15 Though He slay me,

I will [d]hope in Him.

Nevertheless I will argue my ways [e]before Him.

16 This also will be my salvation,

For a godless person cannot come before His presence.

17 Listen carefully to my speech,

And let my declaration fill your ears.

18 Behold now, I have prepared my case;

I know that I will be vindicated.

19 Who could contend with me?

For then I would be silent and die.

20 “Only two things I ask that You do not do to me,

Then I will not hide from Your face:

21 Remove Your [f]hand from me,

And may the dread of You not terrify me.

22 Then call and I will answer;

Or let me speak, then reply to me.

23 How many are my guilty deeds and sins?

Make known to me my wrongdoing and my sin.

24 Why do You hide Your face

And consider me Your enemy?

25 Will You scare away a scattered leaf?

Or will You pursue the dry chaff?

26 For You write bitter things against me

And make me inherit the guilty deeds of my youth.

27 You put my feet in the stocks

And watch all my paths;

You [g]set a limit for the soles of my feet,

28 While [h]I am decaying like a rotten thing,

Like a garment that is moth-eaten.


  1. Job 13:3 Heb Shaddai
  2. Job 13:11 Lit exaltation
  3. Job 13:14 Lit palm
  4. Job 13:15 Lit wait for
  5. Job 13:15 Lit to His face
  6. Job 13:21 Lit palm
  7. Job 13:27 Lit carve for
  8. Job 13:28 Lit he is