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23 The reply of Job:

“My complaint today is still a bitter one, and my punishment far more severe than my fault deserves. Oh, that I knew where to find God—that I could go to his throne and talk with him there. 4-5 I would tell him all about my side of this argument, and listen to his reply, and understand what he wants. Would he merewer me with his greatness? No, he would listen with sympathy. Fair and honest men could reason with him and be acquitted by my Judge.

“But I search in vain. I seek him here, I seek him there and cannot find him. I seek him in his workshop in the north but cannot find him there; nor can I find him in the south; there, too, he hides himself. 10 But he knows every detail of what is happening to me; and when he has examined me, he will pronounce me completely innocent—as pure as solid gold!

11 “I have stayed in God’s paths, following his steps. I have not turned aside. 12 I have not refused his commandments but have enjoyed them more than my daily food. 13 Nevertheless, his mind concerning me remains unchanged, and who can turn him from his purposes? Whatever he wants to do, he does. 14 So he will do to me all he has planned, and there is more ahead.[a]

15 “No wonder I am so terrified in his presence. When I think of it, terror grips me. 16-17 God has given me a fainting heart; he, the Almighty, has terrified me with darkness all around me, thick, impenetrable darkness everywhere.


  1. Job 23:14 and there is more ahead, literally, “and many such things are with him.”
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


23 Then Job replied:

“Even today my complaint(A) is bitter;(B)
    his hand[a] is heavy in spite of[b] my groaning.(C)
If only I knew where to find him;
    if only I could go to his dwelling!(D)
I would state my case(E) before him
    and fill my mouth with arguments.(F)
I would find out what he would answer me,(G)
    and consider what he would say to me.
Would he vigorously oppose me?(H)
    No, he would not press charges against me.(I)
There the upright(J) can establish their innocence before him,(K)
    and there I would be delivered forever from my judge.(L)

“But if I go to the east, he is not there;
    if I go to the west, I do not find him.
When he is at work in the north, I do not see him;
    when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him.(M)
10 But he knows the way that I take;(N)
    when he has tested me,(O) I will come forth as gold.(P)
11 My feet have closely followed his steps;(Q)
    I have kept to his way without turning aside.(R)
12 I have not departed from the commands of his lips;(S)
    I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.(T)

13 “But he stands alone, and who can oppose him?(U)
    He does whatever he pleases.(V)
14 He carries out his decree against me,
    and many such plans he still has in store.(W)
15 That is why I am terrified before him;(X)
    when I think of all this, I fear him.(Y)
16 God has made my heart faint;(Z)
    the Almighty(AA) has terrified me.(AB)
17 Yet I am not silenced by the darkness,(AC)
    by the thick darkness that covers my face.


  1. Job 23:2 Septuagint and Syriac; Hebrew / the hand on me
  2. Job 23:2 Or heavy on me in
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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