Add parallel Print Page Options

28 Surely there is a mine for silver, and a place for gold where they refine it.

Iron is taken out of the earth, and copper is smelted from the stone ore.

Man sets an end to darkness, and he searches out the farthest bounds for the ore buried in gloom and deep darkness.

Men break open shafts away from where people sojourn, in places forgotten by [human] foot; and [descend into them], hanging afar from men, they swing or flit to and fro.

As for the earth, out of it comes bread, but underneath [its surface, down deep in the mine] there is [a]blasting, turning it up as by fire.

Its stones are the bed of sapphires; it holds dust of gold [which he wins].

That path no bird of prey knows, and the falcon’s eye has not seen it.

The proud beasts [and their young] have not trodden it, nor has the fierce lion passed over it.

Man puts forth his hand upon the flinty rock; he overturns the mountains by the roots.

10 He cuts out channels and passages among the rocks; and his eye sees every precious thing.

11 [Man] binds the streams so that they do not trickle [into the mine], and the thing that is hidden he brings forth to light.

12 But where shall [b]Wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding?

13 Man knows not the price of it; neither is it found in the land of the living.

14 The deep says, [Wisdom] is not in me; and the sea says, It is not with me.

15 It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price of it.

16 It cannot be valued in [terms of] the gold of Ophir, in the precious onyx or beryl, or the sapphire.

17 Gold and glass cannot equal [Wisdom], nor can it be exchanged for jewels or vessels of fine gold.

18 No mention shall be made of coral or of crystal; for the possession of Wisdom is even above rubies or pearls.

19 The topaz of Ethiopia cannot compare with it, nor can it be valued in pure gold.

20 From where then does Wisdom come? And where is the place of understanding?

21 It is hidden from the eyes of all living, and knowledge of it is withheld from the birds of the heavens.

22 Abaddon (the place of destruction) and Death say, We have [only] heard the report of it with our ears.

23 God understands the way [to Wisdom] and He knows the place of it [Wisdom is with God alone].

24 For He looks to the ends of the earth and sees everything under the heavens.

25 When He gave to the wind weight or pressure and allotted the waters by measure,

26 When He made a decree for the rain and a way for the lightning of the thunder,

27 Then He saw [Wisdom] and declared it; He established it, yes, and searched it out [for His own use, and He alone possesses it].

28 But to man He said, Behold, the reverential and worshipful fear of the Lord—that is Wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.

Footnotes

  1. Job 28:5 Blasting of rocks is said to have been practiced on a large scale by the ancients (Speaker’s Commentary).
  2. Job 28:12 Wisdom is capitalized as a reminder of its divine implications. Note that the pronouns referring to wisdom are not capitalized. See footnote on Prov. 1:23.

Interlude: Where Wisdom Is Found

28 There is a mine for silver
    and a place where gold is refined.(A)
Iron is taken from the earth,
    and copper is smelted from ore.(B)
Mortals put an end to the darkness;(C)
    they search out the farthest recesses
    for ore in the blackest darkness.(D)
Far from human dwellings they cut a shaft,(E)
    in places untouched by human feet;
    far from other people they dangle and sway.
The earth, from which food comes,(F)
    is transformed below as by fire;
lapis lazuli(G) comes from its rocks,
    and its dust contains nuggets of gold.(H)
No bird of prey knows that hidden path,
    no falcon’s eye has seen it.(I)
Proud beasts(J) do not set foot on it,
    and no lion prowls there.(K)
People assault the flinty rock(L) with their hands
    and lay bare the roots of the mountains.(M)
10 They tunnel through the rock;(N)
    their eyes see all its treasures.(O)
11 They search[a] the sources of the rivers(P)
    and bring hidden things(Q) to light.

12 But where can wisdom be found?(R)
    Where does understanding dwell?(S)
13 No mortal comprehends its worth;(T)
    it cannot be found in the land of the living.(U)
14 The deep(V) says, “It is not in me”;
    the sea(W) says, “It is not with me.”
15 It cannot be bought with the finest gold,
    nor can its price be weighed out in silver.(X)
16 It cannot be bought with the gold of Ophir,(Y)
    with precious onyx or lapis lazuli.(Z)
17 Neither gold nor crystal can compare with it,(AA)
    nor can it be had for jewels of gold.(AB)
18 Coral(AC) and jasper(AD) are not worthy of mention;
    the price of wisdom is beyond rubies.(AE)
19 The topaz(AF) of Cush(AG) cannot compare with it;
    it cannot be bought with pure gold.(AH)

20 Where then does wisdom come from?
    Where does understanding dwell?(AI)
21 It is hidden from the eyes of every living thing,
    concealed even from the birds in the sky.(AJ)
22 Destruction[b](AK) and Death(AL) say,
    “Only a rumor of it has reached our ears.”
23 God understands the way to it
    and he alone(AM) knows where it dwells,(AN)
24 for he views the ends of the earth(AO)
    and sees everything under the heavens.(AP)
25 When he established the force of the wind
    and measured out the waters,(AQ)
26 when he made a decree for the rain(AR)
    and a path for the thunderstorm,(AS)
27 then he looked at wisdom and appraised it;
    he confirmed it and tested it.(AT)
28 And he said to the human race,
    “The fear of the Lord—that is wisdom,
    and to shun evil(AU) is understanding.”(AV)

Footnotes

  1. Job 28:11 Septuagint, Aquila and Vulgate; Hebrew They dam up
  2. Job 28:22 Hebrew Abaddon

Bible Gateway Sponsors