Job Tells of Earth’s Treasures

28 “Surely there is a [a]mine for silver
And a place [b]where they refine gold.
“Iron is taken from the dust,
And copper is smelted from rock.
Man puts an end to darkness,
And (A)to the farthest limit he searches out
The rock in gloom and deep shadow.
“He [c]sinks a shaft far from [d]habitation,
Forgotten by the foot;
They hang and swing to and fro far from men.
“The earth, from it comes food,
And underneath it is turned up as fire.
“Its rocks are the [e]source of sapphires,
And its dust contains gold.
“The path no bird of prey knows,
Nor has the falcon’s eye caught sight of it.
“The [f]proud beasts have not trodden it,
Nor has the fierce lion passed over it.
“He puts his hand on the flint;
He overturns the mountains at the [g]base.
10 “He hews out channels through the rocks,
And his eye sees anything precious.
11 “He dams up the streams from [h]flowing,
And what is hidden he brings out to the light.

The Search for Wisdom Is Harder

12 “But (B)where can wisdom be found?
And where is the place of understanding?
13 (C)Man does not know its value,
Nor is it found in the land of the living.
14 “The deep says, ‘It is not in me’;
And the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’
15 (D)Pure gold cannot be given in exchange for it,
Nor can silver be weighed as its price.
16 “It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir,
In precious onyx, or sapphire.
17 (E)Gold or glass cannot equal it,
Nor can it be exchanged for articles of fine gold.
18 “Coral and crystal are not to be mentioned;
And the acquisition of (F)wisdom is above that of pearls.
19 “The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it,
Nor can it be valued in (G)pure gold.
20 (H)Where then does wisdom come from?
And where is the place of understanding?
21 “Thus it is hidden from the eyes of all living
And concealed from the birds of the sky.
22 [i](I)Abaddon and Death say,
‘With our ears we have heard a report of it.’

23 (J)God understands its way,
And He knows its place.
24 “For He (K)looks to the ends of the earth
And sees everything under the heavens.
25 “When He imparted (L)weight to the wind
And (M)meted out the waters by measure,
26 When He set a (N)limit for the rain
And a course for the (O)thunderbolt,
27 Then He saw it and declared it;
He established it and also searched it out.
28 “And to man He said, ‘Behold, the (P)fear of the Lord, that is wisdom;
And to depart from evil is understanding.’”

Footnotes

  1. Job 28:1 Or source
  2. Job 28:1 Lit for gold they refine
  3. Job 28:4 Lit breaks open
  4. Job 28:4 Lit sojourning
  5. Job 28:6 Or place
  6. Job 28:8 Lit sons of pride
  7. Job 28:9 Lit roots
  8. Job 28:11 Lit weeping
  9. Job 28:22 I.e. Destruction

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

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