Job replies to Zophar
12:1In chapters 12 to 14, Job speaks, first to Zophar and then to God. The things that Zophar has said do not help Job. Job knows everything that Zophar has told him. The wrong things that he has done have not caused his troubles. He knows that. Then Job speaks to God. He asks God to stop making him afraid. And he asks God to stop all the bad things that are happening.
1 Then Job replied. This is what he said:
2 ‘You seem to think that you know everything.
And you think that, after your death, no one else will be wise.
3 But I have a mind too. And you are no better than I am.
Everyone knows the things that you have told me.
4 All my friends think that I am a fool.
But I pray to God and he answers me.
I have always lived the right way.
But still my friends think that I am a fool.
5 Some people have no troubles.
It is easy for them to think that they are better than people with troubles.
It is easy to push a man who is nearly falling already.
And those people with no troubles are doing something like that.
6 Men who rob other people are safe in their homes.
They make God angry. But they think that they are safe.
7 But ask the animals, and they will teach you.
Or ask the birds in the air. They will tell you things that are true.
8 Speak to the earth, and it will teach you.
Or let the fish that are in the sea speak to you.
9 Any of them can tell you what the Lord has done.
10 He gives life to all the animals.
And he decides what the lives of men will be like.
11 We can taste food when we put it into our mouths.
And we learn the things that we hear with our ears.
12 Old people are often wise.
And they understand more things if they live for a long time.
13 But God is wise. And he helps us to be wise too.
He is strong and he makes us strong too.
14 No one can repair something that he has destroyed.
And if God puts someone in prison he must stay there. No one can help that person.
15 If God stops the rain, the land becomes a desert.
If he sends too much rain, there are floods.
16 God is strong. He will always beat anyone who fights against him.
He has power over good people and over bad people.
17 He takes away the wisdom of rulers.
And he causes leaders to seem like fools.
18 He takes from kings the special clothes that they wear.
He gives them instead cloths to tie round them.
19 God causes priests to lose their jobs.
Because of what he decides, important men lose their jobs too.
20 He confuses wise men.
And he removes wisdom from old men.
21 He causes rulers to be ashamed.
And he destroys the power of strong men.
22 He shows to us things that nobody knew.
And he makes the shadows of the night shine like the day.
23 He makes nations great, and then he destroys them.
He makes nations bigger. Then he sends the people in those nations away.
24 He destroys the understanding of kings.
And then he sends them to walk about in the desert.
25 They have no light while they walk in the dark.
And he causes them to walk like drunk men.’