Job 20:1-29

Zophar speaks to Job again

20:1Sadly, Zophar now says things that do not help Job. He tells him, again, that God will punish bad people. He does not understand how Job feels. He does not know how to help Job.

1 Then Zophar replied to Job:

2 ‘The things that you said cause me to be very confused.

I have troubles in my mind, but I must answer you.

3 You have said bad things about me.

But now I know how to reply to you.

4 I am sure that you know this fact.

It has been true ever since men lived on the earth.

5 A bad man will only be happy for a short time.

He will only enjoy his life for a few moments.

6 He may think that he is very important.

He may be very powerful and his head may seem to touch the sky.

20:6‘His head may seem to touch the sky.’ This means that important people seem to be taller than other people.

7 But he will die and he will never return.

He will disappear like dung that goes into the toilet.

His friends will ask, “Where he has gone?”

8 You will not find him again. He will be like a dream that you do not see in the morning.

He will have gone, like something that you saw in your dream.

9 People who knew him will not see him again.

No one will see him in the house where he lived before.

10 He was not a fair man and he took money from poor people.

So his children must pay that money back to them.

11 When he was a young man, he was very strong.

But he will die and his bones will lie in the ground.

12 He enjoys the wrong things that he does.

They are like something sweet in his mouth.

13 He continues to do wrong things.

That is like a man who keeps something in his mouth to taste it again and again.

14 But this will be like food that has become bad in his stomach.

It will be like the poison of a snake inside him.

15 He cannot keep all the money that he has taken from other people.

God will say that he should give it all back to them.

16 He will drink the poison of snakes.

A dangerous snake will bite him and it will kill him.

17 He might get as much oil from olives as there is water in the stream.

But he will not enjoy that oil.

He may have as much cream as there is water in the river.

But he will not enjoy that cream either.

Nor will he enjoy rivers of cream and other sweet things.

18 He will have to give back everything that he owned.

He will not enjoy the things that he has worked for.

19 This will happen because he took money from poor people.

And he took houses that someone else had built.

20 He will always want to have more money.

But his riches will not save him.

21 Now there is nothing that he can eat.

So his good health will not continue.

22 He may be very rich,

but he will soon have many troubles.

23 When he has filled his stomach with food, God will be very angry with him.

God will show him how angry he is. And God will punish him.

24 He may run from a soldier who has a sword.

But another soldier, with a bow, will catch him and he will shoot an arrow at him.

25 He pulls the arrow out of his back.

Its point hurts him and he is very afraid.

26 He will not be able to save the things that he had.

God will send a fire to kill him and to destroy everything that he had.

27 God in heaven knows about all the wrong things that a bad man does.

People on earth have also seen him do those wrong things.

28 God will be very angry. And he will destroy the bad man's home and all his things.

It will be like a flood that destroys a house.

29 This is what will happen to bad people.

God has decided that this will happen to them.’