Job 24

The Apparent Indifference of God

24:1 “Why are times not appointed by1 the Almighty?2

Why do those who know him not see his days?

24:2 Men3 move boundary stones;

they seize the flock and pasture them.4

24:3 They drive away the orphan’s donkey;

they take the widow’s ox as a pledge.

24:4 They turn the needy from the pathway,

and the poor of the land hide themselves together.5

24:5 Like6 wild donkeys in the desert

they7 go out to their labor,8

seeking diligently for food;

the wasteland provides9 food for them

and for their children.

24:6 They reap fodder10 in the field,

and glean11 in the vineyard of the wicked.

24:7 They spend the night naked because they lack clothing;

they have no covering against the cold.

24:8 They are soaked by mountain rains

and huddle12 in the rocks because they lack shelter.

24:9 The fatherless child is snatched13 from the breast,14

the infant of the poor is taken as a pledge.15

24:10 They go about naked, without clothing,

and go hungry while they carry the sheaves.16

24:11 They press out the olive oil between the rows of olive trees;17

they tread the winepresses while they are thirsty.18

24:12 From the city the dying19 groan,

and the wounded20 cry out for help,

but God charges no one with wrongdoing.21

24:13 There are those22 who rebel against the light;

they do not know its ways

and they do not stay on its paths.

24:14 Before daybreak23 the murderer rises up;

he kills the poor and the needy;

in the night he is24 like a thief.25

24:15 And the eye of the adulterer watches for the twilight,

thinking,26 ‘No eye can see me,’

and covers his face with a mask.

24:16 In the dark the robber27 breaks into houses,28

but by day they shut themselves in;29

they do not know the light.30

24:17 For all of them,31 the morning is to them

like deep darkness;

they are friends with the terrors of darkness.

24:1832 “You say,33 ‘He is foam34 on the face of the waters;35

their portion of the land is cursed

so that no one goes to their vineyard.36

24:19 The drought as well as the heat carry away

the melted snow;37

so the grave38 takes away those who have sinned.39

24:20 The womb40 forgets him,

the worm feasts on him,

no longer will he be remembered.

Like a tree, wickedness will be broken down.

24:21 He preys on41 the barren and childless woman,42

and does not treat the widow well.

24:22 But God43 drags off the mighty by his power;

when God44 rises up against him, he has no faith in his life.45

24:23 God46 may let them rest in a feeling of security,47

but he is constantly watching48 all their ways.49

24:24 They are exalted for a little while,

and then they are gone,50

they are brought low51 like all others,

and gathered in,52

and like a head of grain they are cut off.’53

24:25 “If this is not so, who can prove me a liar

and reduce my words to nothing?”54

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