Behemoth and LeviathanThursday 26th August 2021

Job 40-41

Job 40–41

40:1 And the LORD said to Job:

  “Shall a faultfinder contend with the Almighty?
    He who argues with God, let him answer it.”

Job Promises Silence

Then Job answered the LORD and said:

  “Behold, I am of small account; what shall I answer you?
    I lay my hand on my mouth.
  I have spoken once, and I will not answer;
    twice, but I will proceed no further.”

The Lord Challenges Job

Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said:

  “Dress for action1 like a man;
    I will question you, and you make it known to me.
  Will you even put me in the wrong?
    Will you condemn me that you may be in the right?
  Have you an arm like God,
    and can you thunder with a voice like his?
10   “Adorn yourself with majesty and dignity;
    clothe yourself with glory and splendor.
11   Pour out the overflowings of your anger,
    and look on everyone who is proud and abase him.
12   Look on everyone who is proud and bring him low
    and tread down the wicked where they stand.
13   Hide them all in the dust together;
    bind their faces in the world below.2
14   Then will I also acknowledge to you
    that your own right hand can save you.
15   “Behold, Behemoth,3
    which I made as I made you;
    he eats grass like an ox.
16   Behold, his strength in his loins,
    and his power in the muscles of his belly.
17   He makes his tail stiff like a cedar;
    the sinews of his thighs are knit together.
18   His bones are tubes of bronze,
    his limbs like bars of iron.
19   “He is the first of the works4 of God;
    let him who made him bring near his sword!
20   For the mountains yield food for him
    where all the wild beasts play.
21   Under the lotus plants he lies,
    in the shelter of the reeds and in the marsh.
22   For his shade the lotus trees cover him;
    the willows of the brook surround him.
23   Behold, if the river is turbulent he is not frightened;
    he is confident though Jordan rushes against his mouth.
24   Can one take him by his eyes,5
    or pierce his nose with a snare?
41:1   6 “Can you draw out Leviathan7 with a fishhook
    or press down his tongue with a cord?
  Can you put a rope in his nose
    or pierce his jaw with a hook?
  Will he make many pleas to you?
    Will he speak to you soft words?
  Will he make a covenant with you
    to take him for your servant forever?
  Will you play with him as with a bird,
    or will you put him on a leash for your girls?
  Will traders bargain over him?
    Will they divide him up among the merchants?
  Can you fill his skin with harpoons
    or his head with fishing spears?
  Lay your hands on him;
    remember the battle—you will not do it again!
  8 Behold, the hope of a man is false;
    he is laid low even at the sight of him.
10   No one is so fierce that he dares to stir him up.
    Who then is he who can stand before me?
11   Who has first given to me, that I should repay him?
    Whatever is under the whole heaven is mine.
12   “I will not keep silence concerning his limbs,
    or his mighty strength, or his goodly frame.
13   Who can strip off his outer garment?
    Who would come near him with a bridle?
14   Who can open the doors of his face?
    Around his teeth is terror.
15   His back is made of9 rows of shields,
    shut up closely as with a seal.
16   One is so near to another
    that no air can come between them.
17   They are joined one to another;
    they clasp each other and cannot be separated.
18   His sneezings flash forth light,
    and his eyes are like the eyelids of the dawn.
19   Out of his mouth go flaming torches;
    sparks of fire leap forth.
20   Out of his nostrils comes forth smoke,
    as from a boiling pot and burning rushes.
21   His breath kindles coals,
    and a flame comes forth from his mouth.
22   In his neck abides strength,
    and terror dances before him.
23   The folds of his flesh stick together,
    firmly cast on him and immovable.
24   His heart is hard as a stone,
    hard as the lower millstone.
25   When he raises himself up, the mighty10 are afraid;
    at the crashing they are beside themselves.
26   Though the sword reaches him, it does not avail,
    nor the spear, the dart, or the javelin.
27   He counts iron as straw,
    and bronze as rotten wood.
28   The arrow cannot make him flee;
    for him, sling stones are turned to stubble.
29   Clubs are counted as stubble;
    he laughs at the rattle of javelins.
30   His underparts are like sharp potsherds;
    he spreads himself like a threshing sledge on the mire.
31   He makes the deep boil like a pot;
    he makes the sea like a pot of ointment.
32   Behind him he leaves a shining wake;
    one would think the deep to be white-haired.
33   On earth there is not his like,
    a creature without fear.
34   He sees everything that is high;
    he is king over all the sons of pride.”

Footnotes

[1] 40:7 Hebrew Gird up your loins
[2] 40:13 Hebrew in the hidden place
[3] 40:15 A large animal, exact identity unknown
[4] 40:19 Hebrew ways
[5] 40:24 Or in his sight
[6] 41:1 Ch 40:25 in Hebrew
[7] 41:1 A large sea animal, exact identity unknown
[8] 41:9 Ch 41:1 in Hebrew
[9] 41:15 Or His pride is in his
[10] 41:25 Or gods

(ESV)

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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