Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Job 13 - God's faces

In the next two chapters, Job presents more of the Psalmist's attitude as he switches from addressing his fellow humans to addressing God directly. Here it is that the simple core of the piece is decided - in the I-Thou encounter, not ever in any theological explanation or set of beliefs about God.

Lo - all this my eye has seen
and my ear has heard and understood
Even as you know, so I also know
I myself do not fall behind you

"Nevertheless for me, to the Sufficient I would speak"
but I desire to reason with the One
And nevertheless for you, smearers of lies
worthless physicians the lot of you
If only you were given silence and you kept silent
it would be wisdom to you

Hear please my reasons
and to the contentions of my lips attend
Will you of the One speak injustice?
and of him speak deceit?
Are you his faces lifting up
or for the One contending?
Is it good that he should find you out
or is it as jesting among mortals that you jest with him?
Reason? he will reason with you
if you concealed lift up faces
Should not his height terrify you
and his dread fall on you

Your memorials are a parable of dust
bodies of clay your bodies
Be silent - back off
and I myself will speak
and he will pass over me
on whatever
I will lift up my flesh by my teeth
and my life place in my open palm

Lo - he will kill me
I do not wait
Surely my ways before his faces I will reasoning prove
Also he will be my salvation
for a hypocrite will not come before his faces
So hear, hear my speeches
and my declaration with your ears
Behold please I order my judgment
I know for I will be just

Who is this who will contend against me!
For I will be silent - I will expire
But two things do not do against me
then from your faces I will not conceal myself
Your open palm put far from me
and your horror - let it not terrify me
then call and I myself will answer
or I will speak and you will turn to me

For what are my iniquities and my sins
my transgressions and my sins make me to know
and why do you conceal your faces
and count me as your enemy?
a scattered leaf will worry you?
and dry stubble will you hound?

for you write against me bitter things
and you cast in me the iniquities of my youth
You put my feet in the stocks
and watch all my paths
you pierce the roots of my feet
and this as rot decays
as a moth-eaten cloak

There are many new words in this chapter that recur before the end of the middle of this book - I suspect circles of thought surrounding a larger centre. Too big to see at the moment - if possible I will find an algorithm to make the hilights appear in a diagram.

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