1 Then from the heart of the tempest Yahweh gave Job his answer. He said:
2 Who is this, obscuring my intentions with his ignorant words?
3 Brace yourself like a fighter; I am going to ask the questions, and you are to inform me!
4 Where were you when I laid the earth's foundations? Tell me, since you are so well-informed!
5 Who decided its dimensions, do you know? Or who stretched the measuring line across it?
6 What supports its pillars at their bases? Who laid its cornerstone
7 to the joyful concert of the morning stars and unanimous acclaim of the sons of God?
8 Who pent up the sea behind closed doors when it leapt tumultuous from the womb,
9 when I wrapped it in a robe of mist and made black clouds its swaddling bands;
10 when I cut out the place I had decreed for it and imposed gates and a bolt?
11 'Come so far,' I said, 'and no further; here your proud waves must break!'
12 Have you ever in your life given orders to the morning or sent the dawn to its post,
13 to grasp the earth by its edges and shake the wicked out of it?
14 She turns it as red as a clay seal, she tints it as though it were a dress,
15 stealing the light from evil-doers and breaking the arm raised to strike.
16 Have you been right down to the sources of the sea and walked about at the bottom of the Abyss?
17 Have you been shown the gates of Death, have you seen the janitors of the Shadow dark as death?
18 Have you an inkling of the extent of the earth? Tell me all about it if you have!
19 Which is the way to the home of the Light, and where does darkness live? -
20 You could then show them the way to their proper places, you could put them on the path home again!
21 If you do know, you must have been born when they were, you must be very old by now!
22 Have you visited the place where the snow is stored? Have you seen the stores of hail,
23 which I keep for times of distress, for days of battle and war?
24 From which direction does the lightning fork, where in the world does the east wind blow itself out?
25 Who bores a channel for the downpour or clears the way for the rolling thunder
26 so that rain may fall on lands where no one lives, and the deserts void of human dwelling,
27 to meet the needs of the lonely wastes and make grass sprout on the thirsty ground?
28 Has the rain a father? Who begets the dewdrops?
29 What womb brings forth the ice, who gives birth to the frost of heaven,
30 when the waters grow hard as stone and the surface of the deep congeals?
31 Can you fasten the harness of the Pleiades, or untie Orion's bands?
32 Can you guide the Crown season by season and show the Bear and its cubs which way to go?
33 Have you grasped the celestial laws? Could you make their writ run on the earth?
34 Can your voice carry as far as the clouds and make the pent-up waters do your bidding?
35 Will lightning flashes come at your command and answer, 'Here we are'?
36 Who endowed the ibis with wisdom and gave the cock his intelligence?
37 Whose skill details every cloud and tilts the water-skins of heaven
38 until the dust solidifies and the cracks in the ground close up?
39 Do you go hunting prey for the lioness; do you satisfy the hunger of young lions
40 where they crouch in their den, waiting eagerly in the bushes?
41 Who makes provision for the raven when his little ones cry out to God craning their necks in search of food?