New English Translation
III. Job's Search for Wisdom (28:1-28)
No Known Road to Wisdom
1 "Surely there is a mine for silver, and a place where gold is refined.
2 Iron is taken from the ground, and rock is poured out as copper.
3 Man puts an end to the darkness; he searches the farthest recesses for the ore in the deepest darkness.
4 Far from where people live he sinks a shaft, in places travelers have long forgotten, far from other people he dangles and sways.
5 The earth, from which food comes, is overturned below as though by fire;
6 a place whose stones are sapphires and which contains dust of gold;
7 a hidden path no bird of prey knows - no falcon's eye has spotted it.
8 Proud beasts have not set foot on it, and no lion has passed along it.
9 On the flinty rock man has set to work with his hand; he has overturned mountains at their bases.
10 He has cut out channels through the rocks; his eyes have spotted every precious thing.
11 He has searched the sources of the rivers and what was hidden he has brought into the light.
No Price Can Buy Wisdom
12 "But wisdom - where can it be found? Where is the place of understanding?
13 Mankind does not know its place; it cannot be found in the land of the living.
14 The deep says, 'It is not with me.' And the sea says, 'It is not with me.'
15 Fine gold cannot be given in exchange for it, nor can its price be weighed out in silver.
16 It cannot be measured out for purchase with the gold of Ophir, with precious onyx or sapphires.
17 Neither gold nor crystal can be compared with it, nor can a vase of gold match its worth.
18 Of coral and jasper no mention will be made; the price of wisdom is more than pearls.
19 The topaz of Cush cannot be compared with it; it cannot be purchased with pure gold.
God Alone Has Wisdom
20 "But wisdom - where does it come from? Where is the place of understanding?
21 For it has been hidden from the eyes of every living creature, and from the birds of the sky it has been concealed.
22 Destruction and Death say, 'With our ears we have heard a rumor about where it can be found.'
23 God understands the way to it, and he alone knows its place.
24 For he looks to the ends of the earth and observes everything under the heavens.
25 When he made the force of the wind and measured the waters with a gauge.
26 When he imposed a limit for the rain, and a path for the thunderstorm,
27 then he looked at wisdom and assessed its value; he established it and examined it closely.
28 And he said to mankind, 'The fear of the LORD - that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding.'"
King James Version
1 Surely there is a vein for the silver, and a place for gold where they fine it.
2 Iron is taken out of the earth, and brass is molten out of the stone.
3 He setteth an end to darkness, and searcheth out all perfection: the stones of darkness, and the shadow of death.
4 The flood breaketh out from the inhabitant; even the waters forgotten of the foot: they are dried up, they are gone away from men.
5 As for the earth, out of it cometh bread: and under it is turned up as it were fire.
6 The stones of it are the place of sapphires: and it hath dust of gold.
7 There is a path which no fowl knoweth, and which the vulture's eye hath not seen:
8 The lion's whelps have not trodden it, nor the fierce lion passed by it.
9 He putteth forth his hand upon the rock; he overturneth the mountains by the roots.
10 He cutteth out rivers among the rocks; and his eye seeth every precious thing.
11 He bindeth the floods from overflowing; and the thing that is hid bringeth he forth to light.
12 But where shall wisdom be found? and where is the place of understanding?
13 Man knoweth not the price thereof; neither is it found in the land of the living.
14 The depth saith, It is not in me: and the sea saith, It is not with me.
15 It cannot be gotten for gold, neither shall silver be weighed for the price thereof.
16 It cannot be valued with the gold of Ophir, with the precious onyx, or the sapphire.
17 The gold and the crystal cannot equal it: and the exchange of it shall not be for jewels of fine gold.
18 No mention shall be made of coral, or of pearls: for the price of wisdom is above rubies.
19 The topaz of Ethiopia shall not equal it, neither shall it be valued with pure gold.
20 Whence then cometh wisdom? and where is the place of understanding?
21 Seeing it is hid from the eyes of all living, and kept close from the fowls of the air.
22 Destruction and death say, We have heard the fame thereof with our ears.
23 God understandeth the way thereof, and he knoweth the place thereof.
24 For he looketh to the ends of the earth, and seeth under the whole heaven;
25 To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure.
26 When he made a decree for the rain, and a way for the lightning of the thunder:
27 Then did he see it, and declare it; he prepared it, yea, and searched it out.
28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.