Job 28

1“There are mines where people get silver and places where people melt gold to make it pure. 2Men dig iron from the ground. Copper is melted from the rocks. 3Workers carry lights into the caves. They search deep into the caves. They look for rocks in the deep darkness. 4Workers dig deep into the ground, following the veins of ore. They go deep down into the ground far away from where people live, down where no person has been before. They hang ˻from ropes far below ground˼, far away from other men. 5Food grows on the ground above. But underground, ˻it is different˼— as if everything were melted by fire. 6Underground there are sapphires and grains of pure gold. 7Wild birds know nothing about the paths under the ground. No falcon has ever seen those dark paths. 8Wild animals haven’t walked those paths. Lions haven’t traveled that way. 9Workers dig the hardest rocks. Those workers dig away at the mountains and make them bare. 10Workers cut tunnels through the rocks. They see all the rock’s treasures. 11The workers make dams to stop the water. They bring hidden things out into the light. 12“But where can a person find wisdom? Where can we go to find understanding? 13We don’t know how valuable wisdom is. People on earth ˻can’t dig in the ground˼ and find wisdom. 14The deep ocean says, 'Wisdom is not here with me.’ The sea says, 'Wisdom is not here with me.’ 15You can’t buy wisdom with even the purest gold. There isn’t enough silver in the world to buy wisdom. 16You can’t buy wisdom with gold from Ophir or precious onyx or sapphires. 17Wisdom is worth more than gold or crystal. Expensive jewels set in gold can’t buy wisdom. 18Wisdom is worth more than coral and jasper. Wisdom is more precious than rubies. 19The topaz from the country of Ethiopia is not as precious as wisdom. You can’t buy wisdom with pure gold. 20“So, where does wisdom come from? Where can we find understanding? 21Wisdom is hidden from every living thing on earth. Even birds in the sky can’t see wisdom. 22Death and destruction say, 'We haven’t found wisdom We have only heard rumors about it.’ 23“Only God knows the way to wisdom. Only God knows where wisdom is. 24God can see to the very ends of the earth. God sees everything under the sky. 25God gave the wind its power. God decided how big to make the oceans. 26God decided where to send the rain, and where the thunderstorms should go. 27At that time God saw wisdom and thought about it. God saw how much wisdom was worth. And God approved of wisdom. 28And God said to people, ”Fear and respect the Lord— that is wisdom. Don’t do evil things— that is understanding.”

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