1“Why doesn’t the Mighty One set a time for judging sinful people?
Why do those who know him have to keep waiting for that day?
2People move their neighbor’s boundary stones.
They steal their neighbor’s flocks.
3They take away the donkeys
that belong to children whose fathers have died.
They take a widow’s ox until she has paid what she owes.
4They push those who are needy out of their way.
They force all the poor people in the land to go into hiding.
5The poor are like wild donkeys in the desert.
They have to go around looking for food.
The dry and empty land provides the only food for their children.
6The poor go to the fields and get a little grain.
They gather up what is left in the vineyards of sinners.
7The poor don’t have any clothes. So they spend the night naked.
They don’t have anything to cover themselves in the cold.
8They are soaked by mountain rains.
They hug the rocks because they don’t have anything to keep them warm.
9Children whose fathers have died
are torn away from their mothers.
A poor person’s baby is taken away to pay back what is owed.
10The poor don’t have any clothes. They go around naked.
They carry bundles of grain, but they still go hungry.
11They work very hard as they crush olives.
They stomp on grapes in winepresses,
but they are still thirsty.
12The groans of those who are dying are heard from the city.
Those who are wounded cry out for help.
But God doesn’t charge anyone with doing what is wrong.
13“Some people hate it when daylight comes.
In the daytime they never walk outside.
14When daylight is gone, murderers get up.
They kill poor people and those who are in need.
In the night they sneak around like robbers.
15Those who commit adultery wait until the sun goes down.
They think, ‘No one will see us.’
They keep their faces hidden.
16In the dark, thieves break into houses.
But by day they shut themselves in.
They don’t want anything to do with the light.
17Midnight is like morning to them.
The terrors of darkness are their friends.
18“But sinners are like bubbles on the surface of water.
Their share of the land is under God’s curse.
So no one goes to their vineyards.
19Melted snow disappears when the air is hot and dry.
And sinners disappear when they go down into their graves.
20Even their mothers forget them.
The worms in their graves eat them up.
No one remembers sinful people anymore.
They are cut down like trees.
21They mistreat women who aren’t able to have children.
They aren’t kind to widows.
22But God is powerful.
He even drags away people who are strong.
When he rises up against them,
they can never be sure they are safe.
23God might let them rest and feel secure.
But his eyes see how they live.
24For a little while they are honored.
Then they are gone.
They are brought low.
And they die like everyone else.
They are cut off like heads of grain.
25“Who can prove that what I’m saying is wrong?
Who can prove that my words aren’t true?”