Job 40:4
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"I am unworthy--how can I reply to you? I put my hand over my mouth.

New Living Translation
"I am nothing--how could I ever find the answers? I will cover my mouth with my hand.

English Standard Version
“Behold, I am of small account; what shall I answer you? I lay my hand on my mouth.

New American Standard Bible
"Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth.

King James Bible
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay mine hand upon my mouth.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I am so insignificant. How can I answer You? I place my hand over my mouth.

International Standard Version
"I must look insignificant to you! How can I answer you? I'm speechless.

NET Bible
"Indeed, I am completely unworthy--how could I reply to you? I put my hand over my mouth to silence myself.

New Heart English Bible
"Look, I am of small account. What shall I answer you? I lay my hand on my mouth.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"I'm so insignificant. How can I answer you? I will put my hand over my mouth.

JPS Tanakh 1917
Behold, I am of small account; what shall I answer Thee? I lay my hand upon my mouth.

New American Standard 1977
“Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to Thee?
            I lay my hand on my mouth.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay my hand over my mouth.

King James 2000 Bible
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer you? I will lay my hand upon my mouth.

American King James Version
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer you? I will lay my hand on my mouth.

American Standard Version
Behold, I am of small account; What shall I answer thee? I lay my hand upon my mouth.

Douay-Rheims Bible


Darby Bible Translation
Behold, I am nought: what shall I answer thee? I will lay my hand upon my mouth.

English Revised Version
Behold, I am of small account; what shall I answer thee? I lay mine hand upon my mouth.

Webster's Bible Translation
Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay my hand upon my mouth.

World English Bible
"Behold, I am of small account. What shall I answer you? I lay my hand on my mouth.

Young's Literal Translation
Lo, I have been vile, What do I return to Thee? My hand I have placed on my mouth.
Study Bible
Job Humbles Himself Before God
3Then Job answered the LORD and said, 4"Behold, I am insignificant; what can I reply to You? I lay my hand on my mouth. 5"Once I have spoken, and I will not answer; Even twice, and I will add nothing more."…
Cross References
Judges 18:19
They said to him, "Be silent, put your hand over your mouth and come with us, and be to us a father and a priest. Is it better for you to be a priest to the house of one man, or to be priest to a tribe and a family in Israel?"

Job 21:5
"Look at me, and be astonished, And put your hand over your mouth.

Job 29:9
"The princes stopped talking And put their hands on their mouths;

Job 40:3
Then Job answered the LORD and said,

Proverbs 30:32
If you have been foolish in exalting yourself Or if you have plotted evil, put your hand on your mouth.

Lamentations 3:29
Let him put his mouth in the dust, Perhaps there is hope.
Treasury of Scripture

Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer you? I will lay my hand on my mouth.

Behold

Job 42:6 Why I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.

Genesis 18:27 And Abraham answered and said, Behold now, I have taken on me to …

Genesis 32:10 I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, …

2 Samuel 24:10 And David's heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. …

1 Kings 19:4 But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came …

Ezra 9:6,15 And said, O my God, I am ashamed and blush to lift up my face to …

Nehemiah 9:33 However, you are just in all that is brought on us; for you have …

Psalm 51:4,5 Against you, you only, have I sinned, and done this evil in your …

Isaiah 6:5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean …

Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his …

Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are …

Daniel 9:5,7 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, …

Luke 5:8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, Depart …

Luke 15:18,19 I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, Father, I …

Luke 18:13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as …

1 Timothy 1:15 This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ …

what

Job 9:31-35 Yet shall you plunge me in the ditch, and my own clothes shall abhor me…

Job 16:21 O that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleads for his neighbor!

Job 23:4-7 I would order my cause before him, and fill my mouth with arguments…

Job 31:37 I would declare to him the number of my steps; as a prince would …

I will

Job 21:5 Mark me, and be astonished, and lay your hand on your mouth.

Job 29:9 The princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on their mouth.

Judges 18:19 And they said to him, Hold your peace, lay your hand on your mouth, …

Psalm 39:9 I was dumb, I opened not my mouth; because you did it.

Proverbs 30:32 If you have done foolishly in lifting up yourself, or if you have …

Micah 7:16 The nations shall see and be confounded at all their might: they …

Habakkuk 2:20 But the LORD is in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him.

Zechariah 2:13 Be silent, O all flesh, before the LORD: for he is raised up out …

Behold, I am vile,.... Or "light" (a); which may have respect either to his words and arguments, which he thought had force in them, but now he saw they had none; or to his works and actions, the integrity of his life, and the uprightness of his ways, which he imagined were weighty and of great importance, but now being weighed in the balances of justice were found wanting; or it may refer to his original meanness and distance from God, being dust and ashes, and nothing in comparison of him; and so the Septuagint version is, "I am nothing"; see Isaiah 40:17; or rather to the original vileness and sinfulness of his nature he had now a sight of, and saw how he had been breaking forth in unbecoming expressions concerning God and his providence: the nature of man is exceeding vile and sinful; his heart desperately wicked; his thoughts, and the imaginations of them, evil, and that continually; his mind and conscience are defiled; his affections inordinate, and his understanding and will sadly depraved; he is vile in soul and body; of all which an enlightened man is convinced, and will acknowledge;

what shall I answer thee? I am not able to answer thee, who am but dust and ashes; what more can I say than to acknowledge my levity, vanity, and vileness? he that talked so big, and in such a blustering manner of answering God, as in Job 13:22; now has nothing to say for himself;

I will lay mine hand upon my mouth; impose silence upon himself, and as it were lay a restraint upon himself from speaking: it looks as if there were some workings in Job's heart; he thought he could say something, and make some reply, but durst not, for fear of offending yet more and more, and therefore curbed it in; see Psalm 39:1.

(a) "levis sum", Cocceius, Michaelis; "leviter locutus sum", V. L. 4. I am (too) vile (to reply). It is a very different thing to vindicate ourselves before God, from what it is before men. Job could do the latter, not the former.

lay … hand … upon … mouth—I have no plea to offer (Job 21:5; Jud 18:19).40:1-5 Communion with the Lord effectually convinces and humbles a saint, and makes him glad to part with his most beloved sins. There is need to be thoroughly convinced and humbled, to prepare us for remarkable deliverances. After God had shown Job, by his manifest ignorance of the works of nature, how unable he was to judge of the methods and designs of Providence, he puts a convincing question to him; Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? Now Job began to melt into godly sorrow: when his friends reasoned with him, he did not yield; but the voice of the Lord is powerful. When the Spirit of truth is come, he shall convince. Job yields himself to the grace of God. He owns himself an offender, and has nothing to say to justify himself. He is now sensible that he has sinned; and therefore he calls himself vile. Repentance changes men's opinion of themselves. Job is now convinced of his error. Those who are truly sensible of their own sinfulness and vileness, dare not justify themselves before God. He perceived that he was a poor, mean, foolish, and sinful creature, who ought not to have uttered one word against the Divine conduct. One glimpse of God's holy nature would appal the stoutest rebel. How, then will the wicked bear the sight of his glory at the day of judgment? But when we see this glory revealed in Jesus Christ, we shall be humbled without being terrified; self-abasement agrees with filial love.
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