Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? tell me now, if thou hast knowledge, who set the measures of it, if thou knowest? Or who stretched a line upon it? Or did I order the morning light in thy time?Or didst thou take clay of the earth, and form a living creature, and set it with the power of speech upon theearth? And do the gates of death open to thee for fear; and did the gate-keepers of Hades quake when they saw thee? (Job 38:4-16)
The text is vivid and striking. But there is a problem here: this last portion of the quotation from the Book of Job is quite different in the Protestant text. In the Revised Standard Version, for example, it reads as follows: “Have the gates of death been revealed to you, or have you seen the gates of deep darkness?” Very different indeed, and not much of a “prophecy” of the actual event. One might say that, as a prophecy of our Saviour’s descent into and destruction of Sheol, it has all the vigor and verve of an overcooked noodle.