4 His sons used to take turns holding feasts in their homes, and they would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. 5 When a period of feasting had run its course, Job would send and have them purified. Early in the morning he would sacrifice a burnt offering for each of them, thinking, "Perhaps my children have sinned and cursed God in their hearts." This was Job's regular custom.
One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also
came with them. 7 The LORD said to Satan, "Where have
you come from?"
Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
8 Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil."
9 "Does Job fear God for nothing?" Satan replied. 10 "Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face."
LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands,
but on the man himself do not lay a finger."
Then Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.
13 One day when Job's sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house, 14 a messenger came to Job and said, "The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby, 15 and the Sabeans attacked and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
16 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, "The fire of God fell from the sky and burned up the sheep and the servants, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
17 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, "The Chaldeans formed three raiding parties and swept down on your camels and carried them off. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
18 While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, "Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother's house, 19 when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!"
this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the
ground in worship 21 and said:
"Naked I came from my mother's womb,
and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away;
may the name of the LORD be praised."
22 In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.
On another day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan
also came with them to present himself before him. 2 And the
LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?"
Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
3 Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason."
4 "Skin for skin!" Satan replied. "A man will give all he has for his own life. 5 But stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face."
6 The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life."
7 So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the top of his head. 8 Then Job took a piece of broken pottery and scraped himself with it as he sat among the ashes.
9 His wife said to him, "Are you still holding on to your integrity? Curse God and die!"
replied, "You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?"
In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.
1 After this, Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth. 2 He said:
"May the day of my birth perish,
and the night it was said, 'A boy is born!'
day—may it turn to darkness;
may God above not care about it;
may no light shine upon it.
darkness and deep shadow claim it once more;
may a cloud settle over it;
may blackness overwhelm its light.
night—may thick darkness seize it;
may it not be included among the days of the year
nor be entered in any of the months.
that night be barren;
may no shout of joy be heard in it.
those who curse days curse that day,
those who are ready to rouse Leviathan.
9 May its
morning stars become dark;
may it wait for daylight in vain
and not see the first rays of dawn,
10 for it
did not shut the doors of the womb on me
to hide trouble from my eyes.
"Why did I not perish at birth,
and die as I came from the womb?
were there knees to receive me
and breasts that I might be nursed?
now I would be lying down in peace;
I would be asleep and at rest
kings and counselors of the earth,
who built for themselves places now lying in ruins,
with rulers who had gold,
who filled their houses with silver.
16 Or why
was I not hidden in the ground like a stillborn child,
like an infant who never saw the light of day?
the wicked cease from turmoil,
and there the weary are at rest.
Captives also enjoy their ease;
they no longer hear the slave driver's shout.
small and the great are there,
and the slave is freed from his master.
"Why is light given to those in misery,
and life to the bitter of soul,
those who long for death that does not come,
who search for it more than for hidden treasure,
are filled with gladness
and rejoice when they reach the grave?
23 Why is
life given to a man
whose way is hidden,
whom God has hedged in?
sighing comes to me instead of food;
my groans pour out like water.
25 What I
feared has come upon me;
what I dreaded has happened to me.
26 I have
no peace, no quietness;
I have no rest, but only turmoil."
1 Then Job replied:
"If only my anguish could be weighed
and all my misery be placed on the scales!
would surely outweigh the sand of the seas—
no wonder my words have been impetuous.
arrows of the Almighty are in me,
my spirit drinks in their poison;
God's terrors are marshaled against me.
"Does not man have hard service on earth?
Are not his days like those of a hired man?
2 Like a
slave longing for the evening shadows,
or a hired man waiting eagerly for his wages,
3 so I
have been allotted months of futility,
and nights of misery have been assigned to me.
4 When I
lie down I think, 'How long before I get up?'
The night drags on, and I toss till dawn.
5 My body
is clothed with worms and scabs,
my skin is broken and festering.
"My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle,
and they come to an end without hope.
Remember, O God, that my life is but a breath;
my eyes will never see happiness again.
8 The eye
that now sees me will see me no longer;
you will look for me, but I will be no more.
9 As a
cloud vanishes and is gone,
so he who goes down to the grave [a] does not return.
will never come to his house again;
his place will know him no more.
"Therefore I will not keep silent;
I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit,
I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.
12 Am I
the sea, or the monster of the deep,
that you put me under guard?
13 When I
think my bed will comfort me
and my couch will ease my complaint,
then you frighten me with dreams
and terrify me with visions,
so that I prefer strangling and death,
rather than this body of mine.
despise my life; I would not live forever.
Let me alone; my days have no meaning.
"What is man that you make so much of him,
that you give him so much attention,
that you examine him every morning
and test him every moment?
you never look away from me,
or let me alone even for an instant?
20 If I
have sinned, what have I done to you,
O watcher of men?
Why have you made me your target?
Have I become a burden to you?
21 Why do
you not pardon my offenses
and forgive my sins?
For I will soon lie down in the dust;
you will search for me, but I will be no more."
"I loathe my very life;
therefore I will give free rein to my complaint
and speak out in the bitterness of my soul.
2 I will
say to God: Do not condemn me,
but tell me what charges you have against me.
3 Does it
please you to oppress me,
to spurn the work of your hands,
while you smile on the schemes of the wicked?
4 Do you
have eyes of flesh?
Do you see as a mortal sees?
your days like those of a mortal
or your years like those of a man,
you must search out my faults
and probe after my sin-
though you know that I am not guilty
and that no one can rescue me from your hand?
"Your hands shaped me and made me.
Will you now turn and destroy me?
Remember that you molded me like clay.
Will you now turn me to dust again?
you not pour me out like milk
and curdle me like cheese,
me with skin and flesh
and knit me together with bones and sinews?
gave me life and showed me kindness,
and in your providence watched over my spirit.
"But this is what you concealed in your heart,
and I know that this was in your mind:
14 If I
sinned, you would be watching me
and would not let my offense go unpunished.
15 If I
am guilty—woe to me!
Even if I am innocent, I cannot lift my head,
for I am full of shame
and drowned in my affliction.
16 If I
hold my head high, you stalk me like a lion
and again display your awesome power against me.
bring new witnesses against me
and increase your anger toward me;
your forces come against me wave upon wave.
"Why then did you bring me out of the womb?
I wish I had died before any eye saw me.
only I had never come into being,
or had been carried straight from the womb to the grave!
not my few days almost over?
Turn away from me so I can have a moment's joy
I go to the place of no return,
to the land of gloom and deep shadow,
to the land of deepest night,
of deep shadow and disorder,
where even the light is like darkness."
1 My spirit
my days are cut short,
the grave awaits me.
1 Then Job replied:
"Even today my complaint is bitter;
his hand is heavy in spite of my groaning.
3 If only
I knew where to find him;
if only I could go to his dwelling!
4 I would
state my case before him
and fill my mouth with arguments.
5 I would
find out what he would answer me,
and consider what he would say.
6 Would he
oppose me with great power?
No, he would not press charges against me.
an upright man could present his case before him,
and I would be delivered forever from my judge.
"But if I go to the east, he is not there;
if I go to the west, I do not find him.
9 When he
is at work in the north, I do not see him;
when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him.
10 But he
knows the way that I take;
when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.
feet have closely followed his steps;
I have kept to his way without turning aside.
12 I have
not departed from the commands of his lips;
I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.
"But he stands alone, and who can oppose him?
He does whatever he pleases.
carries out his decree against me,
and many such plans he still has in store.
is why I am terrified before him;
when I think of all this, I fear him.
has made my heart faint;
the Almighty has terrified me.
17 Yet I
am not silenced by the darkness,
by the thick darkness that covers my face.
"And now my life ebbs away;
days of suffering grip me.
pierces my bones;
my gnawing pains never rest.
18 In his
great power God becomes like clothing to me;
he binds me like the neck of my garment.
throws me into the mud,
and I am reduced to dust and ashes.
"I cry out to you, O God, but you do not answer;
I stand up, but you merely look at me.
turn on me ruthlessly;
with the might of your hand you attack me.
snatch me up and drive me before the wind;
you toss me about in the storm.
23 I know
you will bring me down to death,
to the place appointed for all the living.
"Surely no one lays a hand on a broken man
when he cries for help in his distress.
25 Have I
not wept for those in trouble?
Has not my soul grieved for the poor?
when I hoped for good, evil came;
when I looked for light, then came darkness.
churning inside me never stops;
days of suffering confront me.
28 I go
about blackened, but not by the sun;
I stand up in the assembly and cry for help.
29 I have
become a brother of jackals,
a companion of owls.
skin grows black and peels;
my body burns with fever.
harp is tuned to mourning,
and my flute to the sound of wailing.
1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the storm. He said:
"Who is this that darkens my counsel
with words without knowledge?
yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.
"Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6 On what
were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone-
while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels shouted for joy?
"Who shut up the sea behind doors
when it burst forth from the womb,
9 when I
made the clouds its garment
and wrapped it in thick darkness,
10 when I
fixed limits for it
and set its doors and bars in place,
11 when I
said, 'This far you may come and no farther;
here is where your proud waves halt'?
"Have you ever given orders to the morning,
or shown the dawn its place,
that it might take the earth by the edges
and shake the wicked out of it?
earth takes shape like clay under a seal;
its features stand out like those of a garment.
wicked are denied their light,
and their upraised arm is broken.
"Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea
or walked in the recesses of the deep?
the gates of death been shown to you?
Have you seen the gates of the shadow of death ?
you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth?
Tell me, if you know all this.
"What is the way to the abode of light?
And where does darkness reside?
you take them to their places?
Do you know the paths to their dwellings?
you know, for you were already born!
You have lived so many years!
"Have you entered the storehouses of the snow
or seen the storehouses of the hail,
I reserve for times of trouble,
for days of war and battle?
is the way to the place where the lightning is dispersed,
or the place where the east winds are scattered over the earth?
cuts a channel for the torrents of rain,
and a path for the thunderstorm,
water a land where no man lives,
a desert with no one in it,
to satisfy a desolate wasteland
and make it sprout with grass?
the rain have a father?
Who fathers the drops of dew?
whose womb comes the ice?
Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens
the waters become hard as stone,
when the surface of the deep is frozen?
"Can you bind the beautiful Pleiades?
Can you loose the cords of Orion?
you bring forth the constellations in their seasons
or lead out the Bear with its cubs?
33 Do you
know the laws of the heavens?
Can you set up God's dominion over the earth?
"Can you raise your voice to the clouds
and cover yourself with a flood of water?
35 Do you
send the lightning bolts on their way?
Do they report to you, 'Here we are'?
endowed the heart with wisdom
or gave understanding to the mind?
has the wisdom to count the clouds?
Who can tip over the water jars of the heavens
the dust becomes hard
and the clods of earth stick together?
"Do you hunt the prey for the lioness
and satisfy the hunger of the lions
they crouch in their dens
or lie in wait in a thicket?
provides food for the raven
when its young cry out to God
and wander about for lack of food?
1 The LORD said to Job:
"Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct him?
Let him who accuses God answer him!"
1 Then Job replied to the LORD :
know that you can do all things;
no plan of yours can be thwarted.
asked, 'Who is this that obscures my counsel without knowledge?'
Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me to know.
"You said, 'Listen now, and I will speak;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.'
5 My ears
had heard of you
but now my eyes have seen you.
Therefore I despise myself
and repent in dust and ashes."
10 . . . the LORD made him prosperous again and gave him twice as much as he had before. 11 All his brothers and sisters and everyone who had known him before came and ate with him in his house. They comforted and consoled him over all the trouble the LORD had brought upon him, and each one gave him a piece of silver and a gold ring.
12 The LORD blessed the latter part of Job's life more than the first. He had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand donkeys. 13 And he also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 The first daughter he named Jemimah, the second Keziah and the third Keren-Happuch. 15 Nowhere in all the land were there found women as beautiful as Job's daughters, and their father granted them an inheritance along with their brothers.
16 After this, Job lived a hundred and forty years; he saw his children and their children to the fourth generation. 17 And so he died, old and full of years.