1 Moreover Job continued his parable, and said,
2 Oh that I were as in months past, as in the days when God preserved me;
3 When his candle shined upon my head, and when by his light I walked through darkness;
4 As I was in the days of my youth, when the secret of God was upon my tabernacle;
5 When the Almighty was yet with me, when my children were about me;
6 When I washed my steps with butter, and the rock poured me out rivers of oil;
7 When I went out to the gate through the city, when I prepared my seat in the street!
8 The young men saw me, and hid themselves: and the aged arose, and stood up.
9 The princes refrained talking, and laid their hand on their mouth.
10 The nobles held their peace, and their tongue cleaved to the roof of their mouth.
11 When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; and when the eye saw me, it gave witness to me:
12 Because I delivered the poor that cried, and the fatherless, and him that had none to help him.
13 The blessing of him that was ready to perish came upon me: and I caused the widow's heart to sing for joy.
14 I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.
15 I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame.
16 I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out.
17 And I brake the jaws of the wicked, and plucked the spoil out of his teeth.
18 Then I said, I shall die in my nest, and I shall multiply my days as the sand.
19 My root was spread out by the waters, and the dew lay all night upon my branch.
20 My glory was fresh in me, and my bow was renewed in my hand.
21 Unto me men gave ear, and waited, and kept silence at my counsel.
22 After my words they spake not again; and my speech dropped upon them.
23 And they waited for me as for the rain; and they opened their mouth wide as for the latter rain.
24 If I laughed on them, they believed it not; and the light of my countenance they cast not down.
25 I chose out their way, and sat chief, and dwelt as a king in the army, as one that comforteth the mourners.
1 But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to have set with the dogs of my flock.
2 Yea, whereto might the strength of their hands profit me, in whom old age was perished?
3 For want and famine they were solitary; fleeing into the wilderness in former time desolate and waste.
4 Who cut up mallows by the bushes, and juniper roots for their meat.
5 They were driven forth from among men, (they cried after them as after a thief;)
6 To dwell in the cliffs of the valleys, in caves of the earth, and in the rocks.
7 Among the bushes they brayed; under the nettles they were gathered together.
8 They were children of fools, yea, children of base men: they were viler than the earth.
9 And now am I their song, yea, I am their byword.
10 They abhor me, they flee far from me, and spare not to spit in my face.
11 Because he hath loosed my cord, and afflicted me, they have also let loose the bridle before me.
12 Upon my right hand rise the youth; they push away my feet, and they raise up against me the ways of their destruction.
13 They mar my path, they set forward my calamity, they have no helper.
14 They came upon me as a wide breaking in of waters: in the desolation they rolled themselves upon me.
15 Terrors are turned upon me: they pursue my soul as the wind: and my welfare passeth away as a cloud.
16 And now my soul is poured out upon me; the days of affliction have taken hold upon me.
17 My bones are pierced in me in the night season: and my sinews take no rest.
18 By the great force of my disease is my garment changed: it bindeth me about as the collar of my coat.
19 He hath cast me into the mire, and I am become like dust and ashes.
20 I cry unto thee, and thou dost not hear me: I stand up, and thou regardest me not.
21 Thou art become cruel to me: with thy strong hand thou opposest thyself against me.
22 Thou liftest me up to the wind; thou causest me to ride upon it, and dissolvest my substance.
23 For I know that thou wilt bring me to death, and to the house appointed for all living.
24 Howbeit he will not stretch out his hand to the grave, though they cry in his destruction.
25 Did not I weep for him that was in trouble? was not my soul grieved for the poor?
26 When I looked for good, then evil came unto me: and when I waited for light, there came darkness.
27 My bowels boiled, and rested not: the days of affliction prevented me.
28 I went mourning without the sun: I stood up, and I cried in the congregation.
29 I am a brother to dragons, and a companion to owls.
30 My skin is black upon me, and my bones are burned with heat.
31 My harp also is turned to mourning, and my organ into the voice of them that weep.
1 I made a covenant with mine eyes; why then should I think upon a maid?
2 For what portion of God is there from above? and what inheritance of the Almighty from on high?
3 Is not destruction to the wicked? and a strange punishment to the workers of iniquity?
4 Doth not he see my ways, and count all my steps?
5 If I have walked with vanity, or if my foot hath hasted to deceit;
6 Let me be weighed in an even balance, that God may know mine integrity.
7 If my step hath turned out of the way, and mine heart walked after mine eyes, and if any blot hath cleaved to mine hands;
8 Then let me sow, and let another eat; yea, let my offspring be rooted out.
9 If mine heart have been deceived by a woman, or if I have laid wait at my neighbour's door;
10 Then let my wife grind unto another, and let others bow down upon her.
11 For this is an heinous crime; yea, it is an iniquity to be punished by the judges.
12 For it is a fire that consumeth to destruction, and would root out all mine increase.
13 If I did despise the cause of my manservant or of my maidservant, when they contended with me;
14 What then shall I do when God riseth up? and when he visiteth, what shall I answer him?
15 Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion us in the womb?
16 If I have withheld the poor from their desire, or have caused the eyes of the widow to fail;
17 Or have eaten my morsel myself alone, and the fatherless hath not eaten thereof;
18 (For from my youth he was brought up with me, as with a father, and I have guided her from my mother's womb;)
19 If I have seen any perish for want of clothing, or any poor without covering;
20 If his loins have not blessed me, and if he were not warmed with the fleece of my sheep;
21 If I have lifted up my hand against the fatherless, when I saw my help in the gate:
22 Then let mine arm fall from my shoulder blade, and mine arm be broken from the bone.
23 For destruction from God was a terror to me, and by reason of his highness I could not endure.
24 If I have made gold my hope, or have said to the fine gold, Thou art my confidence;
25 If I rejoiced because my wealth was great, and because mine hand had gotten much;
26 If I beheld the sun when it shined, or the moon walking in brightness;
27 And my heart hath been secretly enticed, or my mouth hath kissed my hand:
28 This also were an iniquity to be punished by the judge: for I should have denied the God that is above.
29 If I rejoiced at the destruction of him that hated me, or lifted up myself when evil found him:
30 Neither have I suffered my mouth to sin by wishing a curse to his soul.
31 If the men of my tabernacle said not, Oh that we had of his flesh! we cannot be satisfied.
32 The stranger did not lodge in the street: but I opened my doors to the traveller.
33 If I covered my transgressions as Adam, by hiding mine iniquity in my bosom:
34 Did I fear a great multitude, or did the contempt of families terrify me, that I kept silence, and went not out of the door?
35 Oh that one would hear me! behold, my desire is, that the Almighty would answer me, and that mine adversary had written a book.
36 Surely I would take it upon my shoulder, and bind it as a crown to me.
37 I would declare unto him the number of my steps; as a prince would I go near unto him.
38 If my land cry against me, or that the furrows likewise thereof complain;
39 If I have eaten the fruits thereof without money, or have caused the owners thereof to lose their life:
40 Let thistles grow instead of wheat, and cockle instead of barley. The words of Job are ended.
1 Job continued his discourse:
2 "How I long for the months gone by, for the days when God watched over me,
3 when his lamp shone upon my head and by his light I walked through darkness!
4 Oh, for the days when I was in my prime, when God's intimate friendship blessed my house,
5 when the Almighty was still with me and my children were around me,
6 when my path was drenched with cream and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil.
7 "When I went to the gate of the city and took my seat in the public square,
8 the young men saw me and stepped aside and the old men rose to their feet;
9 the chief men refrained from speaking and covered their mouths with their hands;
10 the voices of the nobles were hushed, and their tongues stuck to the roof of their mouths.
11 Whoever heard me spoke well of me, and those who saw me commended me,
12 because I rescued the poor who cried for help, and the fatherless who had none to assist him.
13 The man who was dying blessed me; I made the widow's heart sing.
14 I put on righteousness as my clothing; justice was my robe and my turban.
15 I was eyes to the blind and feet to the lame.
16 I was a father to the needy; I took up the case of the stranger.
17 I broke the fangs of the wicked and snatched the victims from their teeth.
18 "I thought, 'I will die in my own house, my days as numerous as the grains of sand.
19 My roots will reach to the water, and the dew will lie all night on my branches.
20 My glory will remain fresh in me, the bow ever new in my hand.'
21 "Men listened to me expectantly, waiting in silence for my counsel.
22 After I had spoken, they spoke no more; my words fell gently on their ears.
23 They waited for me as for showers and drank in my words as the spring rain.
24 When I smiled at them, they scarcely believed it; the light of my face was precious to them.
25 I chose the way for them and sat as their chief; I dwelt as a king among his troops; I was like one who comforts mourners.
1 "But now they mock me, men younger than I, whose fathers I would have disdained to put with my sheep dogs.
2 Of what use was the strength of their hands to me, since their vigor had gone from them?
3 Haggard from want and hunger, they roamed the parched land in desolate wastelands at night.
4 In the brush they gathered salt herbs, and their food was the root of the broom tree.
5 They were banished from their fellow men, shouted at as if they were thieves.
6 They were forced to live in the dry stream beds, among the rocks and in holes in the ground.
7 They brayed among the bushes and huddled in the undergrowth.
8 A base and nameless brood, they were driven out of the land.
9 "And now their sons mock me in song; I have become a byword among them.
10 They detest me and keep their distance; they do not hesitate to spit in my face.
11 Now that God has unstrung my bow and afflicted me, they throw off restraint in my presence.
12 On my right the tribe attacks; they lay snares for my feet, they build their siege ramps against me.
13 They break up my road; they succeed in destroying me-- without anyone's helping them.
14 They advance as through a gaping breach; amid the ruins they come rolling in.
15 Terrors overwhelm me; my dignity is driven away as by the wind, my safety vanishes like a cloud.
16 "And now my life ebbs away; days of suffering grip me.
17 Night pierces my bones; my gnawing pains never rest.
18 In his great power becomes like clothing to me; he binds me like the neck of my garment.
19 He throws me into the mud, and I am reduced to dust and ashes.
20 "I cry out to you, O God, but you do not answer; I stand up, but you merely look at me.
21 You turn on me ruthlessly; with the might of your hand you attack me.
22 You 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.
24 "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?
26 Yet when I hoped for good, evil came; when I looked for light, then came darkness.
27 The 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.
30 My skin grows black and peels; my body burns with fever.
31 My harp is tuned to mourning, and my flute to the sound of wailing.
1 "I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.
2 For what is man's lot from God above, his heritage from the Almighty on high?
3 Is it not ruin for the wicked, disaster for those who do wrong?
4 Does he not see my ways and count my every step?
5 "If I have walked in falsehood or my foot has hurried after deceit--
6 let God weigh me in honest scales and he will know that I am blameless--
7 if my steps have turned from the path, if my heart has been led by my eyes, or if my hands have been defiled,
8 then may others eat what I have sown, and may my crops be uprooted.
9 "If my heart has been enticed by a woman, or if I have lurked at my neighbor's door,
10 then may my wife grind another man's grain, and may other men sleep with her.
11 For that would have been shameful, a sin to be judged.
12 It is a fire that burns to Destruction; it would have uprooted my harvest.
13 "If I have denied justice to my menservants and maidservants when they had a grievance against me,
14 what will I do when God confronts me? What will I answer when called to account?
15 Did not he who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same one form us both within our mothers?
16 "If I have denied the desires of the poor or let the eyes of the widow grow weary,
17 if I have kept my bread to myself, not sharing it with the fatherless--
18 but from my youth I reared him as would a father, and from my birth I guided the widow--
19 if I have seen anyone perishing for lack of clothing, or a needy man without a garment,
20 and his heart did not bless me for warming him with the fleece from my sheep,
21 if I have raised my hand against the fatherless, knowing that I had influence in court,
22 then let my arm fall from the shoulder, let it be broken off at the joint.
23 For I dreaded destruction from God, and for fear of his splendor I could not do such things.
24 "If I have put my trust in gold or said to pure gold, 'You are my security,'
25 if I have rejoiced over my great wealth, the fortune my hands had gained,
26 if I have regarded the sun in its radiance or the moon moving in splendor,
27 so that my heart was secretly enticed and my hand offered them a kiss of homage,
28 then these also would be sins to be judged, for I would have been unfaithful to God on high.
29 "If I have rejoiced at my enemy's misfortune or gloated over the trouble that came to him--
30 I have not allowed my mouth to sin by invoking a curse against his life--
31 if the men of my household have never said, 'Who has not had his fill of Job's meat?'--
32 but no stranger had to spend the night in the street, for my door was always open to the traveler--
33 if I have concealed my sin as men do, by hiding my guilt in my heart
34 because I so feared the crowd and so dreaded the contempt of the clans that I kept silent and would not go outside
35 ("Oh, that I had someone to hear me! I sign now my defense-- let the Almighty answer me; let my accuser put his indictment in writing.
36 Surely I would wear it on my shoulder, I would put it on like a crown.
37 I would give him an account of my every step; like a prince I would approach him.)--
38 "if my land cries out against me and all its furrows are wet with tears,
39 if I have devoured its yield without payment or broken the spirit of its tenants,
40 then let briers come up instead of wheat and weeds instead of barley." The words of Job are ended.