Job’s Opening Speech

After this, Job began to speak and cursed the day he was born. He said:

May the day I was born perish,
and the night when they said,
“A boy is conceived.”(A)
If only that day had turned to darkness!
May God above not care about it,
or light shine on it.
May darkness and gloom(B) reclaim it,
and a cloud settle over it.
May an eclipse of the sun[a] terrify it.
If only darkness had taken that night away!
May it not appear[b] among the days of the year
or be listed in the calendar.[c]
Yes, may that night be barren;
may no joyful shout(C) be heard in it.
Let those who curse certain days
cast a spell(D) on it,
those who are skilled in rousing Leviathan.(E)
May its morning stars grow dark.
May it wait for daylight but have none;
may it not see the breaking[d] of dawn.
10 For that night did not shut
the doors of my mother’s womb,
and hide sorrow from my eyes.

11 Why was I not stillborn;
why didn’t I die as I came from the womb?(F)
12 Why did the knees receive me,
and why were there breasts for me to nurse?(G)
13 Now I would certainly be lying down in peace;
I would be asleep.(H)
Then I would be at rest(I)
14 with the kings and counselors(J) of the earth,
who rebuilt ruined cities for themselves,
15 or with princes who had gold,
who filled their houses(K) with silver.
16 Or why was I not hidden like a miscarried child,(L)
like infants who never see daylight?
17 There the wicked(M) cease to make trouble,
and there the weary find rest.
18 The captives are completely at ease;(N)
they do not hear the voice of their oppressor.(O)
19 Both small and great are there,
and the slave is set free from his master.(P)

20 Why is light given to one burdened with grief,
and life to those whose existence is bitter,(Q)
21 who wait for death,(R) but it does not come,
and search for it more than for hidden treasure,
22 who are filled with much joy
and are glad when they reach the grave?(S)
23 Why is life given to a man whose path is hidden,(T)
whom God has hedged in?
24 I sigh when food(U) is put before me,[e]
and my groans pour out like water.(V)
25 For the thing I feared has overtaken me,
and what I dreaded has happened to me.(W)
26 I cannot relax or be still;
I have no rest,(X) for trouble comes.


  1. Job 3:5 Lit May a darkening of daylight
  2. Job 3:6 LXX, Syr, Tg, Vg; MT reads rejoice
  3. Job 3:6 Lit or enter the number of months
  4. Job 3:9 Lit the eyelids
  5. Job 3:24 Or My sighing serves as my food

Job Speaks

After this, Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth.(A) He said:

“May the day of my birth perish,
    and the night that said, ‘A boy is conceived!’(B)
That day—may it turn to darkness;
    may God above not care about it;
    may no light shine on it.
May gloom and utter darkness(C) claim it once more;
    may a cloud settle over it;
    may blackness overwhelm it.
That night—may thick darkness(D) seize it;
    may it not be included among the days of the year
    nor be entered in any of the months.
May that night be barren;
    may no shout of joy(E) be heard in it.
May those who curse days[a] curse that day,(F)
    those who are ready to rouse Leviathan.(G)
May its morning stars become dark;
    may it wait for daylight in vain
    and not see the first rays of dawn,(H)
10 for it did not shut the doors of the womb on me
    to hide trouble from my eyes.

11 “Why did I not perish at birth,
    and die as I came from the womb?(I)
12 Why were there knees to receive me(J)
    and breasts that I might be nursed?
13 For now I would be lying down(K) in peace;
    I would be asleep and at rest(L)
14 with kings and rulers of the earth,(M)
    who built for themselves places now lying in ruins,(N)
15 with princes(O) who had gold,
    who filled their houses with silver.(P)
16 Or why was I not hidden away in the ground like a stillborn child,(Q)
    like an infant who never saw the light of day?(R)
17 There the wicked cease from turmoil,(S)
    and there the weary are at rest.(T)
18 Captives(U) also enjoy their ease;
    they no longer hear the slave driver’s(V) shout.(W)
19 The small and the great are there,(X)
    and the slaves are freed from their owners.

20 “Why is light given to those in misery,
    and life to the bitter of soul,(Y)
21 to those who long for death that does not come,(Z)
    who search for it more than for hidden treasure,(AA)
22 who are filled with gladness
    and rejoice when they reach the grave?(AB)
23 Why is life given to a man
    whose way is hidden,(AC)
    whom God has hedged in?(AD)
24 For sighing(AE) has become my daily food;(AF)
    my groans(AG) pour out like water.(AH)
25 What I feared has come upon me;
    what I dreaded(AI) has happened to me.(AJ)
26 I have no peace,(AK) no quietness;
    I have no rest,(AL) but only turmoil.”(AM)


  1. Job 3:8 Or curse the sea