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Job’s Second Speech: A Response to Eliphaz

Then[a] Job answered and said,

“If only my vexation could be well weighed,
and my calamity could be lifted up together with it in the balances,
for then it would be heavier than the sand of the seas;
therefore my words have been rash,
for the arrows of Shaddai are in me;
my spirit drinks their poison;
the terrors of God are arrayed against me.
Does the wild ass bray over grass,
or the ox bellow over its fodder?
Can tasteless food be eaten without[b] salt,
or is there taste in the white of a marshmallow plant?
I refused[c] to touch them;
they are like food that will make me ill.[d]
O that[e] my request may come,
and that God may grant my hope,
that[f] God would decide that[g] he would crush me,
that he would let loose his hand and kill me.[h]
10 But[i] it will still be my consolation,
and I would recoil in unrelenting[j] pain,
for I have not denied the words of the Holy One.
11 What is my strength, that I should wait?
And what is my end, that I should hold out?[k]
12 Or is my strength like the strength of stones?
Or is my flesh bronze?
13 Indeed,[l] my help is not in me,
and any success is driven from me.
14 “Loyal love[m] should come for the afflicted from his friend,
even if[n] he forsakes the fear of Shaddai.
15 My companions are treacherous like a torrent-bed;
like a streambed of wadis[o] they flow away,
16 which are growing dark because of ice upon them,
it will pile up snow.
17 In time they dry up, they disappear;
when it is hot, they vanish from their place.
18 The paths of their way wind around;
they go up into the wasteland, and they perish.
19 The caravans of Tema looked;
the traveling merchants of Sheba hope for them.
20 They are disappointed, because they trusted;
they came here[p] and they are confounded.
21 “For now you[q] have become such;[r]
you see terrors, and you fear.
22 Is it because I have said, ‘Give to me,’
or,[s] ‘Offer a bribe for me from your wealth’?
23 or,[t] ‘Save me from the foe’s hand,’
or,[u] ‘Ransom me from the tyrants’ hand’?
24 Teach me, and I myself[v] will be silent;
and make me understand how I have gone astray.
25 How painful are upright words![w]
But[x] what does your reproof[y] reprove?
26 Do you intend to reprove my words[z]
and consider the words of a desperate man as wind?
27 Even over the orphan you would cast the lot,
and you would bargain over your friend.
28 Therefore[aa] be prepared, turn to me,
and I surely will not lie to your face.[ab]
29 Please turn, let no injustice happen;
indeed,[ac] turn, my righteousness is still intact.[ad]
30 Is there injustice on my tongue?
Or can my palate not discern calamity?[ae]


  1. Job 6:1 Hebrew “And”
  2. Job 6:6 Hebrew “from without”
  3. Job 6:7 Literally “My soul/throat refuses”
  4. Job 6:7 Literally “the illness of my bread/food”
  5. Job 6:8 Literally “Who would give”
  6. Job 6:9 Hebrew “and”
  7. Job 6:9 Hebrew “and”
  8. Job 6:9 Literally “he would cut me off”
  9. Job 6:10 Hebrew “And”
  10. Job 6:10 Literally “he/it does not have compassion,” or “he/it does not have pity,” or “he/it does not spare”
  11. Job 6:11 Literally “I should make my self long,” or “I should lengthen my self”
  12. Job 6:13 An interrogative marker plus “if”
  13. Job 6:14 Or “Kindness”
  14. Job 6:14 Hebrew “and”
  15. Job 6:15 A seasonal stream that is often dry
  16. Job 6:20 Literally “up to it”
  17. Job 6:21 Plural throughout the rest of this chapter
  18. Job 6:21 Literally “to it,” or “for it”
  19. Job 6:22 Hebrew “and”
  20. Job 6:23 Hebrew “and”
  21. Job 6:23 Hebrew “And”
  22. Job 6:24 Emphatic personal pronoun
  23. Job 6:25 Literally “words of uprightness”
  24. Job 6:25 Hebrew “And”
  25. Job 6:25 Literally “reproving from you”
  26. Job 6:26 Or “Do you intend to reprove with words”
  27. Job 6:28 Literally “And now,” or “And so then”
  28. Job 6:28 Hebrew “faces”
  29. Job 6:29 Hebrew “and”
  30. Job 6:29 Literally “still my righteousness is in it”
  31. Job 6:30 Or “calamities”