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Job Speaks: Admit That God Is Mistreating Me

19 Then Job replied to his friends,

“How long will you torment me
    and depress me with words?
You have insulted me ten times now.
    You’re not even ashamed of mistreating me.
Even if it were true that I’ve made a mistake without realizing it,
    my mistake would affect only me.
If you are trying to make yourselves look better than me
    by using my disgrace as an argument against me,
then I want you to know that Eloah has wronged me
    and surrounded me with his net.
Indeed, I cry, ‘Help! I’m being attacked!’ but I get no response.
    I call for help, but there is no justice.

What God Has Done to Me

Eloah has blocked my path so that I can’t go on.
    He has made my paths dark.
He has stripped me of my honor.
    He has taken the crown off my head.
10 He beats me down on every side until I’m gone.
    He uproots my hope like a tree.
11 He is very angry at me.
    He considers me to be his enemy.
12 His troops assemble against me.
    They build a ramp to attack me
        and camp around my tent.

13 “My brothers stay far away from me.
    My friends are complete strangers to me.
14 My relatives and my closest friends have stopped coming.
    My house guests have forgotten me.
15 My female slaves consider me to be a stranger.
    I am like a foreigner to them.
16 I call my slave, but he doesn’t answer, though I beg him.
17 My breath offends my wife.
    I stink to my own children.
18 Even young children despise me.
    If I stand up, they make fun of me.
19 All my closest friends are disgusted with me.
    Those I love have turned against me.
20 I am skin and bones,
    and I have escaped only by the skin of my teeth.

21 “Have pity on me, my friends!
    Have pity on me because Eloah’s hand has struck me down.
22 Why do you pursue me as El does?
    Why are you never satisfied with my flesh?

Job’s Confidence in His Defender

23 “I wish now my words were written.
    I wish they were inscribed on a scroll.
24 I wish they were forever engraved on a rock
    with an iron stylus and lead.[a]
25 But I know that my Go’el lives,
    and afterwards, he will rise on the earth.
26 Even after my skin has been stripped off my body,
    I will see Eloah in my own flesh.
27 I will see him with my own eyes,
    not with someone else’s.
    My heart fails inside me!

Job Warns His Friends

28 “You say,
    ‘We will persecute him!
    The root of the problem is found in him.’
29 Fear death,
    because your anger is punishable by death.
        Then you will know there is a judge.”


  1. Job 19:24 The order of the lines has been reversed because the English equivalent is difficult.