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Job 29 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

VI. Job’s Final Summary of His Cause

Chapter 29

[a]Job took up his theme again and said:

Oh, that I were as in the months past,
    as in the days when God watched over me:
While he kept his lamp shining above my head,
    and by his light I walked through darkness;
As I was in my flourishing days,
    when God sheltered my tent;
When the Almighty was still with me,
    and my children were round about me;
When my footsteps were bathed in cream,
    and the rock flowed with streams of oil.[b]
Whenever I went out to the gate of the city
    and took my seat in the square,
The young men saw me and withdrew,
    and the elders rose up and stood;
Officials refrained from speaking
    and covered their mouths with their hands;
10 The voice of the princes was silenced,
    and their tongues stuck to the roofs of their mouths.
11 The ear that heard blessed me;
    the eye that saw acclaimed me.
12 For I rescued the poor who cried out for help,
    the orphans, and the unassisted;
13 The blessing of those in extremity came upon me,
    and the heart of the widow I made joyful.
14 I wore my righteousness like a garment;
    justice was my robe and my turban.
15 I was eyes to the blind,
    and feet to the lame was I.
16 I was a father to the poor;
    the complaint of the stranger I pursued,
17 And I broke the jaws of the wicked man;
    from his teeth I forced the prey.
18 I said: “In my own nest I shall grow old;
    I shall multiply years like the phoenix.[c]
19 My root is spread out to the waters;
    the dew rests by night on my branches.
20 My glory is fresh within me,
    and my bow is renewed in my hand!”
21 For me they listened and waited;
    they were silent for my counsel.
22 Once I spoke, they said no more,
    but received my pronouncement drop by drop.
23 They waited for me as for the rain;
    they drank in my words like the spring rains.
24 When I smiled on them they could not believe it;
    they would not let the light of my face be dimmed.
25 I decided their course and sat at their head,
    I lived like a king among the troops,
    like one who comforts mourners.

Footnotes:

  1. 29:1 This chapter begins Job’s soliloquy, which will end in 31:40. He describes in florid and exaggerated terms his former lifestyle with all its blessings, a deliberate contrast to his current plight, which will be further described in chap. 30.
  2. 29:6 Hyperbole to express abundance; see note on 20:17.
  3. 29:18 Phoenix: a legendary bird which, after several centuries of life, consumed itself in fire, then rose from its ashes in youthful freshness.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Job 29 New International Version (NIV)

Job’s Final Defense

29 Job continued his discourse:

“How I long for the months gone by,
    for the days when God watched over me,
when his lamp shone on my head
    and by his light I walked through darkness!
Oh, for the days when I was in my prime,
    when God’s intimate friendship blessed my house,
when the Almighty was still with me
    and my children were around me,
when my path was drenched with cream
    and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil.

“When I went to the gate of the city
    and took my seat in the public square,
the young men saw me and stepped aside
    and the old men rose to their feet;
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 them.
13 The one 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 not fade;
    the bow will be ever new in my hand.’

21 “People 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.[a]
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.

Footnotes:

  1. Job 29:24 The meaning of the Hebrew for this clause is uncertain.
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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