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Job Replies: My Complaint Is Just

Then Job answered:

‘O that my vexation were weighed,
    and all my calamity laid in the balances!
For then it would be heavier than the sand of the sea;
    therefore my words have been rash.
For the arrows of the Almighty[a] are in me;
    my spirit drinks their poison;
    the terrors of God are arrayed against me.
Does the wild ass bray over its grass,
    or the ox low over its fodder?
Can that which is tasteless be eaten without salt,
    or is there any flavour in the juice of mallows?[b]
My appetite refuses to touch them;
    they are like food that is loathsome to me.[c]

‘O that I might have my request,
    and that God would grant my desire;
that it would please God to crush me,
    that he would let loose his hand and cut me off!
10 This would be my consolation;
    I would even exult[d] in unrelenting 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 be patient?
12 Is my strength the strength of stones,
    or is my flesh bronze?
13 In truth I have no help in me,
    and any resource is driven from me.

14 ‘Those who withhold[e] kindness from a friend
    forsake the fear of the Almighty.[f]
15 My companions are treacherous like a torrent-bed,
    like freshets that pass away,
16 that run dark with ice,
    turbid with melting snow.
17 In time of heat they disappear;
    when it is hot, they vanish from their place.
18 The caravans turn aside from their course;
    they go up into the waste, and perish.
19 The caravans of Tema look,
    the travellers of Sheba hope.
20 They are disappointed because they were confident;
    they come there and are confounded.
21 Such you have now become to me;[g]
    you see my calamity, and are afraid.
22 Have I said, “Make me a gift”?
    Or, “From your wealth offer a bribe for me”?
23 Or, “Save me from an opponent’s hand”?
    Or, “Ransom me from the hand of oppressors”?

24 ‘Teach me, and I will be silent;
    make me understand how I have gone wrong.
25 How forceful are honest words!
    But your reproof, what does it reprove?
26 Do you think that you can reprove words,
    as if the speech of the desperate were wind?
27 You would even cast lots over the orphan,
    and bargain over your friend.

28 ‘But now, be pleased to look at me;
    for I will not lie to your face.
29 Turn, I pray, let no wrong be done.
    Turn now, my vindication is at stake.
30 Is there any wrong on my tongue?
    Cannot my taste discern calamity?

Footnotes

  1. Job 6:4 Traditional rendering of Heb Shaddai
  2. Job 6:6 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  3. Job 6:7 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  4. Job 6:10 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  5. Job 6:14 Syr Vg Compare Tg: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  6. Job 6:14 Traditional rendering of Heb Shaddai
  7. Job 6:21 Cn Compare Gk Syr: Meaning of Heb uncertain

Job

Then Job replied:

“If only my anguish could be weighed
    and all my misery be placed on the scales!(A)
It would surely outweigh the sand(B) of the seas—
    no wonder my words have been impetuous.(C)
The arrows(D) of the Almighty(E) are in me,(F)
    my spirit drinks(G) in their poison;(H)
    God’s terrors(I) are marshaled against me.(J)
Does a wild donkey(K) bray(L) when it has grass,
    or an ox bellow when it has fodder?(M)
Is tasteless food eaten without salt,
    or is there flavor in the sap of the mallow[a]?(N)
I refuse to touch it;
    such food makes me ill.(O)

“Oh, that I might have my request,
    that God would grant what I hope for,(P)
that God would be willing to crush(Q) me,
    to let loose his hand and cut off my life!(R)
10 Then I would still have this consolation(S)
    my joy in unrelenting pain(T)
    that I had not denied the words(U) of the Holy One.(V)

11 “What strength do I have, that I should still hope?
    What prospects, that I should be patient?(W)
12 Do I have the strength of stone?
    Is my flesh bronze?(X)
13 Do I have any power to help myself,(Y)
    now that success has been driven from me?

14 “Anyone who withholds kindness from a friend(Z)
    forsakes the fear of the Almighty.(AA)
15 But my brothers are as undependable as intermittent streams,(AB)
    as the streams that overflow
16 when darkened by thawing ice
    and swollen with melting snow,(AC)
17 but that stop flowing in the dry season,
    and in the heat(AD) vanish from their channels.
18 Caravans turn aside from their routes;
    they go off into the wasteland and perish.
19 The caravans of Tema(AE) look for water,
    the traveling merchants of Sheba(AF) look in hope.
20 They are distressed, because they had been confident;
    they arrive there, only to be disappointed.(AG)
21 Now you too have proved to be of no help;
    you see something dreadful and are afraid.(AH)
22 Have I ever said, ‘Give something on my behalf,
    pay a ransom(AI) for me from your wealth,(AJ)
23 deliver me from the hand of the enemy,
    rescue me from the clutches of the ruthless’?(AK)

24 “Teach me, and I will be quiet;(AL)
    show me where I have been wrong.(AM)
25 How painful are honest words!(AN)
    But what do your arguments prove?
26 Do you mean to correct what I say,
    and treat my desperate words as wind?(AO)
27 You would even cast lots(AP) for the fatherless(AQ)
    and barter away your friend.

28 “But now be so kind as to look at me.
    Would I lie to your face?(AR)
29 Relent, do not be unjust;(AS)
    reconsider, for my integrity(AT) is at stake.[b](AU)
30 Is there any wickedness on my lips?(AV)
    Can my mouth not discern(AW) malice?

Footnotes

  1. Job 6:6 The meaning of the Hebrew for this phrase is uncertain.
  2. Job 6:29 Or my righteousness still stands

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