1 A man named Job lived in Uz. He was a man of integrity: He was decent, he feared God, and he stayed away from evil. 2 He had seven sons and three daughters. 3 He owned 7,000 sheep and goats, 3,000 camels, 1,000 oxen, 500 donkeys, and a large number of servants. He was the most influential person in the Middle East. 4 His sons used to go to each other's homes, where they would have parties. (Each brother took his turn having a party.) They would send someone to invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. 5 When they finished having their parties, Job would send for them in order to cleanse them from sin. He would get up early in the morning and sacrifice burnt offerings for each of them. Job thought, "My children may have sinned and cursed God in their hearts." Job offered sacrifices for them all the time. 6 One day when the sons of God came to stand in front of the LORD, Satan the Accuser came along with them. 7 The LORD asked Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered the LORD, "From wandering all over the earth." 8 The LORD asked Satan, "Have you thought about my servant Job? No one in the world is like him! He is a man of integrity: He is decent, he fears God, and he stays away from evil." 9 Satan answered the LORD, "Haven't you given Job a reason to fear God? 10 Haven't you put a protective fence around him, his home, and everything he has? You have blessed everything he does. His cattle have spread out over the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand, and strike everything he has. I bet he'll curse you to your face." 12 The LORD told Satan, "Everything he has is in your power, but you must not lay a hand on him!" Then Satan left the LORD's presence. 13 One day when Job's sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother's home, 14 a messenger came to Job. He said, "While the oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby, 15 men from Sheba attacked. They took the livestock and massacred the servants. I'm the only one who has escaped to tell you." 16 While he was still speaking, another [messenger] came and said, "A fire from God fell from heaven and completely burned your flocks and servants. I'm the only one who has escaped to tell you." 17 While he was still speaking, another [messenger] came and said, "The Chaldeans formed three companies and made a raid on the camels. They took the camels and massacred the servants. I'm the only one who has escaped to tell you." 18 While he was still speaking, another [messenger] came and said, "Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine at their oldest brother's home 19 when suddenly a great storm swept across the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It fell on the young people, and they died. I'm the only one who has escaped to tell you." 20 Job stood up, tore his robe in grief, and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground and worshiped. 21 He said, "Naked I came from my mother, and naked I will return. The LORD has given, and the LORD has taken away! May the name of the LORD be praised." 22 Through all this Job did not sin or blame God for doing anything wrong.
1 One day when the sons of God came to stand in front of the LORD, Satan the Accuser came along with them. 2 The LORD asked Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered the LORD, "From wandering all over the earth." 3 The LORD asked Satan, "Have you thought about my servant Job? No one in the world is like him! He is a man of integrity: He is decent, he fears God, and he stays away from evil. And he still holds on to his principles. You're trying to provoke me into ruining him for no reason." 4 Satan answered the LORD, "Skin for skin! Certainly, a man will give everything he has for his life. 5 But stretch out your hand, and strike his flesh and bones. I bet he'll curse you to your face." 6 The LORD told Satan, "He is in your power, but you must spare his life!" 7 Satan left the LORD's presence and struck Job with painful boils from the soles of his feet to the top of his head. 8 Job took a piece of broken pottery to scratch himself as he sat in the ashes. 9 His wife asked him, "Are you still holding on to your principles? Curse God and die!" 10 He said to her, "You're talking like a godless fool. We accept the good that God gives us. Shouldn't we also accept the bad?" Through all this Job's lips did not utter one sinful word. 11 When Job's three friends heard about all the terrible things that had happened to him, each of them came from his home--Eliphaz of Teman, Bildad of Shuah, Zophar of Naama. They had agreed they would go together to sympathize with Job and comfort him. 12 When they saw him from a distance, they didn't even recognize him. They cried out loud and wept, and each of them tore his own clothes in grief. They threw dust on their heads. 13 Then they sat down on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him because they saw that he was in such great pain.
1 After all this, Job [finally] opened his mouth and cursed the day he was born. 2 Job said, 3 "Scratch out the day I was born and the night that said, 'A boy has been conceived!' 4 "That day-- let it be pitch-black. Let God above not [even] care about it. Let no light shine on it. 5 Let the darkness and long shadows claim it as their own. Let a dark cloud hang over it. Let the gloom terrify it. 6 "That night-- let the blackness take it away. Let it not be included in the days of the year or be numbered among the months. 7 Let that night be empty. Let no joyful singing be heard in it. 8 Let those who curse the day (those who know how to wake up Leviathan ) curse that night. 9 Let its stars turn dark before dawn. Let it hope for light and receive none. Let it not see the first light of dawn 10 because it did not shut the doors of the womb [from which I came] or hide my eyes from trouble. 11 "Why didn't I die as soon as I was born and breathe my last breath when I came out of the womb? 12 Why did knees welcome me? Why did breasts let me nurse? 13 Instead of being alive, I would now be quietly lying down. I would now be sleeping peacefully. 14 I would be with the kings and the counselors of the world who built for themselves [what are now] ruins. 15 I would be with princes who had gold, who filled their homes with silver. 16 I would be buried like a stillborn baby. I would not exist. I would be like infants who never saw the light. 17 There the wicked stop their raging. There the weary are able to rest. 18 There the captives have no troubles at all. There they do not hear the shouting of the slave driver. 19 There [you find] both the unimportant and important people. There the slave is free from his master. 20 "Why give light to one in misery and life to those who find it so bitter, 21 to those who long for death but it never comes-- though they dig for it more than for buried treasure? 22 They are ecstatic, delighted to find the grave. 23 Why give light to those whose paths have been hidden, to those whom God has fenced in? 24 "When my food is in front of me, I sigh. I pour out my groaning like water. 25 What I fear most overtakes me. What I dread happens to me. 26 I have no peace! I have no quiet! I have no rest! And trouble keeps coming!"
1 Then Eliphaz from Teman replied [to Job], 2 "If someone tries to talk to you, will you become impatient? But who can keep from talking? 3 Certainly, you have instructed many people: When hands were weak, you made them strong. 4 When someone stumbled, you lifted him up with your words. When knees were weak, you gave them strength. 5 But trouble comes to you, and you're impatient. It touches you, and you panic. 6 Doesn't your fear of God give you confidence and your lifetime of integrity give you hope? 7 "Now think about this: Which innocent person [ever] died [an untimely death]? Find me a decent person who has been destroyed. 8 Whenever I saw those who plowed wickedness and planted misery, they gathered its harvest. 9 God destroys them with his breath and kills them with a blast of his anger. 10 Though the roar of the lion and the growl of the ferocious lion [is loud], the young lions have had their teeth knocked out. 11 The old lions die without any prey [to eat], and the cubs of the lioness are scattered. 12 "I was told something secretly and heard something whispered in my ear. 13 With disturbing thoughts from visions in the night, when deep sleep falls on people, 14 fear and trembling came over me, and all my bones shook. 15 A spirit passed in front of me. It made my hair stand on end. 16 Something stood there. I couldn't tell what it was. A vague image was in front of my eyes. I heard a soft voice: 17 'Can [any] mortal be righteous to God? Can [any] human being be pure to his maker?' 18 "You see, God doesn't trust his own servants, and he accuses his angels of making mistakes. 19 How much more will he accuse those who live in clay houses that have their foundation in the dust. Those houses can be crushed quicker than a moth! 20 From morning to evening, they are shattered. They will disappear forever without anyone paying attention. 21 Haven't the ropes of their tent been loosened? Won't they die without wisdom?
1 "Cry out! Is there anyone to answer you? To which of the holy ones will you turn? 2 Certainly, anger kills a stubborn fool, and jealousy murders a gullible person. 3 I have seen a stubborn fool take root, but I quickly cursed his house. 4 His children are far from help. They are crushed at the city gate, and no one is there to rescue them. 5 What a stubborn fool gathers, hungry people eat. They take it even from among the thorns, and thirsty people pant after his wealth. 6 Certainly, sorrow doesn't come from the soil, and trouble doesn't sprout from the ground. 7 But a person is born for trouble as surely as sparks fly up [from a fire]. 8 "But I would seek God's help and present my case to him. 9 He does great things that [we] cannot understand and miracles that [we] cannot count. 10 He gives rain to the earth and sends water to the fields. 11 He places lowly people up high. He lifts those who mourn to safety. 12 He keeps shrewd people from carrying out their plans so that they cannot do anything successfully. 13 He catches the wise with their own tricks. The plans of schemers prove to be hasty. 14 In the daytime they meet darkness and grope in the sunlight as if it were night. 15 "But he saves [other people] from their slander and the needy from the power of the mighty. 16 Then the poor have hope while wrongdoing shuts its mouth. 17 "Blessed is the person whom God corrects. That person should not despise discipline from the Almighty. 18 God injures, but he bandages. He beats you up, but his hands make you well. 19 He will keep you safe from six troubles, and when the seventh one comes, no harm will touch you: 20 "In famine he will save you from death, and in war he will save you from the sword. 21 "When the tongue lashes out, you will be safe, and you will not be afraid of destruction when it comes. 22 "You will be able to laugh at destruction and starvation, so do not be afraid of wild animals on the earth. 23 "You will have a binding agreement with the stones in the field, and wild animals will be at peace with you. 24 "You will know peace in your tent. You will inspect your house and find nothing missing. 25 "You will find that your children are many and your descendants are like the grass of the earth. 26 "You will come to your grave at a ripe old age like a stack of hay in the right season. 27 "We have studied all of this thoroughly! This is the way it is. Listen to it, and learn it for yourself."