Job 1; Job 2; Job 3; Job 4

1 There once was a man named Job who lived in the land of Uz. He was blameless—a man of complete integrity. He feared God and stayed away from evil. 2 He had seven sons and three daughters. 3 He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 teams of oxen, and 500 female donkeys. He also had many servants. He was, in fact, the richest person in that entire area. 4 Job’s sons would take turns preparing feasts in their homes, and they would also invite their three sisters to celebrate with them. 5 When these celebrations ended—sometimes after several days—Job would purify his children. He would get up early in the morning and offer a burnt offering for each of them. For Job said to himself, “Perhaps my children have sinned and have cursed God in their hearts.” This was Job’s regular practice. 6 One day the members of the heavenly court came to present themselves before the LORD, and the Accuser, Satan, came with them. 7 “Where have you come from?” the LORD asked Satan. Satan answered the LORD, “I have been patrolling the earth, watching everything that’s going on.” 8 Then the LORD asked Satan, “Have you noticed my servant Job? He is the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless—a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil.” 9 Satan replied to the LORD, “Yes, but Job has good reason to fear God. 10 You have always put a wall of protection around him and his home and his property. You have made him prosper in everything he does. Look how rich he is! 11 But reach out and take away everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face!” 12 “All right, you may test him,” the LORD said to Satan. “Do whatever you want with everything he possesses, but don’t harm him physically.” So Satan left the LORD ’s presence. 13 One day when Job’s sons and daughters were feasting at the oldest brother’s house, 14 a messenger arrived at Job’s home with this news: “Your oxen were plowing, with the donkeys feeding beside them, 15 when the Sabeans raided us. They stole all the animals and killed all the farmhands. I am the only one who escaped to tell you.” 16 While he was still speaking, another messenger arrived with this news: “The fire of God has fallen from heaven and burned up your sheep and all the shepherds. I am the only one who escaped to tell you.” 17 While he was still speaking, a third messenger arrived with this news: “Three bands of Chaldean raiders have stolen your camels and killed your servants. I am the only one who escaped to tell you.” 18 While he was still speaking, another messenger arrived with this news: “Your sons and daughters were feasting in their oldest brother’s home. 19 Suddenly, a powerful wind swept in from the wilderness and hit the house on all sides. The house collapsed, and all your children are dead. I am the only one who escaped to tell you.” 20 Job stood up and tore his robe in grief. Then he shaved his head and fell to the ground to worship. 21 He said, “I came naked from my mother’s womb, and I will be naked when I leave. The LORD gave me what I had, and the LORD has taken it away. Praise the name of the LORD !” 22 In all of this, Job did not sin by blaming God.
1 One day the members of the heavenly court came again to present themselves before the LORD, and the Accuser, Satan, came with them. 2 “Where have you come from?” the LORD asked Satan. Satan answered the LORD, “I have been patrolling the earth, watching everything that’s going on.” 3 Then the LORD asked Satan, “Have you noticed my servant Job? He is the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless—a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil. And he has maintained his integrity, even though you urged me to harm him without cause.” 4 Satan replied to the LORD, “Skin for skin! A man will give up everything he has to save his life. 5 But reach out and take away his health, and he will surely curse you to your face!” 6 “All right, do with him as you please,” the LORD said to Satan. “But spare his life.” 7 So Satan left the LORD ’s presence, and he struck Job with terrible boils from head to foot. 8 Job scraped his skin with a piece of broken pottery as he sat among the ashes. 9 His wife said to him, “Are you still trying to maintain your integrity? Curse God and die.” 10 But Job replied, “You talk like a foolish woman. Should we accept only good things from the hand of God and never anything bad?” So in all this, Job said nothing wrong. 11 When three of Job’s friends heard of the tragedy he had suffered, they got together and traveled from their homes to comfort and console him. Their names were Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. 12 When they saw Job from a distance, they scarcely recognized him. Wailing loudly, they tore their robes and threw dust into the air over their heads to show their grief. 13 Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and nights. No one said a word to Job, for they saw that his suffering was too great for words.
1 At last Job spoke, and he cursed the day of his birth. 2 He said: 3 “Let the day of my birth be erased, and the night I was conceived. 4 Let that day be turned to darkness. Let it be lost even to God on high, and let no light shine on it. 5 Let the darkness and utter gloom claim that day for its own. Let a black cloud overshadow it, and let the darkness terrify it. 6 Let that night be blotted off the calendar, never again to be counted among the days of the year, never again to appear among the months. 7 Let that night be childless. Let it have no joy. 8 Let those who are experts at cursing— whose cursing could rouse Leviathan — curse that day. 9 Let its morning stars remain dark. Let it hope for light, but in vain; may it never see the morning light. 10 Curse that day for failing to shut my mother’s womb, for letting me be born to see all this trouble. 11 “Why wasn’t I born dead? Why didn’t I die as I came from the womb? 12 Why was I laid on my mother’s lap? Why did she nurse me at her breasts? 13 Had I died at birth, I would now be at peace. I would be asleep and at rest. 14 I would rest with the world’s kings and prime ministers, whose great buildings now lie in ruins. 15 I would rest with princes, rich in gold, whose palaces were filled with silver. 16 Why wasn’t I buried like a stillborn child, like a baby who never lives to see the light? 17 For in death the wicked cause no trouble, and the weary are at rest. 18 Even captives are at ease in death, with no guards to curse them. 19 Rich and poor are both there, and the slave is free from his master. 20 “Oh, why give light to those in misery, and life to those who are bitter? 21 They long for death, and it won’t come. They search for death more eagerly than for hidden treasure. 22 They’re filled with joy when they finally die, and rejoice when they find the grave. 23 Why is life given to those with no future, those God has surrounded with difficulties? 24 I cannot eat for sighing; my groans pour out like water. 25 What I always feared has happened to me. What I dreaded has come true. 26 I have no peace, no quietness. I have no rest; only trouble comes.”
1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite replied to Job: 2 “Will you be patient and let me say a word? For who could keep from speaking out? 3 “In the past you have encouraged many people; you have strengthened those who were weak. 4 Your words have supported those who were falling; you encouraged those with shaky knees. 5 But now when trouble strikes, you lose heart. You are terrified when it touches you. 6 Doesn’t your reverence for God give you confidence? Doesn’t your life of integrity give you hope? 7 “Stop and think! Do the innocent die? When have the upright been destroyed? 8 My experience shows that those who plant trouble and cultivate evil will harvest the same. 9 A breath from God destroys them. They vanish in a blast of his anger. 10 The lion roars and the wildcat snarls, but the teeth of strong lions will be broken. 11 The fierce lion will starve for lack of prey, and the cubs of the lioness will be scattered. 12 “This truth was given to me in secret, as though whispered in my ear. 13 It came to me in a disturbing vision at night, when people are in a deep sleep. 14 Fear gripped me, and my bones trembled. 15 A spirit swept past my face, and my hair stood on end. 16 The spirit stopped, but I couldn’t see its shape. There was a form before my eyes. In the silence I heard a voice say, 17 ‘Can a mortal be innocent before God? Can anyone be pure before the Creator?’ 18 “If God does not trust his own angels and has charged his messengers with foolishness, 19 how much less will he trust people made of clay! They are made of dust, crushed as easily as a moth. 20 They are alive in the morning but dead by evening, gone forever without a trace. 21 Their tent-cords are pulled and the tent collapses, and they die in ignorance.