Job’s Second Speech: A Response to Eliphaz
1Then Job spoke again:
2“If my misery could be weighed
and my troubles be put on the scales,
3they would outweigh all the sands of the sea.
That is why I spoke impulsively.
4For the Almighty has struck me down with his arrows.
Their poison infects my spirit.
God’s terrors are lined up against me.
5Don’t I have a right to complain?
Don’t wild donkeys bray when they find no grass,
and oxen bellow when they have no food?
6Don’t people complain about unsalted food?
Does anyone want the tasteless white of an egg?*6:6 Or the tasteless juice of the mallow plant?
7My appetite disappears when I look at it;
I gag at the thought of eating it!
8“Oh, that I might have my request,
that God would grant my desire.
9I wish he would crush me.
I wish he would reach out his hand and kill me.
10At least I can take comfort in this:
Despite the pain,
I have not denied the words of the Holy One.
11But I don’t have the strength to endure.
I have nothing to live for.
12Do I have the strength of a stone?
Is my body made of bronze?
13No, I am utterly helpless,
without any chance of success.
14“One should be kind to a fainting friend,
but you accuse me without any fear of the Almighty.*6:14 Or friend, / or he might lose his fear of the Almighty.
15My brothers, you have proved as unreliable as a seasonal brook
that overflows its banks in the spring
16when it is swollen with ice and melting snow.
17But when the hot weather arrives, the water disappears.
The brook vanishes in the heat.
18The caravans turn aside to be refreshed,
but there is nothing to drink, so they die.
19The caravans from Tema search for this water;
the travelers from Sheba hope to find it.
20They count on it but are disappointed.
When they arrive, their hopes are dashed.
21You, too, have given no help.
You have seen my calamity, and you are afraid.
22But why? Have I ever asked you for a gift?
Have I begged for anything of yours for myself?
23Have I asked you to rescue me from my enemies,
or to save me from ruthless people?
24Teach me, and I will keep quiet.
Show me what I have done wrong.
25Honest words can be painful,
but what do your criticisms amount to?
26Do you think your words are convincing
when you disregard my cry of desperation?
27You would even send an orphan into slavery*6:27 Hebrew even gamble over an orphan.
or sell a friend.
28Look at me!
Would I lie to your face?
29Stop assuming my guilt,
for I have done no wrong.
30Do you think I am lying?
Don’t I know the difference between right and wrong?