Job Curses the Day He Was Born
1 Then Job opened his mouth and cursed the day he was born. 2 He said,
3 “I wish the day I was born would be lost forever.
I wish the night they said, ‘It’s a boy!’ had never happened.
4 I wish that day had remained dark.
I wish God above had forgotten that day
and not let any light shine on it.
5 I wish that bitter day had remained as dark as death,
covered with the darkest clouds.
6 I wish the darkness had carried away that night,
that it was left off the calendar
and not included in any of the months.
7 I wish that night had produced nothing
and no happy shouts had been heard.
8 Some magicians think they can wake Leviathan.* Leviathan Here, this is probably a giant sea monster. Some people thought magicians were able to make it “swallow the sun,” that is, cause an eclipse.
So let them say their curses and curse the day I was born.
9 Let that day’s morning star be dark.
Let that night wait for a morning that never comes.
I wish it had never seen the first rays of sunlight.
10 I wish it had stopped me from being born
and kept me from seeing all these troubles.
11 Why didn’t I die when I was born?
Why didn’t I die as I came from my mother’s womb?
12 Why did my mother hold me on her knees?
Why did her breasts feed me?
13 If I had died when I was born,
I would be at peace now.
I wish I were asleep and at rest
14 with the kings and their advisors
who built palaces that are now in ruins.
15 I wish I were buried with rulers
who filled their graves with gold and silver.
16 Why wasn’t I a child who died at birth
and was put in the ground?
I wish I had been buried like a baby
who never saw the light of day.
17 There the wicked stop causing trouble,
and the weary find rest.
18 Even prisoners find relief there;
they no longer hear their guards shouting at them.
19 Everyone—from the greatest to the least important—will be there,
and even the slave is free from his master.
20 “Why must a suffering person continue to live?
Why let anyone live such a bitter life?
21 Such people want to die, but death does not come.
They search for death more than for hidden treasure.
22 They would be happy to find their grave.
They would rejoice to find their tomb.
23 But God keeps their future a secret
and builds a wall around them to protect them.
24 When it is time to eat, all I can do is sigh with sadness, not joy.
My groans pour out like water.
25 I was afraid something terrible would happen,
and what I feared most has happened.
26 I cannot calm down or relax.
I am too upset to rest!”
*3:8 Leviathan Here, this is probably a giant sea monster. Some people thought magicians were able to make it “swallow the sun,” that is, cause an eclipse.