1 Then Job replied:
2 “I have heard many things like these before.
What miserable comforters are you all!
3 Will there be an end to your windy words?
Or what provokes you that you answer?
4 I also could speak like you,
if you were in my place;
I could pile up words against you
and I could shake my head at you.
5 But I would strengthen you with my words;
comfort from my lips would bring you relief.
Abandonment by God and Man
6 “But if I speak, my pain is not relieved,
and if I refrain from speaking
– how much of it goes away?
7 Surely now he has worn me out,
you have devastated my entire household.
8 You have seized me,
and it has become a witness;
my leanness has risen up against me
and testifies against me.
9 His anger has torn me and persecuted me;
he has gnashed at me with his teeth;
my adversary locks his eyes on me.
10 People have opened their mouths against me,
they have struck my cheek in scorn;
they unite together against me.
11 God abandons me to evil men,
and throws me into the hands of wicked men.
12 I was in peace, and he has shattered me.
He has seized me by the neck and crushed me.
He has made me his target;
13 his archers surround me.
Without pity he pierces my kidneys
and pours out my gall on the ground.
14 He breaks through against me, time and time again;
he rushes against me like a warrior.
15 I have sewed sackcloth on my skin,
and buried my horn in the dust;
16 my face is reddened because of weeping,
and on my eyelids there is a deep darkness,
17 although there is no violence in my hands
and my prayer is pure.
An Appeal to God as Witness
18 “O earth, do not cover my blood,
nor let there be a secret place for my cry.
19 Even now my witness is in heaven;
my advocate is on high.
20 My intercessor is my friend
as my eyes pour out tears to God;
21 and he contends with God on behalf of man
as a man pleads for his friend.
22 For the years that lie ahead are few,
and then I will go on the way of no return.