Old Testament

Job 16
Round Two: Job's First Speech:
You are miserable comforters
but God is my Witness
161Job responded:
2I have heard many things just like these.
You are miserable comforters, all of you!
3Is there any end to your windy words?
What provokes you to respond like this?
4I also could speak just like you,
if your lives were in the same condition that my life is.
I could weave fancy words against you
and shake my head at you.
5But instead, I would build you up with the words from my mouth,
and comforting words from my lips would ease your pain.
6Now if I speak up, it does not lessen my pain,
and if I hold back, how much of my pain goes away?
7Surely, he[] has worn me out!
You have devastated everyone close to me.
8You have made me shrivel up, []
and this testifies against me.
My emaciated body stands up
and is a witness against me.
9His anger has torn me.
He has been hostile to me.
He has gnashed his teeth at me.
My opponent glares at me with piercing eyes.
10People have opened their mouths wide against me.
They have slapped my face with contempt.
They have ganged up on me.
11God hands me over to evil people.[]
He throws me into the hands of the wicked.
12When I was at ease, he shattered me.[]
He seized me by the neck and has ripped me to pieces.
He has set me up as his target.
13His archers surround me.
He pierces my kidneys and has no pity.
He pours out my bile on the earth.
14He breaks down my walls in many places.
He runs against me like a warrior.
15I have stitched sackcloth to my skin.
My horn[] is stuck in the dust.
16My face is red from my weeping.
There are dark circles under my eyes,
17even though there is no violence in my hands,
and my prayer is pure.
18O earth, do not cover my blood.
Let my cry never find a place to rest.
19Even now, my witness is in heaven.
My advocate is on high.
20My intercessor is my friend.
My eyes never stop weeping to God.
21My intercessor pleads with God for a man,
as another human pleads for his friend.
22A few more years will come.
Then I will go the way of no return.


  • 16:7 The reading he follows the Hebrew text. It refers to God. Hebrew poetry sometimes alternates between third and second person pronouns, as is the case here.
  • 16:8 The meaning of this verb is uncertain.
  • 16:11 The reading evil people follows the ancient versions. The Hebrew reads a boy.
  • 16:12 Or tossed me about
  • 16:15 A horn is a symbol of strength.