In the previous chapter, Eliphaz had asserted his own theory of why people suffer. Now Job replies. His suffering is real. And it is devastating.
VERSE 1. Then Job answered,
VERSE 2. “Oh that my anguish were weighed, and all my calamity laid in the balances!
heavier than the sand of the seas. Job’s suffering is real. And it is devastating.
VERSE 4. For the arrows of the Almighty are within me. My spirit drinks up their poison. The terrors of God set themselves in array against me.
the arrows of the Almighty. When people suffer, they often imagine that God has done this to them. Job does.
However, it was actually Satan who did it:
Job 2:7. So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD, and struck Job with painful sores from the sole of his foot to his head.
VERSE 5. Does the wild donkey bray when he has grass? Or does the ox low over his fodder?
VERSE 6. Can that which has no flavor be eaten without salt? Or is there any taste in the white of an egg?
VERSE 7. My soul refuses to touch them. They are as loathsome food to me.
VERSE 8. “Oh that I might have my request, that God would grant the thing that I long for,
VERSE 9. even that it would please God to crush me; that he would let loose his hand, and cut me off!
VERSE 10. Be it still my consolation, yes, let me exult in pain that doesn’t spare, that I have not denied the words of the Holy One.
VERSE 11. What is my strength, that I should wait? What is my end, that I should be patient?
VERSE 12. Is my strength the strength of stones? Or is my flesh of bronze?
I have no help in me. Job realizes his own weakness and inadequacy.
To realize those things is a great gift. And yet few people are able to accept it. Most people stubbornly cling to their own ego.
wisdom is driven quite from me. Job was suffering from something like brain fog.
VERSE 14. “To him who is ready to faint, kindness should be shown from his friend; even to him who forsakes the fear of the Almighty.
kindness should be shown from his friend. Poor Job has to teach some basic Pastoral Care skills to his three friends. Specifically, they need to be kind.
VERSE 15. My brothers have dealt deceitfully as a brook, as the channel of brooks that pass away;
VERSE 16. Which are black by reason of the ice, in which the snow hides itself.
VERSE 17. In the dry season, they vanish. When it is hot, they are consumed out of their place.
VERSE 18. The caravans that travel beside them turn away. They go up into the waste, and perish.
VERSE 19. The caravans of Tema looked. The companies of Sheba waited for them.
VERSE 20. They were distressed because they were confident. They came there, and were confounded.
VERSE 21. For now you are nothing. You see a terror, and are afraid.
VERSE 22. Did I say, ‘Give to me?’ or, ‘Offer a present for me from your substance?’
VERSE 23. or, ‘Deliver me from the adversary’s hand?’ or, ‘Redeem me from the hand of the oppressors?’
VERSE 24. “Teach me, and I will hold my peace. Cause me to understand wherein I have erred.
VERSE 25. How forcible are words of uprightness! But your reproof, what does it reprove?
VERSE 26. Do you intend to reprove words, since the speeches of one who is desperate are as wind?
VERSE 27. Yes, you would even cast lots for the fatherless, and make merchandise of your friend.
VERSE 28. Now therefore be pleased to look at me, for surely I shall not lie to your face.
VERSE 29. Please return. Let there be no injustice. Yes, return again. My cause is righteous.
VERSE 30. Is there injustice on my tongue? Can’t my taste discern mischievous things?
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.