Job 16
Contemporary English Version
Job's Reply to Eliphaz

I Have Often Heard This

1Job said:

2I have often heard this,

and it offers no comfort.

3So why don't you keep quiet?

What's bothering you?

4If I were in your place,

it would be easy to criticize

or to give advice.

5But I would offer hope

and comfort instead.

6If I speak, or if I don't,

I hurt all the same.

My torment continues.

7God has worn me down

and destroyed my family;

8my shriveled up skin proves

that I am his prisoner.

9God is my hateful enemy,

glaring at me and attacking

with his sharp teeth.

10Everyone is against me;

they sneer and slap my face.

11And God is the one

who handed me over

to this merciless mob.

Everything Was Going Well

12Everything was going well,

until God grabbed my neck

and shook me to pieces.

God set me up as the target

13for his arrows,

and without showing mercy,

he slashed my stomach open,

spilling out my insides.

14God never stops attacking,

15and so, in my sorrow

I dress in sackcloth+

and sit in the dust.

16My face is red with tears,

and dark shadows

circle my eyes,

17though I am not violent,

and my prayers are sincere.

18If I should die,

I beg the earth not to cover

my cry for justice.

19 Even now, God in heaven

is both my witness

and my protector.

20My friends have rejected me,

but God is the one I beg+

21to show that I am right,

just as a friend should.

22Because in only a few years,

I will be dead and gone.


16.15 sackcloth: A rough, dark-colored cloth made from goat hair and used to make grain sacks. It was worn in times of trouble or sorrow.
16.20 My friends … beg: Or “God is my friend, and he is the one I beg.”

Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®)

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