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New American Bible

2002 11 11
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Chapter 16


Then Job answered and said:


I have heard this sort of thing many times. Wearisome comforters are you all!


Is there no end to windy words? Or what sickness have you that you speak on?


I also could talk as you do, were you in my place. I could declaim over you, or wag my head at you;


I could strengthen you with talk, or shake my head with silent lips.


If I speak, this pain I have will not be checked; if I leave off, it will not depart from me.


But now that I am exhausted and stunned, all my company has closed in on me.


As a witness there rises up my traducer, speaking openly against me;


I am the prey his wrath assails, he gnashes his teeth against me. My enemies lord it over me;


their mouths are agape to bite me. They smite me on the cheek insultingly; they are all enlisted against me.


God has given me over to the impious; into the clutches of the wicked he has cast me.


I was in peace, but he dislodged me; he seized me by the neck and dashed me to pieces. He has set me up for a target;


his arrows strike me from all directions, He pierces my sides without mercy, he pours out my gall upon the ground.


He pierces me with thrust upon thrust; he attacks me like a warrior.


I have fastened sackcloth over my skin, and have laid my brow in the dust.


My face is inflamed with weeping and there is darkness over my eyes,


Although my hands are free from violence, and my prayer is sincere.


1 O earth, cover not my blood, nor let my outcry come to rest!


2 Even now, behold, my witness is in heaven, and my spokesman is on high.


My friends it is who wrong me; before God my eyes drop tears,


That he may do justice for a mortal in his presence and decide between a man and his neighbor.


For my years are numbered now, and I am on a journey from which I shall not return.



1 [18] As the blood of those who were unjustly slain cries to heaven for vengeance ( Genesis 4:10; Ezekiel 24:6-9), so Job's sufferings demand redress.

2 [19] Witness: refers either to God or, more probably, to Job's prayer.

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