There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man feared God and shunned evil. Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. And the Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?” So, Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the Earth, and from walking back and forth on it.” Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the Earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” So, Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? You have blessed the work of his hands! But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to your face!” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.” So, Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house; and a messenger came to Job and said: A great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people, and they are dead! Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord!” In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.
Again, there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the Lord. And the Lord said to Satan, “From where you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the Earth, and from walking back and forth on it.” Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the Earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns Evil? And still he holds fast to his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to destroy him without cause.” So, Satan answered the Lord and said: Stretch out Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand, but spare his life.”
So, Satan went out from the presence of the Lord, and struck Job with painful boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. And he took for himself a potsherd with which to scrape himself while he sat in the midst of the ashes. Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!” But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips.
Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this adversity that had come upon him, each one came from his own place—Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. For they had made an appointment together to come and mourn with him, and to comfort him.
After this Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth: For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, and what I dreaded has happened to me. I am not at ease, nor am I quiet; I have no rest, for trouble comes. In disquieting thoughts from the visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on men; fear came upon me, and trembling which made all my bones shake. Then a spirit passed before my face; the hair on my body stood up. It stood still, but I could not discern its appearance. A form was before my eyes; there was silence, then I heard a voice saying: ‘Can a mortal be more righteous than God? Can a man be more pure than his Maker? If He puts no trust in His servants, if He charges His angels with error; how much more those who dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust. Does not their own excellence go away? They die, without wisdom...’
The terrors of God are arrayed against me! Is there not a time of hard service for man on Earth? So, I have been allotted months of futility, and wearisome nights have been appointed to me. When I lie down, I say, ‘When shall I arise, and the night be ended?’ For I have had my fill of tossing till dawn. When I say, ‘My bed will comfort me, my couch will ease my complaint,’ Then You scare me with dreams and terrify me with visions.
What is man, that You should exalt him, that You should set Your heart on him, that You should visit him every morning, and test him every moment? Have I sinned? Why then do You not pardon my transgression, and take away my iniquity?
If I called and He answered me, I would not believe that He was listening to my voice: For He crushes me with a tempest and multiplies my wounds without cause. He will not allow me to catch my breath but fills me with bitterness!
Withdraw Your hand far from me and let not the dread of You make me afraid. Make me know my transgression and my sin. My face is flushed from weeping, and on my eyelids is the shadow of death. Are not mockers with me? And does not my eye dwell on their provocation?
His troops come together and build up their road against me; they encamp all around my tent. They come as broad breakers; under the ruinous storm they roll along. Terrors are turned upon me; they pursue my honor as the wind, and my prosperity has passed like a cloud. And now my soul is poured out because of my plight; the days of affliction take hold of me...
But when I looked for Good, Evil came to me; and when I waited for light, then came darkness. I stand up in the assembly and cry out for help! The hand of God has struck me! Why do you persecute me as God does?
For I know that my Redeemer lives, and He shall stand at last on the Earth; and after my skin is destroyed, this I know, that in my flesh I shall see God. Then He will save the humble person, He will even deliver one who is not innocent; yes, he will be delivered by the purity of your hands.
But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold! I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food. For He performs what is appointed for me…
For what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he may gain much, if God takes away his life? The east wind carries him away, and he is gone; it sweeps him out of his place. Should a wise man answer with empty knowledge, and fill himself with the east wind? Their womb prepares deceit. My bowels boiled, and did not rest…
Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from Evil is understanding.
But there is a spirit in man, and the breath of the Almighty gives him understanding. In order to turn man from his deed and conceal pride from man; He keeps back his soul from the Pit, and his life from perishing by the sword. Man is also chastened with pain on his bed, and with strong pain in many of his bones.
If He should gather to Himself His Spirit and His breath, all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust. In a moment they die, in the middle of the night; the people are shaken and pass away; the mighty are taken away without a hand…
If there is a messenger for him, a mediator, one among a thousand, to show man His uprightness; then He is gracious to him, and says, ‘Deliver him from going down to the Pit; I have found a ransom! He shall pray to God, and he will delight in him, he shall see His face with joy, for He restores to man His righteousness. Then he looks at men and says, ‘I have sinned, and perverted what was right, and it did not profit me.’ He will redeem his soul from going down to the Pit, and his life shall see the light! Behold, God works all these things; twice, in fact, three times with a man, to bring back his soul from the Pit, that he may be enlightened with the light of life.
Although you say you do not see Him, yet justice is before Him, and you must wait for Him! He seals the hand of every man, that all men may know His work…
Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said: Would you condemn Me that you may be justified? Have you an arm like God? He hangs the Earth on nothing!
Then Job answered the Lord and said: Therefore, I repent in dust and ashes…
And so it was, after the Lord had spoken these words to Job, that the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite: My servant Job shall pray for you. For I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has.
And the Lord turned the captivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends: Also, the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before!