A painting of Job and his friends by Ilya Repin.

Job’s Friends Visit Him

Job 2:11-3:26

Highlights from this Passage

  • Job’s friends come to visit him after they hear the news.
  • Job complains, and he curses the day he was born.
  • Job desires to die.


Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that had come on him, they each came from his own place: Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite; and they made an appointment together to come to sympathize with him and to comfort him. When they lifted up their eyes from a distance, and didn’t recognize him, they raised their voices, and wept; and they each tore his robe, and sprinkled dust on their heads toward the sky. So they sat down with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word to him, for they saw that his grief was very great.

After this Job opened his mouth, and cursed the day of his birth. Job answered:

“Let the day perish in which I was born,
    the night which said, ‘There is a boy conceived.’
Let that day be darkness.
    Don’t let God from above seek for it,
    neither let the light shine on it.
Let darkness and the shadow of death claim it for their own.
    Let a cloud dwell on it.
    Let all that makes the day black terrify it.
As for that night, let thick darkness seize on it.
    Let it not rejoice among the days of the year.
    Let it not come into the number of the months.
Behold, let that night be barren.
    Let no joyful voice come therein.
Let them curse it who curse the day,
    who are ready to rouse up leviathan.
Let the stars of its twilight be dark.
    Let it look for light, but have none,
    neither let it see the eyelids of the morning,
because it didn’t shut up the doors of my mother’s womb,
    nor did it hide trouble from my eyes.

“Why didn’t I die from the womb?
    Why didn’t I give up the spirit when my mother bore me?
Why did the knees receive me?
    Or why the breast, that I should nurse?
For now I should have lain down and been quiet.
    I should have slept, then I would have been at rest,
with kings and counselors of the earth,
    who built up waste places for themselves;
or with princes who had gold,
    who filled their houses with silver:
or as a hidden untimely birth I had not been,
    as infants who never saw light.
There the wicked cease from troubling.
    There the weary are at rest.
There the prisoners are at ease together.
    They don’t hear the voice of the taskmaster.
The small and the great are there.
    The servant is free from his master.

“Why is light given to him who is in misery,
    life to the bitter in soul,
Who long for death, but it doesn’t come;
    and dig for it more than for hidden treasures,
who rejoice exceedingly,
    and are glad, when they can find the grave?
Why is light given to a man whose way is hidden,
    whom God has hedged in?
For my sighing comes before I eat.
    My groanings are poured out like water.
For the thing which I fear comes on me,
    That which I am afraid of comes to me.
I am not at ease, neither am I quiet, neither do I have rest;
    but trouble comes.”

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