New International Reader's Version

Job 3

Job Wishes He Had Never Been Born

1After a while, Job opened his mouth to speak. He cursed the day he had been born. He said,

“May the day I was born be wiped out.
    May the night be wiped away when people said, ‘A boy is born!’
May that day turn into darkness.
    May God in heaven not care about it.
    May no light shine on it.
May gloom and total darkness take it back.
    May a cloud settle over it.
    May blackness cover it up.
May deep darkness take over the night I was born.
    May it not be included among the days of the year.
    May it never appear in any of the months.
May no children ever have been born on that night.
    May no shout of joy be heard in it.
May people say evil things about that day.
    May people ready to wake the sea monster Leviathan say evil things about that day.
May its morning stars become dark.
    May it lose all hope of ever seeing daylight.
    May it not see the first light of the morning sun.
10 It didn’t keep my mother from letting me be born.
    It didn’t keep my eyes from seeing trouble.

11 “Why didn’t I die when I was born?
    Why didn’t I die as I came out of my mother’s body?
12 Why was I placed on her knees?
    Why did her breasts give me milk?
13 If all of that hadn’t happened,
    I would be lying down in peace.
    I’d be asleep and at rest in the grave.
14 I’d be with the earth’s kings and rulers.
    They had built for themselves places that are now destroyed.
15 I’d be with princes who used to have gold.
    They had filled their houses with silver.
16 Why wasn’t I buried like a baby who was born dead?
    Why wasn’t I buried like a child who never saw the light of day?
17 In the grave, sinful people don’t cause trouble anymore.
    And there tired people find rest.
18 Prisoners also enjoy peace there.
    They don’t hear a slave driver shouting at them anymore.
19 The least important and most important people are there.
    And there the slaves are set free from their owners.

20 “Why should those who suffer ever be born?
    Why should life be given to those whose spirits are bitter?
21 Why is life given to those who long for death that doesn’t come?
    Why is it given to those who would rather search for death
    than for hidden treasure?
22 Why is life given to those who are actually happy and glad
    when they reach the grave?
23 Why is life given to a man like me?
    God hasn’t told me what will happen to me.
    He has surrounded me with nothing but trouble.
24 Sighs have become my food every day.
    Groans pour out of me like water.
25 What I was afraid of has come on me.
    What I worried about has happened to me.
26 I don’t have any peace and quiet.
    I can’t find any rest. All I have is trouble.”