1 In rebuttal, Job replied: 2 "If only my grief could be weighed; or my calamity piled together on a balance scale! 3 It would weigh more than the sand on the seashore! Here's why I've talked so rashly: 4 "The arrows of the Almighty have pierced me; my spirit absorbs their poison; God's terrors have been arranged just for me! 5 "Will the wild donkey bray from hunger if fresh grass is beside him? Will the ox low from distress if it is near its feed? 6 Tasteless food isn't eaten without salt, is it? Is there any taste in an egg white? 7 I cannot bring myself to touch them; food like this makes me sick."
8 "Who will grant my wish? I wish God would grant what I'm hoping for: 9 that God would just be willing to crush me; that he would let loose and eliminate me! 10 At least I could still take comfort and rejoice in unceasing anguish, for I didn't conceal what the Holy One has to say.
11 "Do I have the strength to wait? And why should I be patient? 12 Am I as strong as a rock? Am I some kind of iron man? 13 There is no help within me, is there? My resources have been driven away from me, haven't they?
14 The friend shows gracious love for his friend, even if he has forsaken the fear of the Almighty. 15 But my brothers have acted treacherously like a cascading river, like torrential rivers that overflow. 16 Filled with waters made cold by ice, they are where the snow goes to hide. 17 But then the snow melts, and they disappear; when warmed, they evaporate from their stream beds. 18 Travelers divert in their route; they go into a wasteland and die. 19 Travelers from Tema search intently; caravans from Sheba hope to find them. 20 For all their expectations, they are doomed to disappointment; even though they have come and searched this far. 21 "And now you're all just like them, aren't you? You see my terror and are terrified. 22 When did I ever ask you for anything, say "Offer a bribe for me from your wealth?' 23 or say "Deliver me from my enemy's control,' or "Redeem me from the domination of ruthless people'?"
24 "Instruct me, and I'll remain silent. Help me understand where I've gone astray. 25 The truth can be painful, but what has your argument proven? 26 Did you intend your words to reprove, even though the speech of a desperate person is just wind? 27 Indeed, you would gamble to buy an orphan; and barter to buy your friend!