Job’s Former Blessings
1 And Job continued his discourse:
2 “How I long for the months gone by,
for the days when God watched over me,
3 when His lamp shone above my head,
and by His light I walked through the darkness,
when the friendship of God rested on my tent,
5 when the Almighty was still with me
and my children were around me,
6 when my steps were bathed in cream
and the rock poured out for me streams of oil!
7 When I went out to the city gate
and took my seat in the public square,
8 the young men saw me and withdrew,
and the old men rose to their feet.
9 The princes refrained from speaking
and covered their mouths with their hands.
10 The voices of the nobles were hushed,
and their tongues stuck to the roofs of their mouths.
11 For those who heard me called me blessed,
and those who saw me commended me,
12 because I rescued the poor who cried out
and the fatherless who had no helper.
13 The dying man blessed me,
and I made the widow’s heart sing for joy.
14 I put on righteousness, and it clothed me;
justice was my robe and my turban.
15 I served as eyes to the blind
and as feet to the lame.
16 I was a father to the needy,
and I took up the case of the stranger.
17 I shattered the fangs of the unjust
and snatched the prey from his teeth.
18 So I thought: ‘I will die in my nest
and multiply my days as the sand.
19 My roots will spread out to the waters,
and the dew will rest nightly on my branches.
20 My glory is ever new within me,
and my bow is renewed in my hand.’
21 Men listened to me with expectation,
waiting silently for my counsel.
22 After my words, they spoke no more;
my speech settled on them like dew.
23 They waited for me as for rain
and drank in my words like spring showers.
24 If I smiled at them, they did not believe it;
the light of my countenance was precious.
25 I chose their course and presided as chief.
So I dwelt as a king among his troops,
as a comforter of the mourners.
4 a Hebrew in the time of my harvest