Job 29

Job speaks about his life

29:1In chapter 29, Job remembers his life before he had all his troubles. He was a happy man and God was always with him. He remembers, too, all the people that he helped.

1 Job continued to speak. This is what he said:

2 ‘I would like my life to be as it was before,

many months ago.

At that time, God took care of me.

3 He was my guide,

as if he had a lamp to show me the way.

His light kept me safe

as I walked in dark places.

4 I was strong and well.

God was my friend

and he protected my home.

5 At that time, Almighty God was still with me.

My children were near me.

6 I got plenty of milk from my cows,

so that my life was easy.

My olive trees gave me lots of oil.

7 I would go to the gate of the city,

and sit there as one of the leaders.

8 When young men saw me,

they would move to the side.

Even the old men would stand up to respect me.

9 The city's rulers would stop speaking.

They would cover their mouths with their hands.

10 The important leaders would be quiet.

They would not want to say anything.

11 Everyone was very pleased

to listen to the things that I said.

They respected me

when they saw the things that I did.

12 When poor people cried for help,

I rescued them.

I helped children

who had no family that could help them.

13 People who were near to death praised me for my help.

Widows were happy when I helped them.

14 I always did what was right,

like good clothes that I wore.

I was fair and honest,

like my coat and my hat.

29:14Job is saying that he would not forget to dress himself in good clothes. In the same way, he would always remember to do what was right and honest.

15 If people were blind,

I would be their guide.

If people could not walk,

I would fetch things for them.

16 If poor people needed help,

I helped them like their father would do.

I spoke on behalf of strangers

to help them get justice.

17 I destroyed the power of wicked people.

I rescued the people that they had attacked.

18 At that time, I thought,

“I will live to be an old man.

After a long life, I will die in my own home.

19 My body is strong and well,

like a tree that always has plenty of water.

20 People will continue to give me honour.

Each day I will have new strength.”

21 People waited patiently to hear to my advice.

They listened carefully to what I said.

22 After I had spoken,

they did not say any more.

They listened to every word

and they thought about it.

23 They would wait for me to speak to them,

like people who wait for rain to fall.

My words would make them happy,

like rain in spring that makes a farmer happy.

24 They were surprised when I smiled at them.

My smile made them happy.

25 As their leader,

I told them what they should do.

I was like a king who leads his soldiers.

When they were sad,

I would comfort them.’