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Baldad tests Job's sanity

Then Baldad seized him and said, "One should not speak that way to a man who not only is in mourning but also is best by many plagues. Take note: Although we are quite healthy, we were not strong enough to approach him because of the foul stench, except by the use of much perfume. You there, Eliphas, do you forget how you were when you fell ill for two days? Now then, let us be patient in order that we may discover his true condition. Perhaps he is emotionally disturbed. Perhaps he recalls his former prosperity and has become mentally deranged. For who would not be driven senseless and imbalanced when he is sick? But allow me to approach him, and I will determine his condition."

Then Baldad, when he had arisen, approached me and said, "Are you Job?"

And I said to him, "Yes."

And he said, "Is you heart untroubled?"

And I said to him, "My heart is not fixed on earthly concerns, since the earth and those who dwell in it are unstable. But my heart is fixed on heavenly concerns, for there is no upset in heaven."

And Baldad replied and said, "We know the earth is unstable, since of course it changes from time to time. Sometimes it steers an even course and is at peace; there are also times of war. But as for heaven, we hear that it stays calm. But if you are truly sound of mind, I will ask you about something. And if you answer me sensibly regarding the first query, I will ask you about a second matter. And if you answer me calmly, it will be clear that you are not emotionally disturbed."

So he said, "In whom do you hope?"

And I said, "In the God who lives."

And again he said to me, "Who destroyed your goods or inflicted you with these plagues?"

And I said, "God."

And again he replied and said, "Do you hope upon God? Then how do you reckon him to be unfair by inflicting you with all these plagues or destroying your goods? If he were to give and take away, it would actually be better for him not to have given anything. At no time does a king dishonor his own soldier who bears arms well for him. Or who will ever understand the deep things of the Lord and his wisdom? Who dares to ascribe to the Lord an injustice? Answer me this, Job.

And again I say to you, if you are sound of mind and have your wits about you, tell me why we see the sun on the one hand rising in the east and setting in the west, and again when we get up early we find it rising again in the east? Explain these things to me if you are a servant of God."

And to all this I said, "I do have my wits about me, and my mind is sound. Why then should I not speak out the magnificent things of the Lord? Or should my mouth utter blunder regarding the Master? Never! Who are we to be busying ourselves with heavenly matters, seeing that we are fleshy, having our lot in dust and ashes?

Now then, so you may know that my heart is sound, here is my question for you: Food enters the mouth, then water is drunk through the same mouth and sent into the same throat. But whenever the two reach the latrine, they are separated form each other. Who divides them?"

And Baldad said, "I do not know."

Again I replied and said to him, "If you do not understand the functions of the body, how can you understand heavenly matters?"

Sophar: Offers the royal physicians

Then Sophar replied and said, "We are not inquiring after things beyond us, but we have sought to know if you are of sound mind. And now we truly know that your intelligence has been unaffected. What then do you wish us to do for you? Look, since we are traveling we have brought along with us the physicians of our three kingdoms. Do you wish to be treated by them? Perhaps you will find relief."

But I answered and said, "My healing and treatment are from the Lord, who also created the physicians."

Sitis: Laments her children, dies, and is buried

While I was saying these things to them, My wife Sitis arrived in tattered garments, fleeing form the servitude of the official she served, since he had forbidden her to leave lest the fellow kings see her and seize her. When she came, she threw herself at their feet and said weeping, "Do you remember me, Eliphas - you and your two friends - what sort of person I used to be among you and how I used to dress? But now look at my debut and attire!"

Then, when they had made a great lamentation and were doubly exhausted, they fell silent so that Eliphas seized his purple robe, tore it off, and threw it about my wife.

But she began to beg them, saying, "I plead with you, order you soldiers to dig through the ruins of the house that fell on my children so that at least their bones might be preserved as a memorial since we cannot because of the expense. Let us see them, even if it is only their bones. Have I the womb of cattle or of a wild animal that my ten children have died and I have not arranged the burial of a single one of them?"

And they left to dig, but I forbade it, saying, "Do not trouble yourselves in vain. For you will not find my children, since they were taken up to heaven by the Creator their King."

Then again they answered me and said, "Who then will not say you are demented and mad when you say, 'My children have been taken up into heaven!" Tell us the truth now!"

And I replied to them and said, "Lift me up so I can stand erect." And they lifted me up, supporting my arms on each side. And then when I had stood up, I sang praises to the Father. And after the prayer, I said to them, "Look up with your eyes to the east and see my children crowned with the splendor of the heavenly one."

And when she saw that, Sitis my wife fell to the ground worshipping and said, "Now I know that I have a memorial with the Lord. So I shall arise and return to the city and nap awhile and then refresh myself before the duties of my servitude." And when she left for the city, she went to the cow shed of her oxen; which had been confiscated by the rulers, whom she served. And she lay down near a certain manger and died in good spirits.

When her domineering ruler sought her but could not find her, he went when it was evening into the folds of the herds and found her sprawled out dead. And all who saw cried out in an uproar of lament over her, and the sound reached through the whole city. When they rushed in to discover what had happened, they found her dead and the living animals standing about weeping over her.

And so bearing her in procession, they attended to her burial, locating her near the house that had collapsed on her children. And the poor of the city made a great lamentation saying,

"Look! This is Sitis, the woman of pride and splendor! She was not even considered worthy of a decent burial!"

So then you will find in "The Miscellanies" the lament made for her.

Jobs recovery and vindication

Elihu's insult

Elihu and the rest sat beside me after these things arguing and talking big against me. After twenty-seven days, they were about to arise and go to their own countries, when they were implored by Elihu, saying, "Stay here till I clarify this issue for him. You held on quite some time while Job boasted to himself to be a just man. But I will not hold on. From the start I too made lamentation for him, remembering his former prosperity. And here now he speaks out in boastful grandeur, saying he has his throne in heaven. Listen to me now, and I will tell you about his imaginary estate." Then Elihu, inspired ny Satan, spoke out against me insulting words, which are written down in "The miscellanies of Eliphas."

The kings forgiven through Job's intercession

After Elihu ended his arrogant speech, the Lord - having appeared plainly to me through a hurricane and clouds - spoke and censured Elihu, showing me that the one who spoke in him was not a human but a beast. And when the Lord spoke to me through the cloud, the four kings also heard the voice of him who spoke.

After the Lord finished speaking to me, he said to Eliphas, "You there, Eliphas - you and your two friends - why did you sin? You have not spoken truly regarding my servant Job. Arise and have him offer up sacrifices on your behalf so your sin might be taken away. Except for him, I would have destroyed you." So they brought me the things for sacrifice. And I took them and made an offering on their behalf, and the Lord received it favorably and forgave their sin.

A hymn against Elihu

Then when Eliphas, and Sophar knew that the Lord had showed them favor regarding their sin - but had not considered Elihu worthy - Eliphas replied and spoke up with a hymn while the other friends and their troops sang to him in response near the alter. Eliphas spoke in this manner:

"Our sins were stripped off, and our lawlessness buried.

Elihu, Elihu - the only evil one - will have no memorial among the living.

His quenched lamp lost its luster, and the splendor of his lantern will flee from him into condemnation.

For this one is the one of darkness and not of light.

And the doorkeepers of darkness shall inherit his splendor and majesty.

His kingdom is gone and his throne rotted.

And the honor of his tent lies in Hades.

He loved the beauty of the snake and the scales of the dragon.

Its venom and poison shall be his food.

He did not take to himself the Lord, nor did he fear Him.

But even his honored ones he provoked to anger.

The Lord has forgotten him, and the holy ones abandoned him.

But wrath and anger shall be his tent.

He has no hope in his heart, nor peace in his body.

He has the poison of asps in his tongue.

Righteous is the Lord, true are his judgments.

With Him there is no favoritism. He will judge us all together.

Behold the Lord has come! Behold his holy ones are prepared,

While crowns lead the way with praises.

Let the holy ones rejoice, let them leap for joy in their hearts,

For they have received the splendor they awaited.

Gone is our sin, cleansed is our lawlessness.

And the evil one Elihu has no memorial among the living."

Job's restoration

After Eliphas ended the hymn, while all ere singing in response to him and encircling the altar, we arose and entered the city where we now make our home. And we held great festivities in the delight of the Lord. Once again I sought to do good works for the poor.

And all my friends and those who had known me as a benefactor came to me and they queried me saying, "What do you ask of us now?" And remembering the poor again to do them good, I asked them saying, "Let each one give me a lamb for the clothing of the poor who are naked." So then every single one brought a lamb and a gold coin. And the Lord blessed all the goods I owned, and he doubled my estate.

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