EESH ha-YAH v’-E-retz UTZ i-YOV sh’-MO v’-ha-YAH ha-EESH ha-HU TAM v’-ya-SHAR vee-RAY e-lo-HEEM v’-SAR may-RA
1:1 There was a man in the land of Utz
The word Uz, in Hebrew utz (עוץ), is derived from the Hebrew word etz (עץ), meaning ‘tree.’ The Sages of the Talmud (Bava Batra 15a) teach that phrase “land of Utz” refers to Eretz Yisrael, called Utz in honor of Iyov, who protected the people of his generation with his steadfast righteousness. Just as a tree provides shade and protection from the sun, Iyov’s merit protected the inhabitants of the land. Similarly, before Moshe sent spies into Eretz Yisrael, he asked them to check whether or not there were any trees in the land (Numbers 13:20). The medieval commentator Rashi explains that Moshe was really asking, “Does the Land of Israel have a worthy man living in it, who will protect the inhabitants with his merit?”3 comments
2 Seven sons and three daughters were born to him;
ב וַיִּוָּלְדוּ לוֹ שִׁבְעָה בָנִים וְשָׁלוֹשׁ בָּנוֹת׃
3 his possessions were seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen and five hundred she-asses, and a very large household. That man was wealthier than anyone in the East.
ג וַיְהִי מִקְנֵהוּ שִׁבְעַת אַלְפֵי־צֹאן וּשְׁלֹשֶׁת אַלְפֵי גְמַלִּים וַחֲמֵשׁ מֵאוֹת צֶמֶד־בָּקָר וַחֲמֵשׁ מֵאוֹת אֲתוֹנוֹת וַעֲבֻדָּה רַבָּה מְאֹד וַיְהִי הָאִישׁ הַהוּא גָּדוֹל מִכָּל־בְּנֵי־קֶדֶם׃
4 It was the custom of his sons to hold feasts, each on his set day in his own home. They would invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them.
ד וְהָלְכוּ בָנָיו וְעָשׂוּ מִשְׁתֶּה בֵּית אִישׁ יוֹמוֹ וְשָׁלְחוּ וְקָרְאוּ לִשְׁלֹשֶׁת אחיתיהם [אַחְיוֹתֵיהֶם] לֶאֱכֹל וְלִשְׁתּוֹת עִמָּהֶם׃
5 When a round of feast days was over, Iyov would send word to them to sanctify themselves, and, rising early in the morning, he would make burnt offerings, one for each of them; for Iyov thought, “Perhaps my children have sinned and blasphemed Hashem in their thoughts.” This is what Iyov always used to do.
6 One day the divine beings presented themselves before Hashem, and the Adversary came along with them.
ו וַיְהִי הַיּוֹם וַיָּבֹאוּ בְּנֵי הָאֱלֹהִים לְהִתְיַצֵּב עַל־יְהֹוָה וַיָּבוֹא גַם־הַשָּׂטָן בְּתוֹכָם׃
7 Hashem said to the Adversary, “Where have you been?” The Adversary answered Hashem, “I have been roaming all over the earth.”
ז וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל־הַשָּׂטָן מֵאַיִן תָּבֹא וַיַּעַן הַשָּׂטָן אֶת־יְהֹוָה וַיֹּאמַר מִשּׁוּט בָּאָרֶץ וּמֵהִתְהַלֵּךְ בָּהּ׃
8 Hashem said to the Adversary, “Have you noticed My servant Iyov? There is no one like him on earth, a blameless and upright man who fears Hashem and shuns evil!”
ח וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל־הַשָּׂטָן הֲשַׂמְתָּ לִבְּךָ עַל־עַבְדִּי אִיּוֹב כִּי אֵין כָּמֹהוּ בָּאָרֶץ אִישׁ תָּם וְיָשָׁר יְרֵא אֱלֹהִים וְסָר מֵרָע׃
9 The Adversary answered Hashem, “Does Iyov not have good reason to fear Hashem?
ט וַיַּעַן הַשָּׂטָן אֶת־יְהֹוָה וַיֹּאמַר הַחִנָּם יָרֵא אִיּוֹב אֱלֹהִים׃
10 Why, it is You who have fenced him round, him and his household and all that he has. You have blessed his efforts so that his possessions spread out in the land.
י הֲלֹא־את [אַתָּה] שַׂכְתָּ בַעֲדוֹ וּבְעַד־בֵּיתוֹ וּבְעַד כָּל־אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ מִסָּבִיב מַעֲשֵׂה יָדָיו בֵּרַכְתָּ וּמִקְנֵהוּ פָּרַץ בָּאָרֶץ׃
11 But lay Your hand upon all that he has and he will surely blaspheme You to Your face.”
יא וְאוּלָם שְׁלַח־נָא יָדְךָ וְגַע בְּכָל־אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ אִם־לֹא עַל־פָּנֶיךָ יְבָרֲכֶךָּ׃
12 Hashem replied to the Adversary, “See, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on him.” The Adversary departed from the presence of Hashem.
יב וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה אֶל־הַשָּׂטָן הִנֵּה כָל־אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ בְּיָדֶךָ רַק אֵלָיו אַל־תִּשְׁלַח יָדֶךָ וַיֵּצֵא הַשָּׂטָן מֵעִם פְּנֵי יְהֹוָה׃
13 One day, as his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in the house of their eldest brother,
יג וַיְהִי הַיּוֹם וּבָנָיו וּבְנֹתָיו אֹכְלִים וְשֹׁתִים יַיִן בְּבֵית אֲחִיהֶם הַבְּכוֹר׃
14 a messenger came to Iyov and said, “The oxen were plowing and the she-asses were grazing alongside them
יד וּמַלְאָךְ בָּא אֶל־אִיּוֹב וַיֹּאמַר הַבָּקָר הָיוּ חֹרְשׁוֹת וְהָאֲתֹנוֹת רֹעוֹת עַל־יְדֵיהֶם׃
15 when Sabeans attacked them and carried them off, and put the boys to the sword; I alone have escaped to tell you.”
טו וַתִּפֹּל שְׁבָא וַתִּקָּחֵם וְאֶת־הַנְּעָרִים הִכּוּ לְפִי־חָרֶב וָאִמָּלְטָה רַק־אֲנִי לְבַדִּי לְהַגִּיד לָךְ׃
16 This one was still speaking when another came and said, “Hashem‘s fire fell from heaven, took hold of the sheep and the boys, and burned them up; I alone have escaped to tell you.”
טז עוֹד זֶה מְדַבֵּר וְזֶה בָּא וַיֹּאמַר אֵשׁ אֱלֹהִים נָפְלָה מִן־הַשָּׁמַיִם וַתִּבְעַר בַּצֹּאן וּבַנְּעָרִים וַתֹּאכְלֵם וָאִמָּלְטָה רַק־אֲנִי לְבַדִּי לְהַגִּיד לָךְ׃
17 This one was still speaking when another came and said, “A Chaldean formation of three columns made a raid on the camels and carried them off and put the boys to the sword; I alone have escaped to tell you.”
יז עוֹד זֶה מְדַבֵּר וְזֶה בָּא וַיֹּאמַר כַּשְׂדִּים שָׂמוּ שְׁלֹשָׁה רָאשִׁים וַיִּפְשְׁטוּ עַל־הַגְּמַלִּים וַיִּקָּחוּם וְאֶת־הַנְּעָרִים הִכּוּ לְפִי־חָרֶב וָאִמָּלְטָה רַק־אֲנִי לְבַדִּי לְהַגִּיד לָךְ׃
18 This one was still speaking when another came and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in the house of their eldest brother
יח עַד זֶה מְדַבֵּר וְזֶה בָּא וַיֹּאמַר בָּנֶיךָ וּבְנוֹתֶיךָ אֹכְלִים וְשֹׁתִים יַיִן בְּבֵית אֲחִיהֶם הַבְּכוֹר׃
19 when suddenly a mighty wind came from the wilderness. It struck the four corners of the house so that it collapsed upon the young people and they died; I alone have escaped to tell you.”
20 Then Iyov arose, tore his robe, cut off his hair, and threw himself on the ground and worshiped.
כ וַיָּקָם אִיּוֹב וַיִּקְרַע אֶת־מְעִלוֹ וַיָּגָז אֶת־רֹאשׁוֹ וַיִּפֹּל אַרְצָה וַיִּשְׁתָּחוּ׃
21 He said, “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there; Hashem has given, and Hashem has taken away; blessed be the name of Hashem.”