“My days are swifter than a runner.
They flee away.
They see no good.
They go by like skiffs of reed.
They go by like an eagle swooping on the prey.
If I say.
‘I will forget my complaint.
I will put off my sad countenance
I will be of good cheer.’
I become afraid of all my suffering.
I know that you will not hold me innocent.
I shall be condemned.
Why then do I labor in vain?
If I wash myself with snow,
And cleanse my hands with lye,
Yet you will plunge me into filth.
My own clothes will abhor me.
God is not a mortal,
As I am.
I cannot answer him.
We cannot come to trial together.
There is no umpire between us.
There is no one who might lay his hand upon us both.
Let him take his rod away from me.
Let not dread of him terrify me.
Then I would speak without fear of him,
I know that I am not what I am thought to be.”
Job believes that his days are numbered since they go quicker than a runner, a reed, or an eagle. Was he supposed to forget the complaint and all his sufferings? He would still suffer and be considered guilty. Why should he labor in vain, by washing with snow and lye? He will be sent back into filth, so that his own clothes will still dislike him? God is not a mortal like him. They are not equals. There is no umpire to say who is right. Just let God take his stick away from him. He wanted this dread to leave him so that he could speak freely. He realized that he was not perfect. Job could not forget about his circumstances. He could not cleanse himself. He could not call in a fair referee to solve his problems.