Tobit, who recently had lost his sight, has just endured the anger of his wife Anna after he had accused her of stealing the goat. In his dispair he thinks it is all because of his sins and those of his ancestors. Here he prays for an end to his suffering: "command my spirit to be taken from me, that I may be dissolved, and become earth: for it is profitable for me to die rather than to live [..]". Anna looks on, completely surprised by the old man's prayers.
Rembrandt was hardly twenty years old when he painted this small but impressive panel.