Thursday, November 10, 2011


We were all raised to think that the suffering of Job was entirely Satan’s doing, right? God is not the one who brought about this suffering, right? After all, what do we find in the following two passages?

And yet guess what we find near the conclusion of the book of Job--Job 42.11a, specifically:

Then all his brothers, all his sisters, and all those who had been his acquaintances before, came to him and ate food with him in his house; and they consoled him and comforted him for all the adversity that the LORD had brought upon him.

So it’s taken me decades to finally notice this today, but the book of Job always had a providential and theodical outlook that jibes with Calvinism. Interestingly enough, maybe an hour after I noticed this I happened upon this older post from the redoubtable Steve Hays: Triablogue: Rosemary's Baby.

Finally, and in switching gears a bit, it bears noting that Job apparently held the belief right from the outset that God was in some way actively involved with the troubles he had encountered. In chapter one Job says “The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away” and in chapter two he says “Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” So Job was wise to see God’s involvement where many other people would see no such involvement. Yet in the closing chapters of the book of Job (38-42) the man Job is made out to be a creature that, ultimately, really isn’t that wise or knowledgeable after all. This is one thing to keep in mind the next time things in life start going wrong and you ask, “Why me?”

1 comment:

D.B. said...

I thought this was a good post. It does seem weird, sometimes. I feel like I am reading the Bible (and individual passages) for the first time, sometimes.