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Why Did Job Suffer? Essay

2504 words - 10 pages

Why did Job Suffer?Who is Job?Job, as read in the Bible, was a servant of God, and "there is none like him in the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God, and shuns evil" (Job 1:8). It could be considered that such a man would be protected by the God he served, from the evil experience of suffering. But it was not to be. Job lost everything from possessions to his family and his own health. ( In New Testament times, Job was considered a model of trustworthiness and was seen as one who persevered by looking ahead to God's salvation. Jesus was also portrayed as one who stood fast in time of trial, even unto death, in so doing breaking the power of sin and strengthening Christians to stand fast in their own trials (Garrett, 1999).Job was an actual man who in fact lived on this earth. Ezekiel mentioned him along with Noah and Daniel (Ezekiel.14:14, 20). James referenced to Job as an example of an individual enduring suffering with patience (James 5:11). Archaeologists have found in the records of ancient Babylonia, the story of a man named Job who suffered to a great extent. The Bible tells us three important things about Job. First, he was a good family man. Even though he lived in an age when it was common for a man to have many wives, he had only one (Job 2:9). Job had respect for God's original marriage law which was given in the beginning (Genesis 2:21-24; Matthew 19:3-9). Job had a large family of seven sons and three daughters (Job 1:2). Second, Job was a very wealthy man. The Bible says he was "the greatest of all the people of the East" (Job 1:3). He owned thousands of sheep, camels, donkeys, and oxen. He also had many servants (Job 1:3). Third, Job was a very good man. The Bible says that he was "blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil" (Job 1:1, Harris, 2007). According to Stephen Harris (2007), Job was a scrupulous man, he rose up early in the morning to offer sacrifices to God on behalf of his children (Job 1:5) in case they, even in thought, have sinned (Harris, 2007). God held up Job as an excellent example to Satan. He asked Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil" (Job 1:8)? (Truth for the World-Correspondence Studies, no date).Some people see Job as a scapegoat such as Rene Girard (Pippin, 1999). Thus, theodicy is one of the principal questions in Job. Rene Girard, notes, that the community plays a key role in Job's suffering (Pippin, 1999). Girard says that the cause of Job's suffering is "not divine, satanic nor physical, but merely human" (Pippin, 1999). Girard sees Job as a "scapegoat," that is, "the innocent party who polarizes a universal hatred, which is precisely the complaint of Job" (Pippin, 1999). Girard believes that we are even more deceitful than Job's unsympathetic friends when we fail to hold God...

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