The Book of Job: Righteous Suffering Essay

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The Book of Job: Righteous Suffering At first glance, it would appear that the Book of Job simply asks the question, ‘Why do bad things happen to good people?’ Why would God, in all of his omnipotence and righteousness, cast evil upon those who devote every aspect of their life to adhering to the word of the divine? After a just and humble Job has everything he ever valued in life stripped away from him, he is left begging for an answer to this question. Within Job’s struggle throughout the story, he is confronted by a number of third parties who are particularly eager and resolute in their views on this matter. Within the confines of this account, they represent orthodoxy for logic in the eternal struggle between reason and…show more content…
This idea of God’s ability to enforce retribution directly to those who have sinned is reinforced within the first speech by Job’s friend, Eliphaz. “Think now, what innocent man ever perished? Where have the upright been destroyed?” (Book of Job 76). If God does not punish the innocent, and we recognize Job as an archetype for the embodiment of righteousness and benevolence, is it really possible for any human being to be truly innocent in the eyes of God? The answer for Eliphaz is ‘No,’ and the lesson he tries to convey to Job is not to scorn the discipline nature of God, but to change from an unjust individual into one who sees humility as a means of protection from arrogance in theological issues that cannot be codified or definitive. In the end, Eliphaz implores Job to take comfort in the fact that God has enacted his retribution for good, and that Job’s faithfulness overall will be seen in a favorable light with God. The next to speak with Job was Bildad, who follows closely along the ideas that Eliphaz outlined, but furthers the belief of God’s direct punishment by asserting that Job’s children’s actions are what led to their ultimate punishment and the sparing of Job’s life. “If your sons sinned against Him, He dispatched them for their transgression” […] “Though your beginning be small, In the end you will grow very great” (Book of Job 79). Like Eliphaz, yet

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