Take the 2-minute tour ×
Christianity Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for committed Christians, experts in Christianity and those interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

His 3 friends who said bad things don't happen to good people were wrong. He was also queried by God for his own view (which was asking why. Or was it self pity?). So what was the lesson learnt?

share|improve this question

put on hold as too broad by David Stratton 2 days ago

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

3 Answers 3

up vote 11 down vote accepted

The point of the book of Job is revealed in the final chapters, in which God answers Job directly, and Job's "comforters" indirectly. From our point of view, God's answer is not very satisfying, in part because God does not give Job a reason for why He allowed him to suffer so horribly!

And that, my friend, is precisely the point of the book of Job.

We easily get sidetracked with peripheral--albeit significant--issues such as

  • Why did God allow sin to infect the universe He created?

  • Why do the blameless--notice I did not say innocent or sinless--suffer?

  • Why did God seemingly give Satan free rein over blameless Job, one of God's choice servants?

The main point of the book is that God is the potter, and we His creatures are the clay. The clay doesn't tell the potter what to do (see Isaiah 29:15-16, and 45:9 ff.).

Similarly, for reasons known ultimately only to Him, God shapes, molds, and fashions His children in ways which from our finite point of view seem only to hurt us. The truth is, however, God sends us trials, ultimately, to make us BETTER, not BITTER. To switch metaphors, the vinedresser prunes us, the vine's branches(ouch!) , so that we bear more fruit! That is His right. He is the vinedresser (John 15:1,2).

Job was tempted to raise an accusatory finger to God, but in the end he repented in dust and ashes, saying,

"'Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know'" (42:3b).

In other words, Job stood in awe of God, realizing God is God, and that His thoughts and ways transcended Job's ability to understand (see Isaiah 55:8-9). Job finally realized in chapter 42 that for him to "sit in judgment on God" was unthinkable, as was his expecting God to answer his questions, at least to Job's satisfaction!

God alone is the Judge of all the earth (Genesis 18:25b), and our "job" (no pun intended) as His creatures is to obey, serve, love, and submit to Him with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.

In conclusion, we do well to say, along with Job,

"'Indeed, I am completely unworthy–-how could I reply to you? I put my hand over my mouth to silence myself. I have spoken once, but I cannot answer; twice, but I will say no more'” (40:3-4 NET).

At the end of his ordeal, Job learned his place as a lump of clay: on the potter's wheel.

share|improve this answer

In the 9th chapter of John is the story of the blind man healed by Jesus. His disciples asked who sinned that the man was born blind. Jesus replies in vs 3 "Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him."

I was blessed to meet a teenager with terminal cancer while working at a christian summer camp. He was full of nothing but joy while there. I say blessed because of the lesson he taught me. I asked him why he always had a smile. He said that he was so very happy that in the short time he had, God had allowed him to share his faith with so many because of his illness.

This is a guess on my part, but I feel confident that Job feels humble and honored that God has used him to give strength to the faith of others who are dealing with painful experiences.

share|improve this answer

The 'point' of Job is the same as every other book of the Bible: that "...you will know that I am LORD..." (e.g. Exodus: every plague...; Ezekiel: every calamity, 60 times...; etc.) e.g. Job: '...I know that you can do all things...' and '...I had heard of you...but now I've seen you...'etc. How is it that the Omniscient Elohim, God, Creates a situation that takes Himself to the point of deep, deep regret, weeping, sighing, that He created man? (Genesis 6) How is it that He takes Job to the point that he regrets being created? (Chapter 3 etc.) The Hebrew 'nacham' (repent KJV) of God in Gen 6 is the same 'repenting in dust and ashes' and 'sighing' of Job. What did the Holy God of Heaven (Is 6) suffer to become the incarnate God of Jn 17? Jesus is the Adonai Lord of Isaiah according to John 12:41. In Creation God was faithful to accomplish all that He set out to accomplish: Gen 3, the seed of the woman will crush the serpent...; all of the Covenants...; all of Job's Blessings... Job is faithful to bless God because He is worthy of blessings...he would not curse God! The perfect God of heaven makes room for something less than God in Creation; something imperfect...you! (Google the Hebrew 'tzimtzum') God suffered dearly to avail Himself to you and in your faithful integrity you can bless the LORD. Job is much more about the suffering of the Holy God...on behalf of you; that you may know the Blessings and the blessings... of 'job'...

share|improve this answer
1  
Could you please edit this to use more paragraph breaks? –  curiousdannii 2 days ago
    
I'm not arguing the validity of what you say, but this would be a much better answer if you had supporting references. As it is, it reads like a personal interpretation rather than an established teaching. See What makes a good supported answer? –  David Stratton 2 days ago

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.