This week we will begin a new study in the book of Job. How often have you suffered, or known someone who is suffering and the question that forms most readily is “why?”. Why is this happening? Why God? If there is a common issue that unifies those who can’t believe in God, it’s the issue of cruelty and suffering. How could a good and all powerful God allow so much suffering in the world?
That’s been a question through the ages. It’s really the thematic center of the book of Job.
And yet…Job gives us no real answers. As John Walton puts it in his commentary, Job simply provides us with better questions to ask in the midst of suffering.
This Sunday we’ll be looking at the structure and nature of the book, as well as reading the first two chapters. I’m going to do something different with this study – here on Wonderwhat I’m going to post an audio reading of the chapters we’ll cover – that way, if we don’t end up reading the whole passage on Sundays, you can listen to the whole thing read at your leisure. The audio file is at the top of the post.
Read the first two chapters – or listen to the audio above.
What are your honest thoughts about the set-up to this story? Do you read it as a history, or as a parable? What are some of your experiences with suffering – what questions have you asked during those times? What do you think the significance of the scene in heaven brings to this story?
I hope we’ll have an interesting study on this fascinating book!