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“Job” and the Problem of Evil


The Problem of Evil

Job is a blameless and rich man with ten children. One day, God boasts about Job’s righteousness to Satan, who is unimpressed. “God allows Satan to take his wealth, children, and health. Throughout the book, Job

“It is all one; therefore I say,

he destroys both the blameless and the wicked.” (9.22 - 24)

The problem of evil is a unique concern for believers of a benevolent and all-powerful God.

If God was not omnipotent, then they may not be able to prevent the suffering of the innocent. The forces of nature may overwhelm god. Or, if God is one among many, then innocent suffering could be collateral due to the whims of the gods, as is seen throughout the Iliad.

If God was not benevolent or didn’t exist, then there is no expectation that the evil will perish or the good will be blessed.

Thus, believers in a benevolent and all-powerful God must explain how the The theological discussion in Job are subtle and comprehensive.

The existence of the book of Job implies that the writers had been monotheistic for some time by the time it was written, and had thought through the various aspects of the problem of evil in detail.

Age of the Book

Cultural References


Job is unaware of the existence of Heaven.


Textual Analysis:


A mortal, born of woman, few of days and full of trouble

comes up like a flower and withers,

flees like a shadow and does not last. (14.1)