The last two verses of the Book of Job tell us that after his ordeal, “Job lived 140 years. And so he died, old and full of years.”
On July 20, 1969, the first man landed on the moon. One spring morning about the year A.D. 33 the first New Man landed on the earth. His spaceship was a tomb, and He left His pressurized linen suit inside and walked out into a garden.
“I desire to speak to the Almighty and to argue my case with God” (Job 13:3). Job really believes that if he summons God, God will appear and answer him. This is astounding.
People like to ask, “What kind of a God lets little children suffer?” Really they are asking, “What kind of a God lets children suffer before they are even old enough to know the comfort of faith?”
“God has made me his target; his archers surround me.” (Job 16:12)
In Renaissance art one of the most commonly portrayed martyrdoms was that of St. Sebastian. The sight of this great lover of God with his body riddled with bloodied arrows is a shocking one, as the artists intended it to be. Yet how much more shocking it is to state, as Job does, that God Himself is the cruel archer who so tortures His own saints to death.
If only there were someone to arbitrate between us,
to lay his hand upon us both,
someone to remove God’s rod from me,
so that his terror would frighten me no more. (Job 9:33-4)
The Gospel According To Job is a book that grew out of a time of deep depression in my life. It took five years to write, and it came as a great surprise when at the end of that time I was more depressed than ever!