Job: Israel’s Quest for Theodicy

The lecture commences with a structural overview of the book followed by specific treatments of the following sections of it: the prologue, the speeches of Job and his friends, the Elihu speeches, God’s speeches and the responses of Job and the epilogue. Special attention is paid to the issues concerning the composition of the book, the text and language of the book, the date and authorship, ancient near eastern literature comparable to Job, the book as literature and its message. Within the bourn of this final feature, such aspects are being tackled as: grounds for courage in the face of the mystery of suffering, suffering can deepen the knowledge about God, valuing God’s presence for its own sake, the redemption of God, a challenge to human understanding and reader-response reading of the book of Job. Further topics to be discussed include: the Satan, the Satan’s challenge, suffering as educative, quotations in Job, Job as a translation, words as speech acts, piety and prosperity.