Job’s Prosperity

What word comes to mind when you think of the life of Job? Trial. Affliction. Suffering. Endurance. Patience. But what about prosperity? The beginning and the conclusion of the book highlight Job’s prosperity. Note the chiastic structure that develops from the book’s introduction and conclusion:

A – Job’s prosperous life (1:1)
B – Job’s prosperous family (1:2)
C – Job’s prosperous wealth (1:3)
D – Job’s priestly mediation for his family (1:4–5)
D’ – Job’s priestly mediation for his friends (42:7–9)
C’ – Job’s abundantly prosperous wealth (42:10–12)
B’ – Job’s abundantly prosperous family (42:13–15)
A’ – Job’s abundantly prosperous life (42:16–17)

And notice the final verse of the book, this sort of epitaph etched on Job’s grave: “Then he died, an old man who had lived a long, full life” (42:17 NLT). Or as James says, “You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy” (James 5:11 NIV). Trials, affliction, suffering, endurance, and patience are all key themes in the book of Job. But we miss something when we fail to see “what the Lord finally brought about.” Which is the OT’s way of saying that God uses trials for our good. To those who love God, affliction is the pathway to blessing (but of course this is no promise of financial wealth).

7 thoughts on “Job’s Prosperity

  1. I was thinking about Job last night in this very context. And yes, the message is that God causes all things to work together for our good. In the midst of awful situations, we can agree with the Gospel write Luke and the archangel Gabriel, Nothing is impossible for God.

  2. Hmmm, seems like I just heard this somewhere recently! I hope you enjoyed the class, Tony. It was a pleasure meeting you. Hope to see you in more classes in the future.

  3. Should sound familiar, Barrett! … It was great getting my first taste of RTS-DC and it was great meeting you. I plan to be back, although not any time soon. Blessings!

  4. Job 42:3 ………
    Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
    things too wonderful for me to know.
    ……………
    5 My ears had heard of you
    but now my eyes have seen you.

    6 Therefore I despise myself
    and repent in dust and ashes.”

    How could we not see this before? It is like common grace is good but the special grace for the truly repentant is greater still – and deeper and wider and higher…..Count as all joy when trials come – James 1:2

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