Job, Jonah Essay

Pages: 3 (1155 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 4  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Mythology - Religion

Job, Jonah, Egypt

THE BOOK OF JOB

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The Book of Job is subject to disagreement over the date of its composition, although Hartley in the Eerdmans commentary notes that its relation to other Old Testament books justifies "placing this work in the seventh century B.C." (Hartley 20). The author of the book is not identified. The genre of the book is wisdom literature, although unlike other wisdom books in the Old Testament (like Proverbs and Ecclesiastes), Job has an overall framing narrative told in prose, while the main body of the text are speeches in Hebrew poetry. The basic subject, though, is why bad things happen to good people -- a standard subject in theology, built on the question of how to justify God's ways to mankind. The story is simple: Job is a man well-known for his righteousness. Satan approaches God and suggests that perhaps Job's piety is solely due to God's having given all sorts of advantages: take these away, Satan suggests, and accordingly he will curse God. As a result, Satan is permitted by God to take away Job's riches, kill his children, and cover his body with agonizing boils: Job refuses to curse God. His three so-called friends come, to suggest that Job must be paying for some terrible sin. The book then describes poetically the nature of wisdom, and finally Job demands an explanation from God. God answers Job from a whirlwind by ignoring the question and proclaiming his own might and omnipotence. Job repents of having second-guessed God, and in conclusion God restores to him all of his wealth, cures the boils, gives him new children, and allows him to live to a ripe old age.

JONAH

Essay on Job, Jonah, Egypt Assignment

Jonah is an Old Testament prophet whose active dates are established through his single mention in 2 Kings 14:25, but also is the main subject of his own book, the Book of Jonah. 2 Kings declares he was from Gath-Hepher, which is close to Nazareth. He was active during the reign of the 8th century Israelite king Jeroboam son of Jehoash (not to be confused with the much earlier Jeroboam who led the rebellion against Rehoboam) who had a forty-one year rule, roughly from the 780s to the 740s BC. Thus Jonah's other contemporaries among Old Testament prophets were those active during the reign of Jeroboam II -- these are Hosea, Joel, and Amos. All four of these are numbered among the "twelve minor prophets" of the Old Testament. The single mention of Jonah in 2 Kings notes that Jeroboam II's restoration of Israel's borders was in fulfillment of a prophecy made by Jonah during his reign.

The larger importance of Jonah rests upon the Book of Jonah, which was probably written substantially after Jonah's actual lifetime. Leslie Allen in the Eerdmans commentary on Jonah notes that "the date of the book of Jonah is by no means easy to determine" and that "although it has often been assumed that Jonah was the author, the narrative is in fact anonymous and has no direct reference to an author" while "some clues…point to a later date" (Allen 185-6). The general consensus puts the date somewhere between the mid-sixth and mid-fourth centuries BC. The Book of Jonah is short, only 4 chapters long, and basically consists of two related stories. God calls to Jonah to preach to the city of Nineveh that He is angered by the wickedness of the inhabitants. Jonah decides to disobey God… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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