Jesus is not Zeus. He was a sinless man not a sinless superman. He woke up with bed-head. He had pimples at thirteen. He never would have appeared on the cover of Men’s Health (he had “no beauty that we should desire him” Isa 53:2). He came as a normal man to normal men. He knows what it is to be thirsty, hungry, despised, rejected, scorned, shamed, embarasses, abandoned, misunderstood, falsely accused, suffocated, tortured and killed. His friends abandoned when he need them most; had he lived today, every last Twitter follower and Facebook friend who have un-friended him when he turned thirty-three – he who will never un-friend us.
If you ask people who don’t believe in God why they don’t, the number one reason will be suffering. If you ask people who believe in God when they grew most spiritually, the number one answer will be suffering.
The book of Job is not so much about why God allows suffering as it is about how we should respond to suffering. To use the technical, theological terms, it is more theophany (appearance of God in the midst of suffering) than theodicy (theological explanation of suffering).
The book of Job demonstrates once and for all that sin and suffering are not necessarily directly connected to an individual’s sin or lack of sin. The whole point of the book of Job is that, although Job is not perfect (13:26; 14:17), it was not Job’s sin that caused his suffering. Job was ‘blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil’ (1:1).J