Re-Reading Job: Interview with Michael Austin

This is part of the DR Book Collection.

Image result for rereading job“The phrase “the patience of Job” has become idiomatic among people who have never opened a Bible.”1 So says Michael Austin in his Re-reading Job: Understanding the Ancient World’s Greatest PoemHe explains that

the Book of Job contains two fundamentally incompatible stories about a man named Job. The first Job story, which predates the biblical book by as much as 500 years, was a common Near Eastern folk tale about a guy who loses everything yet never complains to his god. The second Job story is a Hebrew poem that challenges many of the assumptions of the folk tale by having its supposedly complacent hero abandon all pretense of patience and complain, in excruciating detail, about his god (pg. 4).

Austin takes us through the book, laying bare the contradictions, the tensions, and the profound wisdom within its pages. Austin provides the historical and cultural background, but his literary analysis is where he shines the brightest. An excellent resource for understanding one of the most well-known (and least understood) books of the Bible, especially (but not strictly) from an LDS perspective.

You can listen to an interview with Austin here.