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The book of, a book in the OT classed among the Writings, situated between the historical and prophetic books in English Bibles. A major example of wisdom literature, the book of Job explores the questions of undeserved suffering and the nature and purpose of human piety through conversations between Job and his so-called friends and divine speeches.

Outline of Contents


I. Prose prologue: Job’s calamity (Job 1-2)

II. Job’s opening soliloquy (Job 3)

III. Dialogues with friends (Job 4-27)

A. First cycle of dialogues (Job 4-14)

B. Second cycle of dialogues (Job 15-21)

C. Third cycle of dialogues (Job 22-27)

IV. Monologues (Job 28-37)

A. Meditation on the inaccessibility of wisdom (Job 28)

B. Job’s concluding soliloquy and oath (Job 29-31)

C. The “inspired” utterance of Elihu (Job 32-37)

V. Dialogues with God (Job 38:1-42:6)

A. God’s first answer from the whirlwind (Job 38:1-40:2)

B. Job’s first response (Job 40:3-5)

C. God’s second answer (Job 40:6-41:34)

D. Job’s second response (Job 42:1-6)

VI. Prose epilogue: Job’s restoration (Job 42:7-17)

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.