When Life is Unfair

When Life is Unfair

Though he slay me, I will hope in him . . . Job 13:15

Most of my suffering has been self-inflicted, so I’m not well versed in what to say when bad things happen unfairly. If anyone ever suffered in a way that seems unjust (to me) though, it was Job, who endured incredible loss, precisely because he lived such a righteous life. Satan singled Job out for torment, insisting that he would abandon God in his agony.

Job though, never got to know the reason for his suffering, which in the end, may be the greatest lesson of Job. In the book, Job’s friends and family pontificate prodigiously – for more than 30 chapters –  insisting that Job must have done something to incur God’s wrath.

Through it all, Job maintained his innocence and his faith. Though he mourned, questioned and objected, he never cursed God and he never wavered in his trust. Job insisted that God is God and that He has the right to give and take. Though He slay me, I will hope in Him.

Still, Job wanted to know why. I will argue my ways to his face (Job 13:15). Job was immensely frustrated that he suffered for no reason and he longed to argue his case before God. He got that chance.

In the final chapters of the book, God answered Job, admonishing him an epic scolding. When Job demanded to know the why, God turned the tables, asking Job who he was to tell God what to do. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the Earth (Job 38:4)?

Job’s protests crumbled under God’s interrogation. I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know (Job 42:3). Faced with God’s omnipotence and omniscience, Job accepted that he didn’t get to demand an answer. Like all giants of the faith, he realized that faith meant trusting God, even in hard times.

We all face suffering in this life – some more than others – and we all die. Life will seem unfair and we are never guaranteed to know why. How and when we die though, is much less important, in the grand scheme of things, than the nature of our relationship with God when we meet Him.

Though Job maintained his faith and though God restored him, the only why Job ever got, was that God is God and that he must hope in Him, no matter what. This is hard, but this is faith.



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  1. Larry says:


  2. Charles Causey says:

    Scott, very good. Loved the last few paragraphs. This seems like the advanced elective on Christianity 101. Letting God be God. He seems to have unfairly allowed Job to be targeted in the beginning of the story, and then doesn’t put up with any discussion from man as to why what He might have done seemed unfair, and unGodlike. For me, I trust God now, and i hope I will have the same trust in Him even if I go through a mass calamity. I guess I won’t know until I get there. I can agree intellectually that God is God and I must allow Him to rule in my life, but until tested like Job, I will never know my repsonse. This post lends to a lot of discussion…I have more to say but have already rambled too much. God bless, brother!

    • Scott says:

      I feel a little fraudulent, expounding on the immense suffering of Job. I hope that I learn faith now so that when tested, I too can say “Though He slay me, I hope in Him.”
      Thanks brother!

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