Who was the author? The book of Job does not specifically identify its author. Some speculate that a wisdom teacher, the real Job, or possibly even Moses wrote the book, but the best answer may be that the Holy Spirit worked through one or several people.
What is the book? One of the wisdom writings, the book of Job is the Divinely-inspired and revealed account of God's permitting Satan to test Job's faith and how Job's four friends tried to comfort him, until at last God spoke to Job directly.
Where was it written? The book was most-likely written in Israel.
When was it written? Although the events may have occurred as early as the period of the patriarchs or during the time of the Judges, they were likely not written down until later, perhaps during the time of Solomon.
Why? The book of Job does not advance the narrative of salvation history, but, like Ruth and Esther, it gives us an episode in the life of one of God's people that anticipates God's salvation in Jesus Christ and provides insights into otherwise hidden aspects of our lives under the cross.
How? In a series of dialogues, or speeches, with his friends, Job's confession of faith, despite his affliction, speaks of God's promised Mediator, Advocate, Atoner, and Redeemer. The surrounding narrative reports activities in God's heavenly throne room, where initially Satan intrudes into the relationship between God and His people, but in the end Satan, Job's friends, and Job Himself are silenced as God's final Word, of righteousness by grace through faith increased by suffering, perseveres.
For further reading on the book of Job:
- Keil, C.F. and F. Delitzsch. Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament, Volume IV: Job, translated by Francis Bolton and published as two volumes in one. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, reprinted August 1985. (This volume has a total of 915 pages.)
- Kretzmann, Paul E. Popular Commentary of the Bible: The Old Testament, Volume II, The Poetical and the Prophetical Books. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1924. (This volume, one that is in our Grace library, has 59 pages on Job.)