When Words Fail

The Book of Job
The meaning of the book of Job is found in the privileged voice of God in the divine speech(es) of Job, in chapters 38-41. Job’s reply to the divine speech (“I had heard of you by the hearing of the ears, but now my eye has seen you”) tells the reader the effect of God’s speech on Job, but the book never explicitly tells the reader why or how the divine speech satisfied Job. I argue that the paternal and maternal metaphors used by the Lord to describe his relationship with both animate and inanimate creation allow Job to “know God” in a way he had not previously known Him: as a father. Job was then able to once again trust God and became for the reader a paradigm of faith and piety.