James says: “My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord — that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.” (5:10-11)
Three things: First, it seems fairly straightforward that James is identifying Job as one of the prophets. Second, the mark of a prophet according to James is suffering and patience, waiting for the compassion and mercy of the Lord to be revealed. Prophets wait and endure. The office of prophet is an office of maturity, an office of old age, having waited, having endured, having persevered. Last, all of this reinforces a very positive reading of Job. Whatever Job did, whatever his beef was, he spoke what was right as God finally declared in the conclusion of the story. His perseverance and endurance, his refusal to back down from the argument, that’s all a model of faithfulness. Consider the faithful example of Job, who stubbornly refused to shut up for 30 chapters.
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