You have heard of Job’s endurance, James says (James 5:11). Job is the man who had it all and lost it all. His story is so unreal as to be incredible. But the Book of Job cannot be construed as merely an allegory or fictitious example of someone who suffered great pain and loss but continued, somehow, to hold on to his faith in God. Neither is it an abstract treatise on the nature of suffering, its causes and effects. If Job were not a real person who lived in real time, his story would have little power to aid the rest of us.
Did Job, in fact, keep his faith? He complained bitterly; he argued vehemently; he scorned answers given him by friends. He felt abandoned and betrayed by God who seemed to be toying mercilessly with his moral uprightness when he should have been rewarding it. If this is not enough to indicate serious failure of faith, Job, at several junctures, wished he were dead or, better yet, that he’d never been born. Can we say that a man who curses the day of his birth (Job 3:1ff) has faith?
Job held on, yes, but did he hold on to faith?