The book of Job begins, “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” Verse 6 sets the stage: “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.” KJV God asks Satan if, during his travels about the earth, he has observed any as perfect, upright and God-fearing as Job. Satan answers that is because God has blessed Job and Job knows he needs to please God. Satan says that if Job were to lose all he had, he would curse God. God tells Satan Job is in his hands to “touch all he has,” but not Job, himself. Here is the story as told through artists’ eyes.
Satan Going Forth From the Presence of God BLAKE
See http://www.blakearchive.org/blake/images/but550.1.5.wc.300.jpg for the source of the photograph of the above watercolor painting. It would appear that Blake is showing that Satan has fallen from the presence of the “sons of God” who remain in the heavenly presence of their father, to descend to earth to touch Job with great misfortune to test Job. Two angels, distinguished from the “sons of God” by their wings, look on as witnesses.
Job 1:13-21 tells us that in rapid succession messengers come to Job to tell him his children have died and he has lost his wealth. When Job does not curse God, God sees Satan again and notes Job’s faithfulness. “Skin for skin!” Satan replies. “A man will give all he has for his own life. 5 But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face.” God says, very well then, but spare his life. So Satan inflicts Job with painful boils over his body, which he scrapes. Job 2:9, 10 tells us, “His wife says to him, ‘Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die!’ He replies, ‘You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?’ In all this, Job does not sin in what he said.” NIV
Job Ridiculed by his Wife DE LA TOUR (1593 – 1652)
See http://www.artbible.info/art/large/135.html for the source of the above photograph of the painting and a brief description.
The Trials of Job Leonaert BRAMER (1630’s)
See http://www.lib-art.com/artgallery/22633-the-trials-of-job-bramer-leonaert.html for the source of the photograph of the drawing. Bramer takes literally that Job is mourning on a dung heap.
Job’s Comforters BLAKE
See http://www.blakearchive.org/blake/images/but550.1.7.wc.300.jpg for the source of the above photograph of the watercolor painting.
Job’s Despair BLAKE
See http://www.blakearchive.org/blake/images/but550.1.8.wc.300.jpg for a source of the photograph of the above watercolor painting.
Job Rebuked by his Friends BLAKE
See http://www.artbible.info/art/large/636.html for the source of the above photograph of the etching.
Job Confessing His Presumptions to God Who Answers from the Whirlwind BLAKE
See http://www.backtoclassics.com/gallery/williamblake/jobconfessinghispresumptiontogodwhoanswersfromthewhirlwind/ for the source of the above photograph of the watercolor painting.
The Lord Answering Job out of the Whirlwind BLAKE
See http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:The_Lord_Answering_Job_Out_of_the_Whirlwind_Butts_set.jpg for the source of the above photograph of the watercolor painting.
Scenes from the Life of Job UNKNOWN Flemish Painter (1480-90)
See http://www.lib-art.com/artgallery/17752-scenes-from-the-life-of-job-flemish-unknown-master.html for the source of the above photograph of the painting. I find the other-worldly, grotesque creatures and even the setting remarkably similar to that found in the slightly later paintings of Hieronymus Bosch from that region, the Netherlands.
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