One day Satan accused God of favoritism. Satan said the reason Job loved God was because God had protected and blessed him. So, God permitted Satan to afflict Job. All of Job's children died, Storms destroyed buildings that he owned. He was afflicted with boils all over his body. Three friends came to visit him. They suggested these horrible things had happened as a punishment for sin. All of these comforters were wrong.
Finally, God spoke to Job. Job challenged God by asking why he was suffering. God answered in Job 38-42. Here are some excerpts:
Job 38:1-4, “Then the LORD answered Job from the whirlwind: ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorant words? Brace yourself like a man, because I have some questions for you, and you must answer them. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you know so much.’” God followed with many more tough, unanswerable questions.
God paused, and again He asked Job, “‘Do you still want to argue with the Almighty? You are God’s critic, but do you have the answers?’ Then Job replied to the LORD, ‘I am nothing–how could I ever find the answers? I will cover my mouth with my hand. I have said too much already. I have nothing more to say.’ Then the LORD answered Job… ‘Will you discredit my justice and condemn me just to prove you are right?’" Job 40:1-8. Then God continued to ask questions through chapters 40 and 41.
Finally, Job repented and replied, “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you. You asked, Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance? It is I–and I was talking about things I knew nothing about, things far too wonderful for me… I take back everything I said, and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.” Job 42:1-6
Job did not act unrighteously when he was suffering. He did not curse God. He continued to honor God. His only error was he questioned God’s wisdom and justice. God rebuked Job for this, but then God rewarded Job:
Job 42:12-13, 16-17, “So the LORD blessed Job in the second half of his life even more than in the beginning. For now, he had 14,000 sheep, 6,000 camels, 1,000 teams of oxen, and 1,000 female donkeys. He also gave Job seven more sons and three more daughters. … Job lived 140 years after that, living to see four generations of his children and grandchildren.”
Job’s life is an allegory. Job pictures mankind. Man was created perfect and blessed. Then Adam sinned and all were plunged into suffering and death. However, in Christ’s kingdom, all mankind will be resurrected and most will recognize the wisdom behind God’s permission of evil. Mankind will be restored to perfection and everlasting life.
For a more detailed study about why God is permitting mankind to suffer, download the free PDF: "Why God Permits Evil"