One of the main themes of the Psalms and the Wisdom literature (Proverbs, Job, Ecclesiastes, Lamentations, etc.) is the problem of human suffering. Describe some of the major ways these books deal...

One of the main themes of the Psalms and the Wisdom literature (Proverbs, Job, Ecclesiastes, Lamentations, etc.) is the problem of human suffering. Describe some of the major ways these books deal with this problem. Do you find any of their answers compelling? Why or why not?

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Dayna Watsica eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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The issue of suffering is a problem for all people, philosophies, and religions. Therefore, no one tradition will offer a perfect answer for all people. That said, I believe wisdom literature offers one of the best answers, if not the best answer. Let me give you a few examples.

First, the psalmist does not ignore suffering. Many of the psalms are complaints of human suffering. For example, Psalm 22, probably the most famous psalm, opens with these words:

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish? My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, but I find...

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