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Asbury Bible Commentary – I. Title And Canonical Placement
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I. Title And Canonical Placement

I. Title And Canonical Placement

This book bears the name of its hero, Job. The inclusion of Job in the canon is secure. A larger issue is its location in the OT. In the Hebrew Bible, Job is located in the last of the three divisions, the Sacred Writings, or Hagiographa. The Hagiographa is a diverse and complex corpus. Job, Psalms, and Proverbs are juxtaposed, appearing as a tripartite whole. In the various arrangements of the Hagiographa, the book of Psalms always stands first, but the positions of Job and Proverbs are interchangeable. Uncertainty about the date of the hero, Job, kept the book from heading this trio. Its poetic form and the nature of its materials caused it to be a part of this indivisible group (Dhorme, IX).

In the Greek texts, the location of Job ranges from the end of the OT to a position between Psalms and Proverbs. In our English Bible it is the eighteenth book and the first in a corpus of five books known as Books of Poetry. Since Job is primarily poetic in form, its location here is understandable. The literary genre of Job is critical to its interpretation.