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This book openly reveals Job's existential struggles to throw off the logic of a reward based mentality that believes God must be good to us, and give us "things". Job's lesson is precisely the opposite; God owes us nothing, but gives us a life in which there is great risk, much suffering, vulnerability, and the possibility of a bold faced affirmation of living in relationship with the divine. In, At the Scent of Water, Gerald Janzen follows Job's journey from prosperity, through calamity and bitter anguish, to an encounter with God's presence in a rainstorm that renews the earth and his own appetite for life.
In this remarkable rereading of the biblical book of Job often discussed as an attempt to justify the ways of God to man” J. Gerald Janzen brings new light to Job’s story, showing how God invites Job to give up the traditional logic of reward-punishment for a life-affirming strategy of risk-reward. From this perspective, affirmation of life in the face of all its vulnerabilities is the path to true participation in the mystery of existence. / At the Scent of Water traces Job’s journey from prosperity, through calamity and bitter anguish, to an encounter with God’s presence in a rainstorm that renews the earth and his own appetite for life. / Janzen includes a candid epilogue on his own struggle with aggressive prostate cancer, which enabled him to connect personally with Job and to find a fresh and illuminating grace. At the Scent of Water will especially resonate with any readers who have experienced grief or suffering.
J. Gerald Janzen is MacAllister-Petticrew Emeritus Professor of Old Testament at Christian Theological Seminary, Indianapolis.