Wrestling with Job: Defiant Faith in the Face of Suffering, By Bill Kynes and Will Kynes
Wrestling with Job
  • Length: 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 6 × 9 in
  • Published: August 30, 2022
  • Imprint: IVP Academic
  • Item Code: A0076
  • ISBN: 9781514000762

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The unique richness of the book of Job cannot be simply explained—it must be experienced. While Job presents challenges for scholars, ministry leaders, and laypeople, it also contains powerful lessons on faith and perseverance in the face of suffering that we all need to hear.

In Wrestling with Job, Bill Kynes, a lifelong pastor, and his son Will Kynes, a Job scholar, guide readers on a journey through this complex text. Each chapter combines exposition, spiritual application, and a deeper look at some of the thornier aspects of the text. Complete with reflection questions for groups or individuals, this book equips anyone wondering how the lessons of Job apply to their own lives to consider how they too might practice defiant faith.

"Written by Bill Kynes, a longtime pastor and preacher, and his son, biblical scholar Will Kynes, Wrestling with Job is filled with insight into the meaning and application of this rich biblical book that means so much to those who experience suffering—namely all of us. This book is a feast for all readers who want to understand Job and what it means for our lives, but I would highlight its importance for clergy whose congregations need to hear what Job has to say to them. Thank you, Bill and Will, for combining your skill and passion for Scripture to illuminate Job's message for us today."

Tremper Longman III, distinguished scholar and professor emeritus of biblical studies at Westmont College, author of How to Read Daniel

"The biblical book of Job takes a hard, honest look at the painful trials all of us suffer. In this exceptional guide to its main interpretations and applications, one of my favorite pastors (Bill Kynes) combines forces with a world-class scholar (Will Kynes) to produce a faith-building book for Bible teachers and the people they serve. Rather than attempting to solve the mysteries of evil and divine sovereignty, Wrestling with Job helps readers persevere through times of spiritual struggle with enduring trust in Almighty God, and in his Son, Jesus Christ."

Philip Ryken, president of Wheaton College

"A unique father-son double act, this challenging and yet nurturing rereading of Job by the Kyneses—one a pastor and the other a scholar—leads to a profound mixture of a personal, pastoral touch and strong scholarly foundations that impart key information for understanding this complex biblical book. Informed by a rich airing of intertexts and imbued with a strong sense of Christian ministry to those who suffer, the book of Job comes to life afresh in these pages with humor, sensitivity, and a deep engagement with Scripture across both testaments."

Katharine Dell, professor of Old Testament literature and theology at the University of Cambridge and fellow of St. Catharine's College, Cambridge

"I don't know many preachers willing to tackle Job. But this book can embolden anyone to teach from one of the Bible's most challenging and rewarding books. The combination of homiletical and exegetical commentary not only addresses concerns about how to teach a series through Job but also answers many of the book's thorniest theological questions. I hope the Kynes duo will give us an encore."

Collin Hansen, vice president of content and editor in chief of The Gospel Coalition and host of the Gospelbound podcast

"The father-son duo of Bill and Will Kynes has produced the rare gem in the Christian book world: a study on Job that is full of scholarly insight yet also down to earth and rich in pastoral wisdom and application for pastor and layperson alike. Beautifully written with engaging discussion questions, it's perfect for small groups. While readers may not have all their why questions answered on the issues of suffering and evil, they will be inspired to persevere with Job-like faith and put their hope in the One who sacrificed all to redeem this fallen world."

Joel S. Woodruff, president of the C. S. Lewis Institute

"True Christian faith has nothing to do with wish fulfillment but everything to do with facing reality, which is why every believer, sooner or later, has to wrestle with Job—and with what Job had to wrestle with: the reality of inequitable suffering. Bill and Will Kynes, pastor-father and scholar-son, have coauthored a precious gift: a wise and edifying twofer that provides not mere 'answers' but guidance for reading Job with understanding, deepening our trust in God, and persevering in our faith, come what may."

Kevin J. Vanhoozer, research professor of systematic theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"Has anything like this ever appeared: a father-son duo teaming up on the book of Job? Even if one heard of such a thing with the hearing of the ear, now the eye can see it—and in the flesh! Across ten chapters covering all of Job, the elder Kynes, a pastor, offers wise ministerial exposition, with the younger Kynes, a biblical scholar, providing profound interpretive commentary. As the authors note, study of Job can be unsettling but, if done patiently and well can, at the end, be challenging and encouraging. I found all that to be true—and then some—in this rich and moving book. I recommend it most highly."

Brent A. Strawn, professor of Old Testament and professor of law at Duke University

"Wrestling with Job is a superb guide to participating in Job's unsettling narrative, adopting Job's posture toward God, and ultimately persevering as Job persevered. Kynes and Kynes bridge the conventional gap between the academy and the pulpit, balancing nuanced commentary and informative exposition with distinctly Christian application. This book is a particularly helpful resource for those who read Job with a defiant faith, honestly challenging God in an effort to make sense of apparent unjust retribution in light of the benevolent character of God. If, like Job, you find yourself asking, 'Why, Lord?' this book will lead you to answers from Job by guiding you to the God of Job."

Dominick S. Hernández, associate professor of Old Testament and Semitics at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University, and author of Proverbs: Pathway to Wisdom

"Wrestling with Job brings together the experience of a seasoned pastor with the expertise of a premier scholar to render the book of Job relatable and approachable for today's readers. The volume's pastoral voice, sensitivity to contemporary questions, and expositional orientation make it a valuable resource for those preparing to preach from this challenging text."

Michelle Knight, assistant professor of Old Testament and Semitic languages at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"This book will nourish your soul by giving you a glimpse of the glory of God. Its pages are filled with rich biblical insight communicated with deep pastoral feeling. I had to stop repeatedly to capture pearls of wisdom that I will pass on to others."

Colin S. Smith, senior pastor of The Orchard, founder and Bible teacher, Open the Bible


Digging Deeper Comments

1. The Book of Job: A Window into a World of Suffering and Faith
2. The Cynic's Taunt (Job 1–2)
3. The Innocent Sufferer (Job 1–3)
4. Cold Comfort (Job 4–27)
5. A Sufferer's Protest (Job 4–27)
6. A Dramatic Aside (Job 28)
7. Job's Closing Argument (Job 29–31)
8. The Mysterious Elihu (Job 32–37)
9. God Speaks (Job 38:1–42:6)
10. Justice After All? (Job 42:7-22)
The Ultimate Epilogue: Job, Jesus, and Our Great Hope

Questions for Reflection or Discussion
Scripture Index


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Bill Kynes

Bill Kynes (PhD, Cambridge) has been the senior pastor at Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church in Annandale, Virginia, since 1986. He is a senior teaching fellow with the C. S. Lewis Institute and a member of the TGC Council and has been a Veritas Forum speaker. His books include A Christology of Solidarity: Jesus as the Representative of His People in Matthew and Seven Pressing Questions: Addressing Critical Issues Confronting Christian Faith. 

Will Kynes

Will Kynes (PhD, Cambridge) is associate professor of biblical studies at Samford University. He has written extensively on the book of Job and wisdom and suffering in the Hebrew Bible. His books include My Psalm Has Turned into Weeping: Job’s Dialogue with the PsalmsAn Obituary for “Wisdom Literature”: The Birth, Death, and Intertextual Reintegration of a Biblical Corpus; and The Oxford Handbook of Wisdom and the Bible.