Is ‘Job’ a form of torture?

| Linda Brown | Word & Idioms



While researchers struggle with the origin of the word Job, I suggest we examine the Biblical Book Of Job.

In the bible, Job is a righteous man blessed with good health, great wealth, and a loving family. In response to the Lord praises Job for his religious devotion, Satan, a.k.a the devil, suggests that Job serves God passionately just because he blessed with a good life. To prove Satan wrong, God permits him to strip Job not only of his wealth, but also his children, and his physical health. Everything but his wife.

His sheep die and then his camels are stolen and then his ten children are buried alive in a terrible sand storm, but even after all that and being infected with painful skin disease, Job remains faithful to God.

After successfully passing this faith torture-test, God reimburses Job with wealth, health, and new children.

Is the connection between the biblical Job and the modern term just a mere coincidence? – the word work in Spanish is Trabajo and in french its travail. Both words stem the Latin term tripalium which was a common instrument of torture consisting of three stakes.


If you still haven’t thought about it yourself, the word labor may refer to work or childbirth…


A man tortured on a tripalium (Wikimeida Commns)