King James Bible, James 5:11

Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.

James thought Job was a patient man.

New King James Version, Job 21:4

“As for me, is my complaint against man? And if it were, why should I not be impatient?

Was Job being impatient here?

  • Does it say Job was complaining to men? Then he would have reason to be impatient. Implied is that he isn’t complaining to men and hence not impatient Aug 30, 2020 at 15:33

1 Answer 1


The context of James chapter 5 verses 7 to 12 has to do with patience in suffering. Also, the NIV translation speaks of Job's perseverance, not patience. Yes, Job persevered in the face of suffering - he endured, but no, he was not patient.

Job 16:1-3 is a prime example of Job's impatience with his so-called comforters. He railed against them and their long-winded speeches.

As for the context of Job 21:4, Job's complaint is against God because Job perceived that God was responsible for his suffering. Yet Job could not understand why he was being made to suffer.

As to the Christians to whom James wrote, he was asking them to be patient in the face of suffering (James 5:10). James was admonishing them to persevere, just like Job.

Job was patient in the face of all the suffering he endured, but there were moments when his impatience got the better of him. The ESV translation of James 5:11 puts it this way:

Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.

  • 1
    Excellent answer. The word here is ὑπομονή (hupomoné) which is patient endurance, perseverance. +1.
    – Dottard
    Aug 30, 2020 at 21:52

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