The chief character in what many critics consider the most beautifully written book in the Bible. The author is unknown. From internal evidence it is speculated that he was an Israelite who wrote between 600 and 400 B.C. The Book of Job is a profound philosophic discussion of human suffering, with Job and several of his friends taking turns offering possible solutions to the problem of good and evil. Their efforts to find an answer to determine Yahweh's reasons for permitting such indignities to afflict a faithful believer were fruitless. Job and his friends realized the fatuousness of the popular belief that goodness and evil are rewarded in this life. Ultimately, there remains the dominant theme: faith in God must endure even when reason and understanding fail (Book of Job).