In these passages, Job verbally spars with his friend Zophar regarding how God deals with the righteous and the wicked. Job observed that even the wicked live comfortably and they prosper. God does not seem to punish them. Then, Zophar told Job that God will not punish a righteous person as Job was being punished. He was suggesting that Job had not lived rightly. It would appear that both observations are correct. So then, what are we to conclude?
King David wrote in one of his Psalms that he was envious of the wicked who seemed to prosper, until he went into the Temple to pray. Then, God gave David insight that revealed the future plight of the wicked. The wicked who are unrepentant and do not fear God are on a slippery slope to destruction. They do not perceive it. They have no motivation to change their evil ways, and they mock believers who suffer in this world.
Indeed, those who are headed for Heaven will suffer in this world as they attempt to walk the path of righteousness. God tests them, and God chastises them for wrongdoing just as a father chastises his child. If we are at ease and not being tested, perhaps we should be concerned that God does not consider us His child. The Bible tells us to ’examine ourselves to see if we are in the Faith.’ This is good advice.