Job: Understanding God
Synopsis Job 38:12-41 7/28/2021
After Elihu had finished challenging Job, God revealed Himself directly to Job and his friends. In this encounter, God posed a litany of questions to expose Job’s limited understanding. For example, he asked Job if he was present at the creation. But he also asked Job more mundane questions like whether or not Job understood where snow comes from.
Of course, Job did not know the answers to any of God’s questions. So, at that moment, Job experienced a subtle irony. He had demanded God’s attention. And his intention was to question God. But when God gave him and audience, he felt overwhelmed.
Understanding God the Creator
Job suffered great physical and emotional pain. Unable to escape the torment of his pain, he sought some reason that might explain the purpose of his suffering. He did this because the seeming lack of purpose made his suffering even more painful and unbearable.
And yet, even as He addressed Job, God did not tell His purpose. Specifically, God did not reveal that the devil had caused Job’s ordeal in order to test his faithfulness.
Of course, if God had revealed this, then the challenge of proving the devil wrong would have appealed to Job’s pride. Thus, Job would have focused on defeating the devil. But that was not God’s purpose. God does not need to prove Himself or His creation to the devil.
Instead, this slight misdirection of Job’s motivation would have undermined the work that God intended to do in Job’s heart. He wanted Job’s absolute abandon, even if that meant Job would never rationally understand his circumstances.
Abandon to the Creator God
Utter abandon to the God of all Creation – this is the work.
Therefore I praised joy, because there is nothing better for mortals under the sun than to eat and to drink and to be joyful; this will accompany them in their toil through the limited days of life God gives them under the sun. I applied my heart to know wisdom and to see the business that is done on earth, though neither by day nor by night do one’s eyes see sleep, and I saw all the work of God: No mortal can find out the work that is done under the sun. However much mortals may toil in searching, no one finds it out; and even if the wise claim to know, they are unable to find it out.” Eccl 8:15-17