These are the chapters we’ve been waiting for! (Job 38:1-40:5) Throughout our study of Job we have had to wade through the murky waters of chapters 1-37. The story of Job is one that doesn’t make a lot of sense to our human understanding, except that most of us can relate to him on some level. We’ve all experienced grief and tragedy and suffering and pain. Beyond that, we’ve all experienced those times when it feels like God is so far away. We know in our heads that he has not moved, but our hearts sometimes feel so far away from him and he just seems so silent.
But He doesn’t remain silent forever. Here in Job, God has let the drama continue long enough. Job and his friends have been spinning round and round debating the cause of Job’s suffering. They’ve been accusing Job and Job has been defending himself, over and over again. Now it’s God’s turn to speak and when he does, Job is left speechless.
Now is a good time to remind you that this is definitely not a portion of Scripture that we can read selfishly. Remember, this is a book ABOUT GOD. These chapters will drive that point home, potentially more than any other portion of Scripture.
Read Job 38:1-11. All the way through verse 15 God questions Job about Creation. Of course the answer to every one of these questions is that Job was not there at all. And it’s a rhetorical question anyway – God knew this. He is sovereign over all.
God continues this round of questioning in Job 38:16-38 by asking Job questions about the weather. Read Job 38:22-27. We get such beautiful pictures of places we know nothing about. Of course God knew that we would discover many things in our scientific quest for understanding. So he gave us verse 36 in there to remind us that even the things we know, we understand because of the wisdom and understanding he has given to us.
Once you consider all of creation, the fact that God made it all and controls it all, you’d think that would be enough to put us properly in our places. But no, God continues with this questioning and Job remains silent. Next he asks Job to consider the animal kingdom in Job 38:39-39:30. Read Job 39:1-4 and 26-30. God reveals his sovereignty over all of the animals – the fact that he knows when the mountain goat gives birth is amazing! Have you been following the story of April, the giraffe that everyone has been watching? They’ve installed a camera in her pen at the zoo to show us all the exact moment when she gives birth, but the problem is that she hasn’t yet and it’s been several weeks. They keep saying it’s coming soon and the whole world wants to see, but it’s obvious that none of us are in control of any of that because people have been watching and waiting for days and have found absolutely nothing!
But here’s the most interesting part to me. This is the part where God asks Job about the lion’s prey and the hawk feeding its young. We like to focus on the fact that God is tenderly taking care of his animals, but we can miss the fact that he’s using some of them for food! The lion’s prey most likely did not die of “natural causes”, but was viciously attacked and eaten up by a pride of hungry lions! Does that mean that God is not a good, good father? Of course not! The little eagle babies that are high in the nest waiting for their daddy to bring them some food are delighted to suck up the blood of their prey! That blood came from an animal that God created, an animal that God was watching with the same amount of care as he watched those eaglets. From this we learn the truth that the suffering that we experience does not change the very nature of God. He is still good. He is still sovereign. Sometimes we’re the predator and sometimes we’re the prey and either way God is still very much sovereign on his throne and his love for us has not changed. Beautiful.
After this in Job 40:1-5 God gives Job a chance to speak. But again Job remains speechless. He’s gotten the point that after all this debating who’s right and who’s wrong and who’s sinful and who’s righteous, he is left with the answer that he can never be wise or righteous enough to God. God is so sovereign, omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent that to even consider saying anything “right” about himself is just silly. Job is properly put in his place.
So I want us to end this session just thinking about how awesome God is and how little we are, even on our best days.
Read Colossians 1:15-23.
Now watch this: Laminin
And now watch this:
How great is our God!!!