God Speaks (Part 2)
Scripture: Job 40:6–40:24, Job 41:1–41:34
Key Truth: We don’t possess the attributes or control necessary to govern the world in wisdom and justice but God does which should make us humble and reverent in questioning Him.
Q: What is your view of God’s governance of the world?
“Whereas the first speech addresses the issue of God’s gracious and just maintenance of the world, the second looks at the cosmic dimensions of Job’s plight. In the first speech Yahweh emphasized that he put justice in the fabric of the created order. In the second speech Yahweh demonstrates that he has the power to execute his justice. In God power and justice are not at odds as they are in human beings. In him they are complementary qualities that accomplish the greatest good for the entire world."
John E. Hartley, The Book of Job
God’s Second Invitation: Of Dressing for Action and Saving Yourself
“…Yahweh’s question amounts to saying: Do you persist in staying locked into a world of easy explanations? Are you going to dispute my right to control what comes upon you? Are you trying to imprison my free and gratuitous love in your theological concepts? Do you want to make yourself judge over my actions? In that kind of universe, God would not be God.”
Gustavo Gutierrez, On Job: God-Talk and the Suffering of the Innocent
Q: What attributes are required to govern this world well? Do you possess these attributes?
Behemoth: Of First Works and Control:
“Just as we cannot control the [Behemoth], though it is part of God’s creation, so we cannot control or even understand some of the deep questions of human suffering. There are some things which have, by their very nature, to be left within the mystery of God.”
David Atkinson, The Message of Job
Q: Do you struggle with wanting ultimate control? What evidences that you are not in control? What evidences that you should not have ultimate control?
Leviathan: Of False Hope and the King of the Sons of Pride:
“If even the most courageous man would not be so insane as to stir up Leviathan, how could anyone be so foolhardy as to stand up against God, as Job has done? We can feel the force of this as a warning against irreverence.”
Frances I. Andersen, Job: Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries
Q: How do we know when our questioning of God has become irreverent and unhealthy?
Job 40:6-41:34 teaches us that:
- we don’t possess the necessary attributes to govern this world with wisdom and justice
-we can’t control benign forces much less malevolent forces, which evidence our limitedness
-our limitedness should keep us humble and reverent in our questioning of God
“The argument, then, is that if Job is to charge God with injustice, he must do so from the secure stance of his own superior justice; and if he cannot subdue these beasts, let alone the cosmic forces they represent, he does not enjoy such a stance, and is therefore displaying extraordinary arrogance to call God’s justice into question.”
D.A. Carson, How Long, O Lord? Reflections on Suffering and Evil