Beyond What We Know
Father, it’s easy to look at the creation, or other people, and feel insignificant, but I know I’m highly valued by You.
Read JOB 38:1-30
 Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:  “Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge?  Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.  “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand.  Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?  On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone-  while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?  “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb,  when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness,  when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place,  when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’?  “Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place,  that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it?  The earth takes shape like clay under a seal; its features stand out like those of a garment.  The wicked are denied their light, and their upraised arm is broken.  “Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recesses of the deep?  Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the gates of the deepest darkness?  Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this.  “What is the way to the abode of light? And where does darkness reside?  Can you take them to their places? Do you know the paths to their dwellings?  Surely you know, for you were already born! You have lived so many years!  “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail,  which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle?  What is the way to the place where the lightning is dispersed, or the place where the east winds are scattered over the earth?  Who cuts a channel for the torrents of rain, and a path for the thunderstorm,  to water a land where no one lives, an uninhabited desert,  to satisfy a desolate wasteland and make it sprout with grass?  Does the rain have a father? Who fathers the drops of dew?  From whose womb comes the ice? Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens  when the waters become hard as stone, when the surface of the deep is frozen? Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectHow would you describe God's reply to Job here?
At last, God speaks! Job expects God to answer him, to affirm his innocence and vindicate him to his friends. Instead, it is God who asks the questions. He does not address Job’s suffering, but asks the sort of questions to which there are no answers (e.g. vs. 8,22,24). How can there be? Only God can do these things.
The beautiful poetry of this passage should not hide the enormous power of God in creation (6,7). God is God of the entire universe, not just the Earth. Our ideas of God are often much too small. When we look at the stars at night or into a blue sky, we cannot see the ends of the universe; it is far too vast and distant. But God is there (e.g. vs. 12,17,19), present throughout his creation and, wonderfully, he is also very close to us as our Father. It’s almost too much for our finite minds to take in!
Imagine you have been suffering as Job has. What would be your answer to God’s questions in this passage?
Almighty God, how powerful and wonderful You truly are! I can only bow before You in wonder and worship.
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