Sunday, November 4, 2012

Job 39

Today's reading in our daily plan is Job 39. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • In this chapter, God continues his response to Job. God uses the animals he created in his words to Job here. God mentions mountain goats, deer, wild donkeys, oxen, ostrich, horse, hawks and eagles.
  • God asks Job repeatedly if he created the animals, or if they obey Job, or if he watches over them and provides for them. It’s interesting that God doesn’t just ask Job if he created the animals but also goes as far as to describe the way he gave some animals wisdom and how he wired them to think.
  • In this first section, God is using the natural world to show Job that he knew little of the world God created. Sure Job was a learned man but there was still much more that lies beyond him. The same is true for us today. God is also showing Job that he alone is the creator and sustainer of all created things.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
  • It’s interesting that God answers all of Job’s questions with his own questions rather than answers. Is it not? However, it is by these questions that God lowers himself to get personal with a man he clearly loved. God could have just ignored Job or even quickly answered his questions but instead, himself takes up the role of a skeptic and rationalizes with Job in what seems like an intellectual duel. Job had asked God to come to court and present him with an indictment. God accepted but instead asked the right to cross-examine. Another interesting note is that Jesus often used this methodology of asking questions to those who came with their own questions while he was on earth. 
  • Job was overwhelmed with mysteries he couldn’t answer but through it all, he came to realize what is too good to simply be told; that God knows what he is doing in his universe. Job had many questions for God as we all do. But instead of God trying to prove that it is an explainable world; he insisted that it is stranger than Job had ever imagined. Yet in all the strangeness there is beauty and joy and opposition to evil. Job could not understand what God was doing in his life, and God was telling him the created world is just as difficult to rationalize.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
  • We have many questions and doubts of our own, especially in times of pain, but we must learn to put our trust in God for he understands that which we don’t and he understands that which we never even think to question. This is what God was showing Job with his questions and what we must learn ourselves. This is a truth that is an especially painful reminder for me today. Today is the 4 year anniversary of my wife and I losing one of our children before they were born. It's a tough day and one that still brings a sharp pain to my heart, but this truth God was showing Job in chapter 39 is one I learned through that great pain we suffered. God is a good God and because of that, we can put our trust in him even when we don't understand the pain we are feeling. What do you need to trust to God today? Ask him to help you. Remember he is a good God and has a better plan for your life than you could ever possibly imagine for yourself.