每日诗歌: Above All (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvB-SfVRzOg)
Job 40 [Read]
Job 41 [Read]
Job 42 [Read]
Acts 15:22-41 [Read]
The ending of Job is perplexing to me. God did speak and silence Job, but there was really no answer to the questions everyone had been wondering: why did Job suffer? Are we supposed to think that Job would completely forget about the 10 children he lost in disaster simply because he got another 10? I have my reservation. However, a couple of reflections I’d like to note.
First, “my ears had heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you” (Job 42:5). Job certainly did not see God in a visual sense, for he would be dead then. What exactly did Job see? The Hebrew word here is the most common word used for seeing with eyes, but it does carry metaphorical meaning sometimes (Isa 6:10, 52:10). Seeing probably means understanding here. Job finally understood that there were things he could not understand (42:3). I’d like to think that God did not equip us with such capacity in his creation. So, it’s wise to be willing to acknowledge and accept our limitations before God.
Second, God said to Eliphaz “you have not spoken of me what is right as my servant Job has” (42:7, 8). This is rather shocking, for those three friends were defenders of God! They never questioned God’s justice like Job did, and they always spoke reverently about God’s deeds. So, what exactly was good about Job’s saying? It’s really not clear to me. I suspect that God prefers not to be confined in a dogmatic box, but rather has real, human interaction with his people. God never minds seekers, especially those in suffering, just look at Jesus’ ministry. On the other hand, God never seems to favor those who think they have all the answers.
Job is a deep book, so it’s impossible to summarize it in a short devotion like this. But one thing repeatedly strikes me is the unfathomable nature of God’s will and its manifestation. Bad things may happen to good people, and good things may happen to bad people. “He has made everything beautiful in its time…yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end” (Ecc 3:11). Twenty years ago, such unknown would have frustrated me. But today, such thought humbles me. I am grateful for such change without having to go through what Job did. All I can say is “for from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen” (Rom 11:36).
Keep on reading, you have finished the 22nd book and it’s a difficult one.