Listen Humbly for God


Majestic God, Your ways are beyond all that I can understand, but I know that I can safely trust in You.


Read: Job 38:1-41

[1] Then the LORD spoke to Job out of the storm. He said: [2] “Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge? [3] Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me. [4] “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. [5] Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? [6] On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone- [7] while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy? [8] “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb, [9]when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness, [10] when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place, [11]when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’? [12] “Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place,[13] that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it? [14] The earth takes shape like clay under a seal; its features stand out like those of a garment. [15] The wicked are denied their light, and their upraised arm is broken. [16]“Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recesses of the deep?[17] Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the gates of the deepest darkness? [18] Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this. [19] “What is the way to the abode of light? And where does darkness reside? [20] Can you take them to their places? Do you know the paths to their dwellings? [21] Surely you know, for you were already born! You have lived so many years! [22] “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail, [23] which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle? [24] What is the way to the place where the lightning is dispersed, or the place where the east winds are scattered over the earth? [25] Who cuts a channel for the torrents of rain, and a path for the thunderstorm, [26] to water a land where no one lives, an uninhabited desert, [27] to satisfy a desolate wasteland and make it sprout with grass? [28] Does the rain have a father? Who fathers the drops of dew? [29] From whose womb comes the ice? Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens [30] when the waters become hard as stone, when the surface of the deep is frozen? [31] “Can you bind the chains of the Pleiades? Can you loosen Orion’s belt? [32] Can you bring forth the constellations in their seasons or lead out the Bear with its cubs? [33] Do you know the laws of the heavens? Can you set up God’s dominion over the earth?[34] “Can you raise your voice to the clouds and cover yourself with a flood of water?[35] Do you send the lightning bolts on their way? Do they report to you, ‘Here we are’? [36] Who gives the ibis wisdom or gives the rooster understanding? [37] Who has the wisdom to count the clouds? Who can tip over the water jars of the heavens [38]when the dust becomes hard and the clods of earth stick together? [39] “Do you hunt the prey for the lioness and satisfy the hunger of the lions [40] when they crouch in their dens or lie in wait in a thicket? [41]Who provides food for the raven when its young cry out to God and wander about for lack of food?


Reflect: What is at the heart of God’s communication to Job?

After a seeming silence of 36 chapters, Job finally hears from God (1). Job has received scant comfort from his comforters, and longs to meet with God so he can sort out what’s going on (13:3). But Job’s position, like that of his friends, is based on a false premise. They all think that God’s ways can be understood by the human intellect, by reason and the operation of logic. The Scriptures clearly indicate otherwise (Isa. 55:8,9).

Now when God does talk to him, Job is confronted by a host of unanswerable questions (4-41). Can you count how many questions there are and imagine how Job’s head is reeling from this assault? This process, which continues for the next four chapters, just underlines the greatness of God, how much bigger God is than Job, and particularly the limitations of human reasoning and knowledge. In a rhetorical question, God reminds Job that he is the source of wisdom and understanding (36). God promises to give wisdom to those who humbly ask him for it (Jas. 1:5).



Expect God to speak to you. In an attitude of humility, quiet yourself and listen.



Great God, who is like You? You are over all the earth and Your wisdom is unsearchable.


Syndicated via Scripture Union,

Andrew Miller