So let’s turn to Job, chapter forty. The book of Job deals with an age long question of, “Why do godly people often suffer? Why does God allow His children to experience pain?” There’s one school of thought that is, any suffering is punitive, that it is judgment. The other school of thought is, that it is corrective. It seems like, most generally that school of thought that looks upon pain as judgment and punishment, seems to prevail. That seems to be the going idea.
However, that’s rather difficult to understand why that would be the general consensus, inasmuch as our own relationships, parent, children. I really don’t know of a parent that punishes his child, or inflicts pain upon his child in a, in a judgments way, or in a punish, well, we say punish, “you’ve got to be punished”, yet the punishment is corrective. Your thought behind your activity, if you spank them, or send them to their room or whatever, the idea is always that of corrective. That they might learn not to run in the street. That they might learn not to do those things that could be dangerous to them.
Surely with God, if I experience something that is painful, something that brings me grief, sorrow heart, God intends it as corrective, or as instructional. David said, “It was good that I suffered affliction, because then I learned your ways”. Thus, they call it, “The rod of instruction”. The teachers used to be able to use that, before the courts intervened. They had that rod of instruction. We used to have quite a paddle in the wood shop. You get your swats, you know. But it was, it was necessary, especially in wood shop, where the instructor would be teaching you the use of a machine, where if you were not careful, you could lose a finger! You could really do some damage to yourself, and so when kids were goofing off with the machinery, using it in an unwise fashion, they would be told by the teacher to assume the position. I had one of those paddles broken on my posterior. I don’t think it was fair, but. It hurt him worse than it hurt me. It broke in his hand, and cut in his hand, and it hit my wallet. So, But, God uses sometimes, painful experiences for instruction. For my learning, for my benefit.
With Job he was a very, very prosperous man. One of the wealthiest in all the east, looked up to by all the people. Of course we have an insight to the story, that helps us to understand from the onset. An insight that they did not have. We saw behind the scenes. We could see why things were going on. There was a controversy of sorts in heaven, as God was talking to Satan concerning Job. Satan was pleading for the opportunity to get to Job, to really test him, that he might prove to God that Job was not as good as God thought he was. That Job was really a mercenary, only serving God because of his tremendous wealth, and prosperity. The testing was really from the enemy, allowed by God, to prove His servant. The bible tells us that as Christians, we can expect to be tested. The bible says, “Count it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing has happened to you”.
Now a common mistake is to think that testing is for the purpose of destroying. But testing is for the purpose really, of proving. You’ve got some exotic new material that you want to cover the face of a rocket with, so that it can withstand the tremendous heat and all, of reentry into the earth’s atmosphere. So you put it through all types of tests, not to destroy it, but to prove its value. To see if it will stand up under those intense pressures. To see if it will survive. Thus, God often times allows testing for His children. Not to prove to God, He already knows, but to prove to us, the power of God’s Spirit, to sustain us, to keep us, to help us.
Paul speaks of another purpose for afflictions, in his Corinthian epistle, II Corinthians. He talks about the afflictions that he had, and how that God comforted him, in all of his afflictions, in order that he might be able to comfort those who are afflicted, with the comfort that he received when he was afflicted. So by our going through these experiences, heavy trials, we experience God’s work in our lives, as God ministers to us, as God strengthens us, as God takes us through. We understand the faithfulness of God, in taking us through. God comforts us in these times. Thus, when we are ministering to others, who are going through similar type experiences, because we have been through them, we understand first, how they feel. Then we also, having been comforted by God, and being brought through the same kind of a situation, we’re able to relate to them, how God was our strength, and how God was faithful, and how God brought us through.
Whenever I read of a private plane crashing, and a husband or a son, or whatever being killed in a private plane crash, I have great empathy and understanding for what the people are going through, having lost my father, and brother in a plane crash. My brother’s private plane. Thus, when I am speaking to someone who is going through that kind of a shock, that kind of a grief, I’m able to understand their grief. I know what it is. I’ve been there, and I’m able to comfort them with that comfort that God comforted me with, when I was going through the similar experience. Able to share with them the faithfulness of God. So God sometimes just allows us these things in order to give us that ability to minister to others, and to help others when they are going through similar type of experiences.
Godly people are not immune from suffering, from sorrow, from pain. But we do have the strength and the help of the Holy Spirit to see us through. Because I walk with the Lord, because I serve the Lord, He doesn’t give me some kind of a divine immunity from trouble. It doesn’t mean that I can speed down the street and because I serve the Lord, I’m not gonna get a ticket, and have that sorrow of being pulled over, and knowing that I’m gonna have to go to traffic school. It doesn’t give me immunity from that. But when I do run into a problem, the Lord is there to be with me, to see me through.
So Job, in his problems, had his friends who came and sought with earthly philosophy, and wisdom, to bring Job to an understanding. They looked at all of these things that happened to Job as judgments of God for some heinous crime that he must have committed. Some horrible sin. Their theory was that no one would suffer as much as Job suffered, unless he was some kind of a horrible sinner. They were wrong, as we will discover this evening.
The one young fellow, who finally chimed in, Elihu, he sort of pointed out that all suffering isn’t judgmental. That it is sometimes corrective. He was much closer to the truth. So when God rebukes Job’s friends, He gets on the case of the three fellas, who were saying that Job was a horrible sinner and God was punishing him. But God did not castigate Elihu, who was suggesting that it was perhaps corrective, and was closer to the truth, but wasn’t really right on either.
This whole discourse went on through the most of the book of Job, but finally in chapter thirty eight, God Himself intervened. God addressed Himself to Job. For Job, in seeking to defend himself, was in a way blaming God, and he was trying to understand his condition. He was accusing God of not being fair, if indeed his punishment was judgment for some kind of a sin, because he didn’t know what his sin was. So he wouldn’t understand, or he could not understand why God would punish him for something he didn’t know he was being punished for. That’s always a tough thing! If I’m going to be punished, I want to know what I’m being punished for. Then a few times I’ve been punished and I didn’t know what it was for, and you really feel, “Man that is not fair!”.
So, as we get into chapter forty, God is continuing to challenge Job.
The Lord answered Job, and said, [and said] Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? [The Bible says concerning God, “Who hath been his counselor at any time?” What can you teach God? A lot of times I think in prayer, we sometimes think of prayer as almost, sharing time with God. As I seek to explain to God all of the ramifications of the problems that I am facing, as though God did not know it. So I am seeking to instruct God in my prayer time. Jesus said, “Your Father knows what you have need of, before you ever ask Him”. “Who will be His instructor?”] and he that reproveth God, [And there was some cases where Job was sort of reproving God. He said,] okay answer it. And Job answered the Lord, and said, Behold, I am vile; what can I answer you? I will lay my hand upon my mouth. [Or, “I’ll just shut my mouth”. God is demanding an answer from Job, and Job said, “I don’t have any, I’ll just shut my mouth”. Job said,] Once I have spoken; but I will not answer: yea, twice; but I will proceed no further. [“I don’t have any, I don’t have any answer”.] Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said, Gird up now your loins like a man: I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me (40:1-7).
Goes back, and that’s the way God first addressed Job in chapter thirty eight. So Job responds to these first things that God has said. Declaring, “I’m vile, I’ll shut my mouth. I’ve spoke once and twice but that’s it”. So God takes up the case again. Job hasn’t yet been brought to the place of a full confession that God wants. So God’s gonna lay a few more things on him. God doesn’t want just silence, He wants a confession. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” So God is demanding of Job an answer, and Job says, “I’m just gonna shut up”. No confession. So, the Lord said, “Okay, let’s go round two. Gird up your loins like a man, answer me”.
Will you also disannul my judgment? and will you condemn me that you might be righteous (40:8)?
Look out for this one! It’s a common practice of people. The practice of blaming God for what you have done, because God made you as you are. And, “If God made me as I am, then how can God blame me for what I do? It really isn’t my fault, it’s God’s fault for making me this way”. You remember, in the beginning, when Adam ate of the forbidden fruit, and God came into the garden and Adam hid himself. God said, “Adam! Where art thou?” He said, “I hid myself, for I was naked”. God said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of that tree that I told you, you should not eat?” And what did Adam answer? “The woman, that you gave to me”, you gave to me, “she did tempt me, and I did eat”. But you see, it was really blaming God. “You’re the one that put her here.” So there is that sort of a blaming of God for what he did. A very common thing, as people so often blame God for their actions, because, “God made me”. “Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? Will you condemn me, that you will be righteous?” In other words, I try to justify myself, because this is the way God made me. Then God said…
You have an arm like God? [The Bible speaks a lot about the arm of the Lord. It speaks about Him delivering Israel out of Egypt with a strong arm. An arm like God. The Bible speaks about, “Underneath are the everlasting arms”. As though God is holding us in His arms. I love it, I know it’s poetic, I know it’s a figure of speech, but I love it. Because, as the psalmist said, “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars which you have ordained”. I consider the heavens the work of thy fingers. Man has been creating a lot of super rockets. I, for one, have always loved power. Supe up the car, make it go just as fast as you can, when I was growing up. Love power! Thus, I’m greatly in love with rockets. I love to see those rocket engines fire! I love to see that fire come out of that tail. I love to see it hit the ground, and spread, and the smoke, roar, oh I love it! I love to see that thing shaking, as those bolts explode, and the thing begins to lift off! A little erratic, but I love it as that power surge takes place, and that thing begins to just shoot like an arrow. Just watch that flame! I love it! You see that thing streak out in the sky, and you imagine a tremendous force, and thrust of those rocket engines, as they lift that huge spacecraft, and as they accelerate that thing to a speed of twenty five thousand miles an hour, so that it can escape the gravitational pull of the earth, and develop an orbit around the earth. You think of the initial thrust that it takes to get that thing into orbit! What kind of thrust do you suppose it took to get the earth into orbit around the sun? Better yet, what kind of thrust did it take to get the sun into it’s orbit, through the milky way galaxy? Nineteen miles a second, the sun is speeding through space. How bout Arcturus, eighty times larger than the sun, traveling at the speed of seventy miles a second! What kind of thrust did it take to get that huge star, moving so fast in an orbit in this milky way galaxy? Well, according to the psalmist, “When I consider the heavens, the work of thy fingers”, God took Arcturus, and went (pop). Now we’d like to think, “If the universe is the work of His fingers, why should I worry, when underneath of me, are the everlasting arms”. If the fingers of God could fling the universe into its orbits, oh how secure is my position in the everlasting arms! “Do you have an arm like God”, He declares.] Can you thunder with a voice like his (40:9)?
A figurative of speech again, but so many times it is, the thunder is referred to in figurative speech as the voice of God. He thundereth from heaven. I love a good thunderstorm! You probably think I’m a little weird, but man I love the crackle of that thunder! I love to hear it when it’s way off in the distance, it gets louder, and louder. Or it cracks right next to you, and you hear the thing echo, you know, way on off.
Deck now yourself with majesty and excellency; and array yourself with glory and beauty. Cast abroad the rage of your wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him (40:10-11).
“Let’s see you deck yourself out with beauty. Look at the beauty of the nature of the world around us. Who decorated it? Who placed the beauty there?” God said, “Go around, and abase every proud person.” The bible says that, “God abases the proud”.
Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; tread down the wicked in their place. Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret. And then I will confess unto you that by your own right hand you can save yourself (40:12-14).
God said, “Take care of every proud person. Bring them down to the dust. Bring the wicked down, and then I will confess that you’re able by your own right hand to save yourself”.
Salvation is a miracle of God. No man can save himself. You remember when that rich young ruler, who had come to Jesus, went away when Jesus gave him the cost of discipleship, and Jesus turned to His disciples and said, “How hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of heaven. It’s really easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than it is for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven”. The disciples, alarmed at that said, “Well Lord, who then can be saved?” And Jesus said, “With man, it is impossible, but with God all things are possible”. Your salvation is a miracle, something you cannot do, but God has done for us.
Now the Lord calls Job’s attention to the largest land animal, and the largest sea animal.
Behold now behemoth, [Now just what is a behemoth? Or behemoth? There are some who believe that behemoth is an elephant because of one of the descriptions of him here, declaring that he is the greatest of all of the beasts. There are others who believe that it was a hippopotamus that was there in the Nile river. There are certain things of behemoth here, that would be like a hippo, who was a extremely powerful animal. Some thought a rhinoceros. I personally think that behemoth was a dinosaur from the description, because of the common acceptance of the unproved theory of evolution, people generally think of dinosaurs of having lived about seventy million years ago, and becoming extinct long before man ever walked upon the earth.
But there is evidence that dinosaurs may not have lived that long ago, but that dinosaurs did live contemporary to man. There are some findings down at the Biloxy river in Texas, of tracks that appear to be human tracks, that are right along side of dinosaur tracks, crossing over them. One foot print right inside of a dinosaurs print. They recently found a human tooth right in that same strata with the dinosaurs footprints. It is very possible that dinosaurs did not become extinct seventy million years ago, through some strange causes that we know not, but actually became extinct at the flood. That they were not able to survive in the environmental conditions of the earth, after the flood, which caused their extinction. Fossilized remains of dinosaurs are found up in the area of northern Arizona, the painted desert, up in the Utah area there. There seems to be an indication that, that whole area was once a vast sea, large body of water. There are many scientists today that have been studying the grand canyon, who believe that the grand canyon was formed by a catastrophic change of the geographical surface of the earth, rather than gradually eroding over millions of years. That this vast sea that once was up there in that plains area, when there came this tremendous upthrust, when the fountains of the great deep were open, and the geographical surface of the earth was changed during the time of the flood, and the waters shifting creating a weight in the one area, thrust up this other area, the area up there that this sea that was there, with this upthrust came rushing on down through what it was, is now, the grand canyon. And that it was formed in a relatively short period of time by this tremendous flood. Eaten out, as that sea was emptied by the upthrust, and emptied on down into the area of the gulf of California.
More and more of the geologists and scientists are turning towards this theory, rather that the gradual erosion theory over millions of years of time. The dinosaurs they believe, lived around the edge of that vast sea that was there. When the sea, of course dissipated with this upthrust, the dinosaurs lost their natural habitat. Thus, their fossil remains are there and they became extinct. The theory of evolution rests upon the theory of uniformitarianism. The uniformitarianism theory received a great jolt through the writings of Immanuel Velikovsky. When Immanuel Velikovsky first came out with his books, it turned the scientific community upon their ear. They began to loudly protest against his theory. There were all kinds of screams, because his theories totally devastated the theory of uniformitarianism. I would, if you’re interested in this subject, strongly recommend his book, “Earth in Upheaval”, which totally destroys the theory of uniformitarianism. And, is filled with evidence. For not gradual changes, but catastrophic changes. In his book, “Worlds in Collision”, he demonstrates quite thoroughly that the last great ice age took place less than ten thousand years ago. All of this would mean, that the earth was not as many suppose it to be, twelve billion, fourteen billion years old. It is only if you subscribe to the evolutionary theory, if you bought into it, that you have to believe that dinosaurs existed seventy million years ago, and were extinct long before man ever came on the scene. As you read the description of behemoth, it surely fits that of a dinosaur. Now you might see in it, the hippopotamus yourself, problems with the elephant. But,] he eats grass like an ox (40:15).
Some think maybe it was the mammoth, they were a grass eating animal.
His strength is in his loins, [Powerful legs! And the force] his force is in the navel of his belly. [Now that can’t be said of a hippopotamus. That’s what makes a problem with the hippo.] He moves his tail like a cedar tree: [Powerful tail! Hippos don’t have too powerful a tail. So that makes it a problem.] and the sinews of his stones are wrapped together. His bones are like strong pieces of brass; his bones are like bars of iron. He is the chief of the ways of God: [That is the greatest, or the largest creature, land creature, that God created. That would rule out the hippo. Because the elephant today, is the largest land creature. But, of course going back, surely the dinosaur was much larger than our elephants.] he that made him can make his sword to approach unto him. Surely the mountains bring him forth food, where all the beasts of the field play. He lies under the shady trees, in the covert of the reed, and the fens. [Indications are that the dinosaurs did live on the edge of the bodies of water, the reedy places.] The shady trees cover him with their shadow; and the willows of the brook compass him about. Behold, he drinks up a river, and hasteth not: he trusts that he can draw up Jordan in his mouth. He taketh it with his eyes: and his nose pierces through the snares (40:16-24).
So a description of some animal that is extinct at the present time, unless it indeed be a hippo. But as we pointed out there’s problems with the hippo.
In chapter forty one, he talks now of another strange beast, which is called the leviathan.
Can you draw out leviathan with a hook? [And thus it’s a large beast that inhabits the oceans or the seas. There are some who believe that this is a reference to the whale. It would be sort of hard to catch a whale on a, with a fishing hook. “Can you draw out leviathan with a hook?”] or his tongue with a cord that you might let down? Can you put a hook into his nose? or bore his jaw through with a thorn (41:1-2)?
The custom of course, when they wanted to take someone captive was to put a ring through their nose. Then they would take a chain, and they’d pull em around. If you’ve got a ring through your nose, and a leash on it, you’re not gonna try and run away. So, when they would bring the captives before the monarchs, the pagan monarchs, they would bring them in with these rings through the nose, and they would lead them around with leashes. So, “Can you do this to this leviathan? Can you, can you take him captive?”
Will he make many supplications unto you? [“Will he plead for you to let him go?” “Please let me go!”] and will he speak soft words to you? [You know, “Will he try and talk his way out of it?”] Will he make a covenant with you? can you make him a servant for ever? Will you play with him as you might play with a bird? or will you chain him up for your maidens? Shall the companions make a banquet of him? and shall they part him among the merchants? [“Can you actually catch him, and, and eat him? Sell him in the merchants?”] Can you fill his skin with barbed irons? or his head with fish spears? [There are some who believe that this is the crocodile, and that seems to be one of the most common of the commentators. That this is the crocodile, before the time. But crocodiles were trapped, or they were caught, they were speared. They um, but of course a powerful animal on the banks of the Nile.] Lay your hand upon him and remember the battle, do no more (41:3-8).
In other words, if you lay your hand on him, man you’re dusted. You’ve had it! You won’t do any battle any more. I mean, you try and catch him, and, and you only do it once. You don’t do it again!
Behold, the hope of him is in vain: shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him? [They are terrifying in, in their appearance and all.] None is so fierce that dare stir him up: who then is able to stand before me? [“If you can’t stand before this creature that I have made, how in the world do you think you’re gonna stand before me? If those creatures that I have made are too powerful and all for you to contend with, how do you think you’ll ever contend with me?”] Who hath prevented me that I should repay him? whatsoever is under the whole heaven is mine (41:9-11).
The idea is, “Who has ever had God as his debtor? Who has prevented me that I should repay him?” What have you done that God owes you anything? God will not be a debtor to any man. God said, “Hey the whole earth is mine.” “Well man Lord, I gave you part of my gold!” Who’s gold? Who made the gold? “I gave God a diamond ring! My diamond ring!” Whose diamond? God said, “Who am I a debtor to? It’s all mine! Everything under the heaven is mine.” Then God, going back to speak about this creature said, the leviathan…
I will not conceal his parts, nor his power, nor his comely proportion. Who can discover the face of his garment? or who can come to him with his double bridle? [To bring a bridle, and try and you know, train him.] Who can open the doors of his face? his teeth are terrible round about. [The crocodile has three sets of, or three rows of teeth, very sharp and angular. They’re not really for masticating the food, but ripping it. Their designed just to rip, rather than to, you know, they’re not grinders, you can’t masticate with them.] His scales are his pride, shut up together as with a close seal. [Sounds a little like a crocodile there. This heavy scaly back which is able to repel arrows and, and even bullets.] One is so near to another, that no air can come between them. They are joined one to another, they stick together, that they cannot be sundered. [Or separated.] By his sneezing [The word “neesings” is an ancient English word for sneezing.] a light doth shine, [And here’s where you get away from the crocodile now. Because as you listen to this, doesn’t really sound like a crocodile. “By his sneezing a light doth shine.”] his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning. Out of his mouth goes a burning lamp, and sparks of fire leap out. Out of his nostrils goes smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron. His breath kindles coals, and a flame goes out of his mouth. In his neck remaineth strength, and sorrow is turned into joy before him (41:12-22).
The reference to the neck would disqualify the whale, it doesn’t really have a neck. But these other things, would disqualify a crocodile. Then what is leviathan?’
The flakes of his flesh are joined together: they are firm in themselves; they cannot be moved. His heart is as firm as a stone; yea, as hard as the piece of the under millstone. When he raises himself up, the mighty are afraid: and by reason of breakings they purify themselves. The sword of him that layeth at him cannot hold: the spear, the dart, nor the habergeon. He esteemeth iron as straw, and brass as rotten wood. The arrow cannot make him flee: slingstones are turned with him into stubble. Darts are counted as stubble: [That is, javelins, spears.] he laughs at the shaking of the spear. Sharp stones are under him: he spreads sharp pointed things upon the mire. He maketh the deep to boil like a pot: he maketh the sea like a pot of ointment. He maketh a path to shine after him: and one would think the deep to be hoary. [Which is, which is a, well, gray hair, would be a hoary head, so deep to be, have you ever run your hand quickly through water, and seen all the little air bubbles, it looks like the white? So when he goes through the deep, it leaves this wake behind him, and it’s sort of this white wake behind him.] Upon the earth there is not his [equal or his] like, who is made without fear. And he beholdeth all high things: he is king over all children of pride (41:23-34).
The end here goes into a description of Satan. “He beholdeth all high things, he is king over the children of pride.” Description of Satan.
Now, it is quite possible that leviathan was a dragon. Every ancient culture, society or people, ethnic group, have stories of dragons. The descriptions of the dragons are sort of fire breathing, monsters. Leviathan, in the Hebrew, literally means a twisting monster. Where do the ideas come from for dragons? The fact that they are universally spoken of by the different peoples of the world? The Chinese, in their parades have the dragons. The idea of the dragon of course, the breathing of the fire, and they’re sort of floating in a way, through the air. It could be a dragon, or it could be some form of a great sea monster. You know, the Lochness Monster, if indeed it does exist. Something like that.
In Isaiah twenty seven, he speaks there of leviathan, and he relates it to the dragon. Isaiah twenty seven, one. “In that day, the Lord with His sore, and great and strong sword, shall punish leviathan, the piercing serpent, even leviathan, that crooked serpent, and He shall slay the dragon that is in the sea.”
There has been a suggestion, and not without merit, that the serpent that came to Eve in the garden, was in reality, a dragon. The Hebrew language would allow for that. The Bible said it was one of the most subtle of all of the beasts. That it wasn’t a snake at all, like we think of a snake. But it was actually a dragon. It is interesting that the dragon is a symbol for Satan. In the book of Revelation in its reference to Satan, it calls him, “That great dragon, Satan, the devil”. One of the names for Satan. The interesting thing is that when God cursed the serpent, what was the curse? That it would have to crawl upon its belly, which would indicate that it probably before time, had a means of propulsion through the air. But as the result of the curse, would be forced to crawl upon the belly, on its belly in the dust of the earth. That could’ve been what caused the extinction of the dragon.
It is interesting that this fire breathing bit, and smoke bit, dragons of course are depicted as breathing fire, and smoke. I would encourage you to look up in the encyclopedia the Bombardier beetle. It’s one of my favorite beetles. Able to create a fire. Of course I’m fascinated also with fireflies. How they are able to just light up. It’s just, intensely fascinating to me! But, bombardier beetles are also extremely fascinating. Read about them! The fire that they can create! This little beetle, and that same principal. If God would build it into some gigantic monster kind of a beast, could indeed have a chamber where certain gases were formed that as they were exhaled, when they hit the oxygen, would flame.
Now God is talking about two large creatures, that are now extinct. But He’s saying to Job, “Hey Job, you can’t even manage my creation! These things are too great for you. You can’t bring them under control. So, why are you contending with me, when I created these lesser things?” Job was finally then brought to where God wanted.
Then Job answered the Lord, and said, I know that you can do every thing, [“Man God, I know you can do every thing!”] and that no thought can be hidden from you (42:1-2).
He is now brought to the acknowledgment of the omnipotence of God, and of the omniscience of God. “Lord I’ve been out of my league. My desire to bring my case before you, I was out of my league Lord. I know you can do every thing, and I can’t hide any thought from you.” Then Job takes the one statement of God, and he quotes God, and he says…
Who is he that hideth counsel without knowledge? [That was God’s question when He first came on the scene. “Who is this one who is, is hiding counsel without knowledge?”, and Job says, “I am the one Lord, I am guilty”.] therefore have I uttered that which I did not understand; things which were really beyond me, which I did not know (42:3).
He confesses that his whole statements were just, he was talking about stuff he really didn’t understand, or really didn’t know. “I’m not an authority. I really didn’t, I’m the one Lord, I’m guilty.” God said to Job…
Hear, I beseech thee, and I will speak: I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me. [So God had challenged him. “Okay now hear me, and I will speak, and I will demand of you. I want you to answer me.” And in response to that, Job said,] I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now my eyes seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and I repent in dust and ashes (42:4-5).
“God, I’ve heard about you, and now I’ve seen you.” Big difference between just knowing about God, and really apprehending, seeing God. “I’ve heard about you with the hearing of my ear.” That’s the position so many people are in today. They really don’t know God, but they’ve heard about God. Just hearing about God doesn’t really alter your lifestyle. You, you live as though God did not exist. You never give any time to God. “Oh yes, I believe in God. Oh yes, I’ve heard a lot about God, ever since I was a child, I’ve heard people talk about God. Yes, and I believe that there must be a God.” But you have never submitted yourself to God. You’ve never sought His counsel, His guidance, He has never really been a vital part of your life. That’s your problem! Job said, “I’ve heard about you with the hearing of my ear, but now I see you”. As the result of really seeing God, the truth of God, the effect is, “I repent. I abhor myself, I repent in dust and ashes”.
It’s amazing how man becomes lifted up with pride, and how the Bible says, “Knowledge puffeth up”. You ever get around a lot of these intellectuals and hear them talk? So puffed up. They always you know, try to sort of get a nasal tone to their talking, so that it even sounds even more intellectual. And they, they get sort of a Harvard accent. “Knowledge puffeth up, but love buildeth up”. The true knowledge of God brings a man down.
Shakespeare said, “Man, poor man, so ignorant in that which he knows best”. The most intelligent man, talking in his field of expertise, is so ignorant in all that is to be known, in that particular field of knowledge. What is your best subject? What subject are you more conversant with than any other? What do you know more about than anything else? How much do you know about that subject that could be known? “So ignorant in that which he knows best.” My subject is the Bible. I know the Bible better than any other subject, and yet I must confess, that I am so totally ignorant, about all that could be known about the Bible. “So ignorant in that which I know best.” So is the case with every man. When I see the truth, when I see God, I realize how nothing I am. “I repent”, Job said. “I abhor myself.”
And so it was so, that after the Lord had spoken these words unto Job, the Lord then turned to his three friends, and he said to Eliphaz the Temanite, [And interestingly enough he singles out Eliphaz, indicating that he was the chief spokesman, and probably the oldest of the three.] My wrath [He said] is kindled against thee, and against your two friends: for you have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job. [“You have totally misrepresented my activities with Job!”] Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer these as a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for I will accept his prayers: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that you have not spoken of me the thing that is right, like my servant Job (42:7-8).
The interesting thing is that God hated being misrepresented. Boy that makes me fear and tremble. To realize that God doesn’t like to be misrepresented. I want to be careful when I speak of God. When I speak of the things of God, that I clearly represent the truth concerning God, because He doesn’t appreciate being misrepresented. He really laid it on to Eliphaz, “Because you didn’t speak the things that were right concerning me”. Boy, I would hate to be in the shoes of some of these guys, when they have to stand before God, who have represented God as being poor, bankrupt, broke, out of business. Misrepresented God. “You haven’t spoken the things that are true concerning me.” “God’s work is gonna fail friends, unless you send in your offering this week!” It’s gonna be interesting watching those guys, as they stand before the Lord.
So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as the Lord commanded them: and the Lord accepted Job’s prayers for them (42:9).
Humble pie! You got to come to this guy that you’ve been castigating and saying all these things about, and ask him to pray for you.
And the Lord turned the captivity of Job, [And of course Job praying then for these fellas, and then God blessed him. The interesting thing is that you cannot minister to others without being ministered to yourself. That’s a glorious thing! That’s the glorious thing about the ministry. In ministering to others, you’re always ministered to yourself. Thus, I guess, doubly blessed. The opportunities of ministering to people, the things of God. God ministers to me His blessings over and over! And God, “The Lord turned the captivity of Job,”] when he prayed for his friends: and also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. Then came back [All of these friends that had fled from him.] all of his brothers, and all of his sisters, [When he was in trouble, they vanished, they weren’t to be found. But now that he’s prosperous and can throw a big party, they’re all back again. Fair weather friends, watch out for them, the world is full of them. You go out in the world, and hey it’s full of fair weather friends. As long as you’re picking up the tab, and you know, you’re, they’re around. They’re waiting in the sides, and let trouble come, let calamity come, man, and they’re too busy, or they’d really love to, but they aren’t able, you know, they’ve gotta go someplace, and you’re left alone. We can live without those kind!] and all of those that had been his acquaintance before, and they did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, [“Oh Job, my that was so sad.”] they comforted him over all of the evil that the Lord had brought upon him: every man also gave him a piece of money, and an earring of gold (42:10-11).
So they come back to throw him a party.
So the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning: [He came through. “And when we are tried, I shall come forth”, Job said, and he did. They expressed that in the midst of his trial. “And when I am tried, I shall come forth as gold.” Now as you read the number of sheep and camels, and oxen, and donkeys, they’re exactly twice as many as he had in the beginning. The Lord blessed him, and gave him twice what he had before as far as possessions. However, as far as children, same number again.] He also had seven sons and three daughters. And he called the names of his daughters, Jemima; and Kezia; and Kerenhappuch. [These are names of beauty, and grace and all.] And in all of the land there were no women found so fair as the daughters of Job: and their father gave them an inheritance among their brethren. [There weren’t any more beautiful girls than Job’s girls, in all the land. So fair. So you have that group today that are called Job’s daughters. Comes from this, they’ve chosen well, a name.] And after this Job lived [After this, he lived,] for a hundred and forty years, [Now it was estimated that Job was probably seventy years old when this calamity came to him. Because he had, had ten children, and so they were all old enough to be living out away from his house. So it was estimated he was about seventy years old when the calamity came, and after the restoration, a hundred and forty years. So God gave him twice as many years as he had had, to enjoy the double blessings that came to him. So it means that Job lived to be some two hundred and ten years old. Which, considering the time of Jacob and all, is a pretty good average. If you read the ages of those who lived about the time of Jacob. Abraham, Jacob, and in that area. “And after this Job lived a hundred and forty years”, ] he saw his sons, and his son’s sons, even to four generations. [So he had the blessing of watching his great, great grandchildren.] So Job died, being old and [having lived a rich life] full of days (42:12-17).
Is an expression for not number, but richness of days. “Full of days.”
So we will now start into the Psalms. Gonna have a glorious time, as we move through these Psalms, which is the Hebrew hymnal. But it was intended always to be instructive. The reason why they would put it into a song, is it was easier to remember. So to aid in recall, in memory, these things were put into songs, so you’d be singing the song, and the song would be teaching you of the things of God. Much as we have our chorus today, that are designed to teach us aspects of God’s nature. Thus were the Psalms, to teach of the things of God.
Even there are some of the Psalms that were referred to as acrostic, and that is that they began with a progressive letter of the Hebrew alphabet. The first stanza began with the aleph, the second with the beth, the third with the gimel, the fourth with the daleth. It would be like if we would compose a song, and the first line would begin with A, the second with B, the third with C, and through the whole alphabet. They would teach the children the alphabet.
We have this sometimes don’t we? I mean, we put the alphabet in sort of a music thing, to help the children to learn the alphabet. “A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T,”, you know, “now I’m through”, Yeah! You know, “Now I’ve said my ABC’s, next time come and say it with me”, or something. I, I you know, been a few years since I learned that song, but, how you learn the alphabet. So the Hebrew children, now if you want to know how they learned the alphabet, they taught them the song which is now, the hundred and nineteenth Psalm. So that’s a tough way to learn the alphabet. Every phrase began with a succeeding letter of the Hebrew alphabet. So in teaching the alphabet they’d have to learn the hundred and nineteenth Psalm, and that was a little tough.
May the Lord bless you, and keep His hand upon you, guide you with His counsel, and keep you in His strength. The Lord who flung forth the universe with His fingers, sustain you with His everlasting arms. May you rest upon Him, and may you experience His strength, and His love. May God help you to really come into a full understanding and knowledge, where it isn’t just seeing, or where it isn’t just hearing Him, with the hearing of the ear. But it’s really coming to apprehend, to see God, to see the truth of God, that you might be strengthened, knowing that God is with you, and shall sustain you as His child.
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7168