Featured Image: Vladimir Borovikovsky. Job and His Friends. 1810s
If you are struggling with Pride, one of the most helpful things you can do is to get a healthy dose of who God is. God chooses to speak in the book of Job, and how He does is quite amazing.
Learning from Job
Below are a series of questions and statements from Job 38-42. Read them without verse numbers to get the feel for God’s rhetorical argument.
I will question you and you will inform me! Would you indeed annul my justice? Would you declare me guilty so that you might be right? Do you have an arm as powerful as God’s, and can you thunder with a voice like his?
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell me, if you possess understanding!
Who set its measurements—if you know— Or who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its bases set, Or who laid its cornerstone—
Who shut up the sea with doors when it burst forth, coming out of the womb, when I made the storm clouds its garment, and thick darkness its swaddling band, when I prescribed its limits, and set in place its bolts and doors, when I said, ‘To here you may come and no farther, here your proud waves will be confined’?
Have you ever in your life commanded the morning, or made the dawn know its place, that it might seize the corners of the earth, and shake the wicked out of it?
Have you gone to the springs that fill the sea, or walked about in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been revealed to you? Have you seen the gates of deepest darkness? Have you considered the vast expanses of the earth?
Tell me, if you know it all!
In what direction does light reside, and darkness, where is its place, that you may take them to their borders and perceive the pathways to their homes?
Have you entered the storehouse of the snow, or seen the armory of the hail, which I reserve for the time of trouble, for the day of war and battle?
In what direction is lightning dispersed, or the east winds scattered over the earth?
Who carves out a channel for the heavy rains, and a path for the rumble of thunder,
Does the rain have a father, or who has fathered the drops of the dew? From whose womb does the ice emerge, and the frost from the sky, who gives birth to it, when the waters become hard like stone, when the surface of the deep is frozen solid?
Can you lead out the constellations in their seasons, or guide the Bear with its cubs?
Do you know the laws of the heavens, or can you set up their rule over the earth?
Can you raise your voice to the clouds so that a flood of water covers you? Can you send out lightning bolts, and they go? Will they say to you, ‘Here we are’?
Who has put wisdom in the heart, or has imparted understanding to the mind? Who by wisdom can count the clouds, and who can tip over the water jars of heaven?
“Do you give the horse its strength? Do you clothe its neck with a mane? Do you make it leap like a locust? Its proud neighing is terrifying! It paws the ground in the valley, exulting mightily, it goes out to meet the weapons. It laughs at fear and is not dismayed; it does not shy away from the sword.
Is it by your understanding that the hawk soars, and spreads its wings toward the south? Is it at your command that the eagle soars, and builds its nest on high?
Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct him? Let the person who accuses God give him an answer!
Job’s Humble Response
Then Job answered the Lord:
Indeed, I am completely unworthy—how could I reply to you? I put my hand over my mouth to silence myself. I have spoken once, but I cannot answer;
You said, ‘Pay attention, and I will speak; I will question you, and you will answer me.’ I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye has seen you. Therefore I despise myself, and I repent in dust and ashes!
If you are struggling with pride today, spend time meditating on how awesome God is and follow Job as he confesses how small and foolish he is. God will give grace to the humble (James 4:6) as you draw near to Him.