Summary: A first-person narrative. When in our suffering we challenge the Lord like Job did, he works repentance in us so that we stand dumbfounded at his wisdom and power and stand astounded at his promise of grace.
Who Dares to Question the Lord
Good Morning. I thank you for this opportunity to speak to you. My name is Job. I realize that because of the way it is spelled in English, you would usually pronounce it “job.” But it is Job.
Please allow me to give you a little bit of background about myself. I lived in the land of Uz in the Middle East many centuries before our Redeemer was born. The Lord blessed me with seven son and three daughters. I loved them dearly. He also gave me great wealth in flocks and herds.
One day that all changed. Report after report reached me that my flocks and herds were captured or destroyed. My servants were killed. And then the last report came. My children, all my children, were dead. The house they were in had collapsed in the wind. All dead. Grief filled me. I tore my robe, shaved my head and fell to the ground. “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised” (Job 1: 21 NIV).
Yet my troubles were not over. A devastating disease struck me. Painful sore covered my whole body. I could do nothing in my agony accept sit on the ground. No medication could ease my pain. The only relief, if you could call it relief, was to scrape myself with broken pieces of pottery.
Friends came, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar. The could hardly recognize me and they had no idea what to say. They stared at me speechless for seven days. Finally, my agony got the better of me. I had to speak. I wished that I had never been born. Oh that I had died at birth!
Then my friends began to speak. They pointed out that God acts justly. Then they reasoned since I was suffering so much I must be worse than others.
I had lived for my Lord. Why would this happen to me. In my misery I began to challenge the Lord. I demanded that he bring evidence against me. Why? Why is this happening? Why must I suffer like this? Why? As my friends again and again reason that I must be worse than anyone else , I grew more defiant against God, accusing him of unfairness, demanding to know why. What sin I was guilty of!
Then out of storming whirlwind, the Lord answered me, “Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge? Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me” (Job 38:2,3 NIV). The Lord put me in my place. He didn’t answer my question “Why?” He didn’t say that my friends were right either. Later he rebukes them. He put me in my place basically saying: “Who dares to question the Lord?!” It was not my place to question the Lord. Who was I? What did I know? What could I understand? The Lord humbled me.
I pray that when you challenge God with questions like I did, these words of the Lord bring you to repentance like they did for me. Who dares to question the Lord?! No one should. For we are but dust and ashes. Rather we stand dumbfounded at his power and wisdom. We stand astounded at his promise of grace. Who dares to question the Lord?! Not you, not me.
1) We stand dumbfounded at his wisdom and power
The Lord wanted me to see how ignorant and powerless I was, so that I would stand dumbfounded at his wisdom and power. Who was I to question my him? In question after question he drives home the point.
“Where were when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone – while the morningstars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?” (Job 38:4-7 NIV)
Here I thought I could challenge the way God governed the world, yet I wasn’t even there when it was planned out! I could not even begin to comprehend its vastness or understand how all was held in place. What wisdom the Lord has!
In your modern world, you have all the more evidence of the wisdom that planned out and governs the universe. You know that your universe is more vast that we could ever imagine. Your science measures space in light years. You know that the stars are as large and powerful as the sun, if not more so. Who could have planned it all? You know that the earth is held in place in its orbit by gravity. But what is gravity? How is it produced? It’s still a mystery of our wise Creator. We stand dumbfounded at his wisdom.