Reading through the Bible together
Job answered Zophar by saying that he knows what his friend is saying. Indeed there are true people of this generation representing human wisdom but when they die, their so-called wisdom will die with them (v. 2). Job says that human understanding is all the same and what his friends are saying is common knowledge that all humans share (v. 3).
Job says that even advanced human knowledge is to go to “revelation” knowledge. (See Ellen White in the book of Education pp. 154-156) where she emphasized the same as Job here. Job is ridiculed by his friends because their frame of reference stops at human existence but Job is “the one who called on God and He answered him” (v. 4). The mystery of salvation is foolishness to the world. Even though God is above nature—a fact that Job’s friends emphasized with their stress on God’s sovereignty—Job reveals a personal God who answers the one who calls on Him (v. 4).
The evil prosper and are secure because sometimes God permits them to be so” (v. 6). Job calls on his friends to carefully study all the animal sciences “the birds” (v. 7); “the earth” (v. 8); the oceans “fish of the sea” (v. 8). All these sciences point to the Creator as we see in Genesis Chapter 1. And Job confirms this by saying, “In Whose hand is the soul of all living things” (v. 10), which Moses had in mind in Genesis 2:7.
Job’s friends should really do a study of the senses, the acoustical abilities of the ear to understand words and the ability of the mouth to taste food (v. 11). Moses was educated in the palace of Pharaoh by the best professors of the University of Egypt of that time, so these were subjects that he may have studied as well. Experiential knowledge is gained through age and long life (v. 12). Job points out that this kind of knowledge continues only as long as man lives; it is not enduring. “With God there is knowledge that endures; with Him there is counsel and understanding” (v. 13). Human knowledge may have insights but God’s knowledge is beyond human wisdom. One person’s knowledge can help another, but no man’s wisdom can replace the understanding of this universe with a deeper insight than the revelatory wisdom of God can do.
Job then presents God as the all-knowing One who is totally involved with this world (vv. 14-25). He leads counselors away empty (v. 17); He makes fools of judges (v. 17); He loosens kings (v. 18); He leads away priests (v. 19). In essence, God has the power to give and take away: speech (v. 20); discernment (v. 20); revelation (v. 22); nations (v. 23); intelligence (v. 24); and influence and power of the strong (v. 21). In the next chapter, Job continues with his thoughts.
Give us the perspective of Your revelation to put all our insights in proper order to share Your knowledge and salvation with this world. Amen
Koot van Wyk
Kyungpook National University
Sangju, South Korea