Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? (Job 38:2)
Today’s big question: how much confidence should we have in our own minds?
Job was a righteous man, and God allowed Satan to test him. Job lost his family, wealth, and health. Would he rise to the occasion and acknowledge God as the sovereign owner of all that exists? Could Job praise God in the midst of his own tragedy? Could Job even begin to understand the counsel of God regarding what was happening to him?
Well, despite showing his human frailty and fallibility, Job righteously accepted that God was in complete control. Throughout the entire tragedy, Job was able to look upon his own condition and acknowledge that God is the Lord of all and the mighty God who upholds all things, including Job’s life.
So often, even without the severity of Job’s trials, we are faced with the decision of whether or not to question God. Sometimes we don’t know the intricate details of our own predicament, or that of others, and we find comfort in our own fallible conclusions. These conclusions are reached without full revelation or understanding, as we attempt to reason our way through the whirlwinds of life by appealing to our own systems of explanation.
This is exactly what Job’s friends did. After silently sitting with Job for seven days, their fallible reasoning came through. Perhaps Job had sinned and angered God. Maybe he had ignored something he was supposed to do. Perhaps Job had even misjudged God’s good character. Without the revelation of the first two chapters of the book of Job, Job and his friends were unable to accurately explain what was happening and why it was taking place.
Today’s text is as serious and intimidating for us today as it was for Job. Who has even a slight ability to counsel outside the revelation of God? Who would dare claim omnipotence, omniscience, and omnipresence? Certainly I would not, and I hope you wouldn’t either.
No human has ever or will ever have the authority to tell God what He should do, quarrel with Him about what He has done, or lay claim to any part of His glory. He is God and we are not. Let me say it again: He is God and we are not. This is the lesson that Job had to learn, and we can also learn it, thanks to the account of Job’s life.
When it comes to counsel and wisdom, we must fully rely on God alone. The fear of God is truly the beginning of knowledge (Proverbs 1:7). Without that foundation, we darken counsel through our own foolish ignorance.
Today’s big idea: confidence in wisdom and knowledge is found in God alone.
What to pray: repent of any confidence you have in your own humanity and immerse yourself in the Word of the Lord.