Job 40:1-24, Job 41:1-34, Mark 4:35-41, James 1:5-8
If you could ask God any question, what would you ask Him? Would you ask about a certain situation in your life—why something is the way it is? Would you ask Him to explain some great mystery of the universe, or something more personal but mundane?
For Job, the one question in his mind was simply “Why?” Why had God permitted so much terrible suffering into his life? Why was there so much heartache and pain when he had endeavored to live a righteous life? We might find these to be fair, even noble, questions, but the posture of Job’s heart wasn’t humility; it was pride. In Job’s mind, God owed him an answer. What Job really wanted was to correct and rebuke God.
Perhaps you’re in a difficult situation right now. Maybe you feel you’ve been wrongly treated by God, and He needs to answer for it. God’s reply in chapters 40 and 41 is a helpful response to someone who thinks he knows better than God. He points to two massive, untamable, dangerous creatures—the Behemoth and the Leviathan—and asks Job if he can capture or tame them. Can Job manipulate or contain the strongest and most fierce of all of God’s creatures? Can you?
The obvious answer is “no.” God declares, “No one is ferocious enough to rouse Leviathan; who then can stand against me?” (Job 41:10). God’s direct question to Job is really rhetorical, “Would you really challenge my justice? Would you declare me guilty to justify yourself?” (Job 40:8). Again, the answer is a definite “no.”
What God wants us to see is that while there are circumstances and events in our lives that may seem unjust, the Lord is never wrong in how He chooses to act. He doesn’t owe us answers. What we need to remember is that His care for us does not disappear in the midst of suffering.
Even while enduring the anguish of the cross, Jesus did not abandon us in the midst of our greatest need. If He died to deliver us from our sin, He certainly won’t abandon us in lesser afflictions.
To follow Jesus is to accept the invitation to trust Him. This is what faith is: trusting God, even in the midst of storms and trials. While we may not understand our circumstances or why they’ve occurred, God is still just, and His purposes in our lives are always for our good and His glory. So when we find ourselves in hardships again, maybe we shouldn’t ask, “Why, God?” Maybe we should ask less and listen more. Then we might be able to hear Him say, “Do you trust Me?”
Written by Jeremy Writebol