During our COVID-19 shutdown, Pastor Zekveld plans to provide a personal reflection from Tuesday through Friday.
‘I Will Question You!’
Job was angry with God. Wouldn’t you be?
Job was a good man, a righteous man, and holy. He loved his family. He cared for the poor. He stood up for the oppressed and fought injustice. His advice was respected everywhere he went. If ever there was anyone who didn’t deserve suffering, it was Job!
But God sent Him wave after wave of heavy affliction: the death of his 10 children and loss of all his wealth. He was afflicted from head to toe with painful sores. He was rejected by his wife, and lost all his friends. The incredible pain, grief, shame, and loneliness he suffered were more than enough to destroy his life in every dimension.
So this believer, this righteous man, Job, became very, very upset, even angry with God. He was full of arguments and accusations against God. He had all kinds of questions for God.
Why has God overloaded me with suffering? What did I do to deserve this? How is this fair? Is God just? Why do so many evil people lounge around in the lap of luxury and get away with their abuse? Does it make no difference to God whether you’re righteous or wicked? Why do I strive hard to keep God’s commandments when it makes no difference to God? Does God really know how to run the world? Is He truly wise and good? If He is, I surely can’t see Him!Job
Job cried out to God:
Let me know why You are fighting me! Do You find it good to oppress me…while You smile at the plans of the wicked?Job 10:2-3
He even wanted to take God to court!
Oh, that I knew where I might find Him, that I might come even to His seat! I would lay my case before Him and fill my mouth with arguments.Job 23:3-4
God described Job as a faultfinder who was contending with the Almighty. (Job 40:2) After Job argued and argued with God, God finally answered him: I will question you.
“I will question you, and you will answer Me.“Job 38:3, 40:7
Then He asked Job question after question:
- Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you’re so wise!
- Can you direct the stars and order the seasons?
- Can you make the clouds drop rain and the earth give dew?
- Can you manage the lives of mountain goats, of wild horses and oxen, of ostriches, Behemoth and Leviathan?
In other words, God was challenging Job: Who are you? Who are you to question God? Do you think you can do a better job of ruling the world than I? Do you really understand all that I am doing, the good and perfect plan I am pursuing and advancing?
A man was talking to his neighbor some time ago on a cold, wet, windy day. “What miserable weather!” he said, in disgust. His neighbor rebuked him, “Do you think you could do better?”
It’s a lesson we all need to learn in messed up, sin-cursed world. God has a right to question us about our lives, because He is God. But we don’t have the right to question God, because we are creatures, and sinful.
I don’t mean that we may never ask, “Why are you doing this, God?” “Where are You, God?” But in our questions we should never accuse God of doing a poor job of running the world. We should not try to become His advisors. The Bible says: Who has known the mind of the Lord so that he can advise Him? (1 Corinthians 2:16)
God is doing an amazingly, incomprehensibly superb and wise job of running the world! Just because we very little people can’t see what He’s doing doesn’t mean God doesn’t know what He’s doing!
Everything that happens, in every detail, whether good or evil, happy or sad, comfortable or crushing, is specially arranged by God:
- for His glory,
- for the good of those who trust in Him, and
- for the total destruction of all evil and injustice.
The ultimate proof is the cross of Jesus Christ – where unimaginable evil and injustice were arranged by God in such a way as to accomplish the greatest good that ever happened: our eternal salvation!
Job could safely entrust his life to this good God even when everything was so bad – and so can you. Through the trial of suffering, God would bring Job to the triumph of glory.
A friend of mine was converted by Job 38 where God says, “I will question you, and you will answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?” In her pride she demanded from God an answer to all her questions, an explanation for all His actions. She expected God to give an account to her.
Then she realized she had reversed reality. Reality is that she is insignificant and God is great; she must answer to God, not He to her. When God put her in her place with these words, “I will question you,“ she found peace in the midst of suffering.
She had met the God who was so great that He could work good out of evil. She trusted Him to save her even when what He was doing didn’t make any sense to her.