FORTUNE COOKIE WISDOM | Wk 3: “You Will Find Great Pleasure Soon, Pt. 2”
Pastor Mike Overstreet | 01.23.2022
Message recordings available at: https://vimeo.com/element3
God is Just → Justice is Black-&-White = God is either incompetent OR Job must have sinned.
Job 38:1-3 (CEB)
1 Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind:
2 Who is this darkening counsel
with words lacking knowledge?
3 Prepare yourself like a man;
I will interrogate you, and you will respond to me.
Job 38:4-11 (CEB)
4 Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundations?
Tell me if you know.
5 Who set its measurements? Surely you know.
Who stretched a measuring tape on it?
6 On what were its footings sunk;
who laid its cornerstone,
7 while the morning stars sang in unison
and all the divine beings shouted?
8 Who enclosed the Sea behind doors
when it burst forth from the womb,
9 when I made the clouds its garment,
the dense clouds its wrap,
10 when I imposed my limit for it,
put on a bar and doors
11 and said, “You may come this far, no farther;
here your proud waves stop”?
God’s first speech highlights our limited human perspective & finiteness in an infinite universe.
Job 40:8-12 (NIV)
8 “Would you discredit my justice?
Would you condemn me to justify yourself?
9 Do you have an arm like God’s,
and can your voice thunder like his?
10 Then adorn yourself with glory and splendor,
and clothe yourself in honor and majesty.
11 Unleash the fury of your wrath,
look at all who are proud and bring them low,
12 look at all who are proud and humble them,
crush the wicked where they stand.
God’s second speech exposes how an infinite, life-filled universe can’t possibly be micromanaged by simple, black-&-white justice.
Job 41:1-2, 5, & 9 (NIV)
“Can you pull in Leviathan with a fishhook
or tie down its tongue with a rope?
2 Can you put a cord through its nose
or pierce its jaw with a hook?
5 Can you make a pet of it like a bird
or put it on a leash for the young women in your house?
9 Any hope of subduing it is false;
the mere sight of it is overpowering.
God’s final speech acknowledges the unpredictable, chaotic elements that still exist within God’s good world.
Job 42:1-6 (CEB)
Job answered the Lord:
2 I know you can do anything;
no plan of yours can be opposed successfully.
3 You said, “Who is this darkening counsel without knowledge?”
I have indeed spoken about things I didn’t understand,
wonders beyond my comprehension.
4 You said, “Listen and I will speak;
I will question you and you will inform me.”
5 My ears had heard about you,
but now my eyes have seen you.
6 Therefore, I relent and find comfort
on dust and ashes.
Job finds serenity because, through God’s Wisdom, he can now accept the complexity of life, mystery, & paradox; which frees him to embrace the totality of his life.
The Thomas Merton Prayer:
My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you
does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road,
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always though
I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.