But Job answered and said,
2 How hast thou helped him that is without power? how savest thou the arm that hath no strength?
3 How hast thou counselled him that hath no wisdom? and how hast thou plentifully declared the thing as it is?
4 To whom hast thou uttered words? and whose spirit came from thee?
5 Dead things are formed from under the waters, and the inhabitants thereof.
6 Hell is naked before him, and destruction hath no covering.
7 He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing.
8 He bindeth up the waters in his thick clouds; and the cloud is not rent under them.
9 He holdeth back the face of his throne, and spreadeth his cloud upon it.
10 He hath compassed the waters with bounds, until the day and night come to an end.
11 The pillars of heaven tremble and are astonished at his reproof.
12 He divideth the sea with his power, and by his understanding he smiteth through the proud.
13 By his spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent.
14 Lo, these are parts of his ways: but how little a portion is heard of him? but the thunder of his power who can understand?
Job answers his friends with dismay. “What advice have you given to one without wisdom? How many have you made knowledgeable?” (v. 3) “To whom have you spoken and what spirit came out of your mouth?” (v. 4).
Job seems to mock his friends' Egyptian theological approach and asks: “Why do you keep thinking about the gods and the sacred bark that takes men away from under the waters? When men hear this, they tremble” (v. 4). Job wants to know the specifics of the source of this Egyptian theology of what the dead go through after death. There are no evil monsters lurking on the heavenly Nile trying to grab the deceased souls from the bark of the [sungod] Ra as he makes his trip at midnight through the twelve gates to the judgment hall of Osiris, the judge of the dead.
With Moses and Job, we also understand that God created the heavens and the earth, and will at last eradicate Satan and his angels. Standing at the door of great events concluding this world’s history, help us to stand firm. Amen.
Koot van Wyk
Kyungpook National University
Sangju, South Korea