Bible Commentaries

L. M. Grant's Commentary on the Bible

Job 38

Verses 1-41

Marvellously, God Himself directly intervenes in this discussion so early in the history of man. The storm that had been brewing as Elihu spoke becomes a whirlwind, and God spoke to Job out of the whirlwind. Job had felt his whole life to be in the vortex of a whirlwind, but he little realised that God was speaking in the very troubles he faced, therefore God spoke directly to him. This was miraculous, of course, and there was no possibility that Job would not listen.

It may seem amazing that God would take time to speak to one man in the presence of only a few others when the message He gave was so wonderful that all mankind should benefit by it. However, it was not necessary to speak to large numbers, for the complete record is given in writing for the benefit of every person who will read it, from that time in early history throughout all succeeding history. Who could dare to question the magnificent wonder of these words directly from God in chapters 38 to 41? How well it is for us to take this message deeply to heart.

Are His words too philosophic to understand? Not at all! This is no treatise on theological mysteries, but a plain appeal to simple honesty, concerning the evident facts of God's creation. It surely puts man in his place, for it gives God His true place of Creator and Sustainer of all the universe. How well worth our serious meditation are all the details of which God speaks to Job.



It should be very clear to everyone that God is not speaking to Elihu, but that He confirms what Elihu had said as He answers Job directly (v.1). Most of what God says is in the form of questions. His first question is, "Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge," (v.2) - in other words, "Who do you think you are, Job?" Job's words lacked the knowledge he ought to have had, and God will deeply impress this upon him.

"Now prepare yourself like a man: I will question you, and you shall answer Me" (v.3). God expects Job to take only a man's place, and the questions God asks are simple enough for a man to understand, though Job would find himself helpless to answer such questions.



This section is divided into seven parts, beginning with



"Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?" (v.4). Does the earth have foundations? - an earth that revolves in space with nothing to hold it up? Yes, it could not even exist without a fundamental basis of truth, but could Job explain this? Can anyone today explain it? No! For one thing, none of us was present when God laid these foundations, and who can understand anything about the way that creation came into existence? "For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast" (Psalms 33:9). The earth's foundations and earth itself were created at the same instant, simply by the Word of God.

"Who determined its measurements? Surely you know!" (v.5). Of course Job knew that only God could do this. "Who stretched the line upon it? To what were its foundations fastened?" (v.6). Certainly the foundations of the earth are not fastened to anything visible to us.. Whether Job knew this at that time or not, he could certainly not answer God's question. When man builds he must have a foundation fastened to something solid, but what of God's building? Man too requires a corner stone. Who laid the corner stone for God's building?

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Bibliographical Information
Grant, L. M. "Commentary on Job 38". L.M. Grant's Commentary on the Bible. 1897-1910.