Job 38:41 Who provides food for the raven when its young cry out to God and wander about for lack of food?
As God reminds Job of the ‘Big Picture’ of his Creation and Providence – that he remains sovereign over everything he has made and which he controls in every little detail – he is really doing so for our benefit rather than for the ears of this godly man. After all, Job (in sharp contrast with his four ‘friends’ who were very far from recognising this important truth!) had, on a number of occasions during the long debate, hinted that he did accept the absolute sovereignty of God. For instance: “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him;” (13:15a), “I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth” (19:25), “he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I shall come forth as gold.” (23:10).
Yes, although Job could not understand why he was being put through such agonising suffering, he di know that, somehow, it was all in God’s hands. And this is what we have to settle firmly in our own minds during the often perplexing circumstances of our earthly pilgrimage. The seemingly minor aspect of his providence that God reminds us about in today’s verse is the one Jesus himself referred to in his Sermon on the Mount: ““Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26).
Yes, there are many things confronting us today that would cause us to ‘worry about [y]our life’, and the media take every opportunity to remind us about them, and to sensationalise them so as to unsettle us. It is therefore important that we meditate on the implications of everything God is saying to us in these closing chapters of Job, especially when it comes to issues like ‘climate change’ and ‘sea levels’ (see 38:8-11), increasing violence and crime rates (see 38:12-15), and the occurrence of natural disasters like floods and droughts (see 38:25-27).
Let us remember Question 27 of the Heidelberg Catechism: ”Q. What do you understand by the providence of God? A. Providence is the almighty and ever present power of God by which he still upholds, as with his hand, heaven and earth and all creatures, and so rules them that leaf and blade, rain and drought, fruitful and lean years, food and drink, health and sickness, prosperity and poverty – all things, in fact, come to us not by chance but from his fatherly hand.”
– Bruce Christian