25 November 2019

Job 41

‘Can you pull in Leviathan with a fishhook
    or tie down its tongue with a rope?
Can you put a cord through its nose
    or pierce its jaw with a hook?
Will it keep begging you for mercy?
    Will it speak to you with gentle words?
Will it make an agreement with you
    for you to take it as your slave for life?
Can you make a pet of it like a bird
    or put it on a leash for the young women in your house?
Will traders barter for it?
    Will they divide it up among the merchants?
Can you fill its hide with harpoons
    or its head with fishing spears?
If you lay a hand on it,
    you will remember the struggle and never do it again!
Any hope of subduing it is false;
    the mere sight of it is overpowering.
10 No one is fierce enough to rouse it.
    Who then is able to stand against me?
11 Who has a claim against me that I must pay?
    Everything under heaven belongs to me.
12 ‘I will not fail to speak of Leviathan’s limbs,
    its strength and its graceful form.
13 Who can strip off its outer coat?
    Who can penetrate its double coat of armour?
14 Who dares open the doors of its mouth,
    ringed about with its fearsome teeth?
15 Its back has rows of shields
    tightly sealed together;
16 each is so close to the next
    that no air can pass between.
17 They are joined fast to one another;
    they cling together and cannot be parted.
18 Its snorting throws out flashes of light;
    its eyes are like the rays of dawn.
19 Flames stream from its mouth;
    sparks of fire shoot out.
20 Smoke pours from its nostrils
    as from a boiling pot over burning reeds.
21 Its breath sets coals ablaze,
    and flames dart from its mouth.
22 Strength resides in its neck;
    dismay goes before it.
23 The folds of its flesh are tightly joined;
    they are firm and immovable.
24 Its chest is hard as rock,
    hard as a lower millstone.
25 When it rises up, the mighty are terrified;
    they retreat before its thrashing.
26 The sword that reaches it has no effect,
    nor does the spear or the dart or the javelin.
27 Iron it treats like straw
    and bronze like rotten wood.
28 Arrows do not make it flee;
    slingstones are like chaff to it.
29 A club seems to it but a piece of straw;
    it laughs at the rattling of the lance.
30 Its undersides are jagged potsherds,
    leaving a trail in the mud like a threshing-sledge.
31 It makes the depths churn like a boiling cauldron
    and stirs up the sea like a pot of ointment.
32 It leaves a glistening wake behind it;
    one would think the deep had white hair.
33 Nothing on earth is its equal –
    a creature without fear.
34 It looks down on all that are haughty;
    it is king over all that are proud.’

This week we will look at the impact of God’s presence. We will read of Job’s confession when he sees God for who he truly is; Isaiah’s response to his vision of God, and the multitudes praising God in heaven. Both Job and Isaiah felt the immensity of their sinfulness, while the multitudes rejoice in their freedom from sin. When we consider God, most of the time we are moved toward prayer – either in confession, thanksgiving or praise. This week this is definitely going to be the case.

Prayer: Dear Father God, when we consider Your creation, the works of Your hands, we realise how insignificant we are. While we are able to build mile high buildings and nanotech medicines we can’t come close to Your creative power. More importantly we can’t create life. Help us to see nature around us and praise You for who You are. As we contemplate Your significance help us to realise that we are fully dependent on you.

We know we need to surrender to You, but find it so difficult. So we pray that, as we contemplate Your creation, it will be a reminder to us to bend the knee before You and truly worship You. Help our prayers to be said out of reverence and gratitude, and our daily lives to be lived for Your honour and glory. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.