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©Kris Gerbrandt

Chapter 26 (ESV)

Posted on June 05, 2023  - By Chris LaBelle  

Chapter 26 (ESV) - Then Job answered and said:

“How you have helped him who has no power!
    How you have saved the arm that has no strength!
How you have counseled him who has no wisdom,
    and plentifully declared sound knowledge!
With whose help have you uttered words,
    and whose breath has come out from you?
The dead tremble
    under the waters and their inhabitants.
Sheol is naked before God,
    and Abaddon has no covering.
He stretches out the north over the void
    and hangs the earth on nothing.
He binds up the waters in his thick clouds,
    and the cloud is not split open under them.
He covers the face of the full moon
    and spreads over it his cloud.
He has inscribed a circle on the face of the waters
    at the boundary between light and darkness.
The pillars of heaven tremble
    and are astounded at his rebuke.
By his power he stilled the sea;
    by his understanding he shattered Rahab.
By his wind the heavens were made fair;
    his hand pierced the fleeing serpent.
Behold, these are but the outskirts of his ways,
    and how small a whisper do we hear of him!
    But the thunder of his power who can understand?”

Question to consider: Where else in scripture do we hear of someone calming the sea?

At this point in the conversation, Job’s friends seemed to be at a loss for words. The only one who dared to respond to Job’s challenge to disprove his ideas about resurrection and God’s ultimate judgment upon the individual was Bildad, and Bildad doubled down on his notion of God sovereignly bringing about justice in this life with the caveat that nobody could ever be considered righteous enough to stand before God. It was about as comforting and satisfying as a parent saying to their distressed child, “You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit.”

Therefore, I tend to read Job’s response with a tone of sarcasm. Here is how I would paraphrase the first few verses, “Did you come up with that theory all by yourself, or did someone help you? How comforting it must be to all of those who suffer in this life to hear such wisdom!”

Job then went on to express God’s sovereign control of both the living and the dead. Sheol, the abode of the dead, was not hidden from God, and He would ultimately crush Rahab, that serpent of old, as God promised at the rebellion of Adam and Eve in the garden, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” (Genesis 3:15)

How would God bring this promise about? Through the seed of the woman, the son of man. There was a moment in which Jesus and His disciples were in a boat on the raging sea, and the gospel writers said that Jesus rebuked the wind and the waves. The disciples were afraid of Jesus at that point asking themselves who He could be that even the wind and the waves obeyed Him. Job knew. “By his power he stilled the sea… By his wind the heavens were made fair.”

Who is this son of man? Job knew. He is the one who determined the phases of the moon and separated light from darkness. He’s the one who fashioned the globe. As the apostle John said of Him, “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:3)


Dear heavenly Father, thank You for bringing about Your promise of crushing the serpent and removing the sting of death. Thank You for sending someone to fulfill Your Law on our behalf so we can be the beneficiary of His righteousness. Stir up in us a desire to live a life of gratitude in His name. Amen.