From Gary... I wonder...

This is one of my daughter Rebecca's dogs (Cocoa, I think), with an inquisitive look oh her face.  I have always wondered how much dogs really, really understand of their surroundings and I guess I will continue to wonder.  But, it really doesn't matter, does it; after all - a dog is just a dog!!!   Now, when it comes to humans- that is another matter!!!  What we wonder about and for that matter QUESTION, is of great importance!!!!  Not everything we contemplate is of great importance of course, but when it comes to understanding God, suddenly, it becomes a very BIG DEAL, because life beyond this life is at stake.  In the "wisdom" literature of the Old Testament, the book of Job stands out because it strikes a common note in is all: Why do good people suffer???  Job and his three "friends" have lengthy discussions about this and finally Job even questions God.  God answers - and what an answer!!!  In the following quite long quote, we see at least part of the interaction...

Job, Chapter 40

 1 Moreover Yahweh answered Job,   2 “Shall he who argues contend with the Almighty?
He who argues with God, let him answer it.”

  3  Then Job answered Yahweh, 
  4 “Behold, I am of small account. What shall I answer you?
I lay my hand on my mouth.
  5 I have spoken once, and I will not answer;
Yes, twice, but I will proceed no further.”

  6  Then Yahweh answered Job out of the whirlwind, 
  7 “Now brace yourself like a man.
I will question you, and you will answer me.
  8 Will you even annul my judgement?
Will you condemn me, that you may be justified?
  9 Or do you have an arm like God?
Can you thunder with a voice like him?

  10 “Now deck yourself with excellency and dignity.
Array yourself with honor and majesty.
  11 Pour out the fury of your anger.
Look at everyone who is proud, and bring him low.
  12 Look at everyone who is proud, and humble him.
Crush the wicked in their place.
  13 Hide them in the dust together.
Bind their faces in the hidden place.
  14 Then I will also admit to you
that your own right hand can save you.

  15 “See now, behemoth, which I made as well as you.
He eats grass as an ox.
  16 Look now, his strength is in his thighs.
His force is in the muscles of his belly.
  17 He moves his tail like a cedar.
The sinews of his thighs are knit together.
  18 His bones are like tubes of brass.
His limbs are like bars of iron.
  19 He is the chief of the ways of God.
He who made him gives him his sword.
  20 Surely the mountains produce food for him,
where all the animals of the field play.
  21 He lies under the lotus trees,
in the covert of the reed, and the marsh.
  22 The lotuses cover him with their shade.
The willows of the brook surround him.
  23 Behold, if a river overflows, he doesn’t tremble.
He is confident, though the Jordan swells even to his mouth.
  24 Shall any take him when he is on the watch,
or pierce through his nose with a snare?

Job, Chapter 41

 1 “Can you draw out Leviathan with a fish hook,
or press down his tongue with a cord?
  2 Can you put a rope into his nose,
or pierce his jaw through with a hook?
  3 Will he make many petitions to you,
or will he speak soft words to you?
  4 Will he make a covenant with you,
that you should take him for a servant forever?
  5 Will you play with him as with a bird?
Or will you bind him for your girls?
  6 Will traders barter for him?
Will they part him among the merchants?
  7 Can you fill his skin with barbed irons,
or his head with fish spears?
  8 Lay your hand on him.
Remember the battle, and do so no more.
  9 Behold, the hope of him is in vain.
Won’t one be cast down even at the sight of him?
  10 None is so fierce that he dare stir him up.
Who then is he who can stand before me?
  11 Who has first given to me, that I should repay him?
Everything under the heavens is mine.

  12 “I will not keep silence concerning his limbs,
nor his mighty strength, nor his goodly frame.
  13 Who can strip off his outer garment?
Who shall come within his jaws?
  14 Who can open the doors of his face?
Around his teeth is terror.
  15 Strong scales are his pride,
shut up together with a close seal.
  16 One is so near to another,
that no air can come between them.
  17 They are joined one to another.
They stick together, so that they can’t be pulled apart.
  18 His sneezing flashes out light.
His eyes are like the eyelids of the morning.
  19 Out of his mouth go burning torches.
Sparks of fire leap out.
  20 Out of his nostrils a smoke goes,
as of a boiling pot over a fire of reeds.
  21 His breath kindles coals.
A flame goes out of his mouth.
  22 There is strength in his neck.
Terror dances before him.
  23 The flakes of his flesh are joined together.
They are firm on him.
They can’t be moved.
  24 His heart is as firm as a stone,
yes, firm as the lower millstone.
  25 When he raises himself up, the mighty are afraid.
They retreat before his thrashing.
  26 If one attacks him with the sword, it can’t prevail;
nor the spear, the dart, nor the pointed shaft.
  27 He counts iron as straw;
and brass as rotten wood.
  28 The arrow can’t make him flee.
Sling stones are like chaff to him.
  29 Clubs are counted as stubble.
He laughs at the rushing of the javelin.
  30 His undersides are like sharp potsherds,
leaving a trail in the mud like a threshing sledge.
  31 He makes the deep to boil like a pot.
He makes the sea like a pot of ointment.
  32 He makes a path shine after him.
One would think the deep had white hair.
  33 On earth there is not his equal,
that is made without fear.
  34 He sees everything that is high.
He is king over all the sons of pride.”

Job, Chapter 42

1 Then Job answered Yahweh,   2 “I know that you can do all things,
and that no purpose of yours can be restrained.
  3 You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’
therefore I have uttered that which I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me, which I didn’t know.

  4 You said, ‘Listen, now, and I will speak;
I will question you, and you will answer me.’
  5 I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear,
but now my eye sees you.
  6 Therefore I abhor myself,
and repent in dust and ashes.”

OK, I know this is a lot of reading for a post, but it is worthwhile.  Why?  Because, we as mere human beings do NOT KNOW EVERYTHING!!!!  We can wonder, reason, come to conclusions which seem right to us, BUT, just as a dog is just a dog, we too, have our limitations.  Even someone as special as JOB!!! I believe the human race will go far and achieve fantastic things in the future, but we will never become gods!!!!  If we ever (as a race) begin to think of ourselves in this way....  I wonder what sort of questions God will ask us.  However, I have no doubt as to the outcome- see Job, Chapter 42:6 above!!!!!