In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind? Job 12:10
Job Affirms God’s Power and Wisdom
Job’s response is complicated. Job knows what his counselors know, yet why is he suffering rather than the wicked? Surely, all nature lies in the hand of God. Though God is too vast for man to comprehend, he acts sovereignly and does what He pleases. Job knows the truisms his friends have uttered. But they have used those truisms to unjustly smear Job’s character and lied to flatter God.
Who does not know all these things? (12:3) This is really Job’s problem. He already knows the truisms that his friends have expressed – and discovers that they doe not apply in his case!
Job has been forced to realize that the ways of God are mysterious. He is free to act and does act, not limited by finite human understandings. What bothers Job is that God seems to act in ways contrary to what he and his friends have always assumed about Him.
3 But I have understanding as well as you; I am not inferior to you. Indeed, who does not know such things as these?
12:4 mocked by his friends: The verb Job uses is also found in a similar negative context in Ps. 2:4. In those contexts, the verb indicates ridicule. But in other passages, this word expresses joy and laughter (Gen. 21:6).
4 “I am one mocked by his friends, Who called on God, and He answered him, The just and blameless who is ridiculed.
12:22 God’s reversal of darkness to light was precisely what Job needed.
20 He deprives the trusted ones of speech, And takes away the discernment of the elders. 21 He pours contempt on princes, And disarms the mighty. 22 He uncovers deep things out of darkness, And brings the shadow of death to light.
12:24, 25 God’s coming reversal of human wisdom is desired by all who presently suffer the arrogance of people who prate their knowledge with no fear of the living God (Prov. 1:7).
He pours contempt on princes, And disarms the mighty. He uncovers deep things out of darkness, And brings the shadow of death to light. He makes nations great, and destroys them; He enlarges nations, and guides them. He takes away the understanding of the chiefs of the people of the earth, And makes them wander in a pathless wilderness. They grope in the dark without light, And He makes them stagger like a drunken man. Job 12:21-25
7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7