Job 38:16-30 (ESV)
“Have you entered into the springs of the sea, or walked in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been revealed to you, or have you seen the gates of deep darkness? Have you comprehended the expanse of the earth? Declare, if you know all this.
“Where is the way to the dwelling of light, and where is the place of darkness, that you may take it to its territory and that you may discern the paths to its home? You know, for you were born then, and the number of your days is great!
“Have you entered the storehouses of the snow, or have you seen the storehouses of the hail, which I have reserved for the time of trouble, for the day of battle and war? What is the way to the place where the light is distributed, or where the east wind is scattered upon the earth?
“Who has cleft a channel for the torrents of rain and a way for the thunderbolt, to bring rain on a land where no man is, on the desert in which there is no man, to satisfy the waste and desolate land, and to make the ground sprout with grass?
“Has the rain a father, or who has begotten the drops of dew? From whose womb did the ice come forth, and who has given birth to the frost of heaven? The waters become hard like stone, and the face of the deep is frozen.”
Notice that God doesn’t ask simple things like, “Can you run as fast as a horse?” Instead of simply asking the impossible, God asks questions that are over Job’s head.
Have the gates of death been revealed to you, or have you seen the gates of deep darkness?
Death has gates? What?
Although God is being gentle with Job physically, he still totally pins him back. The things Job wanted to question God about are so far over his head that Job isn’t even prepared to discuss the topic.
Job’s statements to God now look clueless. If Job is clueless, what does that make us?
We all pray. We want God to do this or that thing to help us achieve something. Or we ask for help with some important decision. Hopefully our goal is to serve and glorify the Lord.
But how often do we even ask for the right thing? We know what we want but not what we really need. We don’t know the future and we don’t understand the past. So then, how should we pray?
On our knees. Prayer should always begin with praise and worship. Then we should seek His will.
It’s OK to ask for favors – He says we should – but what we really need is guidance.
The weekly study guides, which include discussion questions, are available for download here: