Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Job, A Proverb, and the Shack

Well I thought I would wrap up a few strands of posts all in one shot. I have been reading Proverbs over the past week and came across a witty saying about God's justice that relates very well to some of the posts on Job.

"A just balance and scales are the Lord's, all the weights in the bag are His work." Prov. 16:11

Job: Job learns this lesson through his encounter with God. The big message of Job is that the same ire we turn on his friends for dealing so foolishly with him in his suffering, we should turn on ourselves when we attempt to charge God with injustice in his dealings with us or others. Job's friends are clearly wrong about the "why" of Jobs suffering. Job is clearly wrong to call God into account in the manner which he did. He commits the same error as they did. They did not have the information with which to make a judgment of this sort against Job. Job did not have the information to make a judgment against God. All of his begging for a trial would be a waste of time. He hasn't a bag of weights or scales with which to weigh the case. 

The Shack: I generally think the view of God presented in the Shack is lacking in depth and Biblical support, but there is one chapter that I think I would recommend for reading. It is a chapter where Mack (the main character) is brought in before Lady Wisdom (a personification from Proverbs). When he enters the cavern, it is a courtroom. He thinks that he is about to be judged, but in turn she calls him to be the judge over God and begins to press Him with questions much like God does to Job. The result is a new humility in the character that is part and parcel to his transformation. Again the message comes forth, Mack does not have a scale or weights with which to judge the events of the history of the universe.

There is a deep mystery to the justice of the created world as the purpose of many events remains veiled to us. In this we should find humility and understand our place in God's story, lest we are tempted to exalt ourselves above what we are fitted for. We are all tempted to  question God, His righteousness, His purpose and will. In these moments the writer of Proverbs has a word for us to remember. God is the only one who can weigh the great and the small moments of our vast history. We do not have a scale or the weights for the task.

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