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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Job 38-39

So, no one responds to Elihu, after ranting against Job from chapter 32 through chapter 37.  Significantly more space than God takes Godself to do essentially the same thing.  Elihu's accusation against Job toward the middle of his speech, "hablas mucho y no sabes lo que dices," seems like it may apply more to Elihu than Job.

That takes us to Chapter 38-41, wherein God answers Job, sort of.  It is an epic rant, and was surely fun for the oral presenters to perform. 

«¿Quién es este, que oscurece mi consejo
    con palabras carentes de sentido?
Prepárate a hacerme frente;
    yo voy a interrogarte, y tú me responderás.
 »¿Dónde estabas cuando puse las bases de la tierra?
    ¡Dímelo, si de veras sabes tanto!

# # #

 “Who is this that obscures my plans
    with words without knowledge?
 Brace yourself like a man;
    I will question you,
    and you shall answer me.
“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
    Tell me, if you understand.

Okay.  Job's question is why is God punishing me when I am innocent, right?  Let's talk about what God did not say.  God does not say that Job is culpable.  God does not say that Job deserves it; nor, does God say that he was testing Job or allowing the Adversary to test Job.  God says, who are you to ask such questions of Me, the Almighty, Todopoderoso.

It's not comforting, but perhaps there is some pretty deep truth in it.  Whether you are dealing with an ancient universe that gave birth to space and time, beyond & before which there is not before nor beyond, or Todopoderoso, we cannot possibly expect to understand fully its/His workings.  Huh.

Also, I note that God's Rant is full of sarcasm, which seems interesting for an ancient text, although maybe it shouldn't.  And, finally, the use of "angels" for "sons of God" comes up again. Job 38:7.  I think this translation is somewhere between the Divinci Code and recognizing that Jonah was swallowed by a big fish not a whale.  It's more than trivia.  It seems like an important clue to the religion that predated radical monotheism and is kind of a bummer the translators choose to hide it.

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