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Everything in Its Place – but Wisdom

Written by The Colson Center - Worldview Bible on . Posted in The Colson Center - Worldview Bible

Everything in Its Place – but Wisdom?

Job 28:1-12
“Surely there is a mine for silver,
and a place for gold that they refine.
2 Iron is taken out of the earth,
and copper is smelted from the ore.
3 Man puts an end to darkness
and searches out to the farthest limit
the ore in gloom and deep darkness.
4 He opens shafts in a valley away from where anyone lives;
they are forgotten by travelers;
they hang in the air, far away from mankind; they swing to and fro.
5 As for the earth, out of it comes bread,
but underneath it is turned up as by fire.
6 Its stones are the place of sapphires,
and it has dust of gold.
7 “That path no bird of prey knows,
and the falcon's eye has not seen it.
8 The proud beasts have not trodden it;
the lion has not passed over it.
9 “Man puts his hand to the flinty rock
and overturns mountains by the roots.
10 He cuts out channels in the rocks,
and his eye sees every precious thing.
11 He dams up the streams so that they do not trickle,
and the thing that is hidden he brings out to light.
12 “But where shall wisdom be found?
And where is the place of understanding?”

The Story: Notice that Job is not looking for “right or wrong.” He’s in search of wisdom. Humans are able to figure out and make sense of deep mysteries. Job reflects on the mining industry, how men can penetrate to the depths of the earth, even overturning mountains, to bring out silver, ore, and precious gems. Men can do great works, including holding back the power of water, doubtless, in this instance, for irrigation. Men discover hidden things (v. 11; cf. Prov. 25:2). But where is wisdom? Where is real understanding? Not just into the mysteries of the earth, but the mysteries of life? That’s what Job is seeking, and it’s what eludes him. Job is having difficulty being content with not knowing what he wants to know. That’s both a bad and a good place to be. Good, because it keeps us searching after knowledge and wisdom. Bad, because it can lead us to think we should know as God knows. And we can’t do that (Eccl. 3:9).

The Structure: Job’s desire to gain wisdom and knowledge is laudable, to an extent. We must never forget that all wisdom and knowledge are with God, deposited in our Lord Jesus Christ (Col. 2:3). We can know God and Jesus Christ, but we can’t know as they know. And knowing the difference is crucial.

Do you think Christians should be more urgent about knowing more than they do? Why or why not?


For a deeper look at the book of Job, order Carol A. Newsom’s The Book of Job: A Contest of Moral Imaginations from our online store.

The Worldview Bible examines the teaching of Scripture according to the Story and Structure of Truth – the Framework of Christian Worldview – using only other Scriptures for illumination. Information about The Framework of Truth is available on this site. Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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