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  • Writer's pictureTight Spine

Getting Chapter Thirty-Eighted: It's a Thing.

In the most unlikely of places, I found a tiny glimpse into Heaven.  But I assure you, it's not what you think!


In chapter 38 of the book of Job, God speaks to directly to Job out of a whirlwind. 


God had been primarily quiet for 37 very long chapters.  Silence does not mean absence. 

The first 37 chapters are voyeuristic dialogue: conversations between God and Satan in the throne room of Heaven, many longwinded speeches from four different men (one of which was Job), and a small bit of pointed commentary from Job’s wife.  God starts Chapter 38 by telling Job to brace himself like a man.  That can't be good! But keep reading.

It's as if God had been on an insufferably long car ride with multiple rebellious, complaining, and blaming preteens in the back seat.  All of them providing opinions about the driver, as if He couldn't hear them. But in Chapter 38, without a 1980s-parenting era threat, God pulled the car over. He'd had just about enough.


The Almighty asks rhetorical question after rhetorical question, giving Job what my dad used to call "The Ole What For."  It's blistering. In the whirlwind of His fury, God seemingly slips and gives us a mental image of Heaven. Look at verse 19. Read it slowly.  This is where God asks Job:


What is the way to the abode of light?

…Surely you know…


[An aside: The Midwesterner in me thoroughly enjoys well-delivered sarcasm.]

But don't miss it.

The abode of light.  What a gorgeous description!


When I read this the other day, I stopped in my tracks.  It's much more than just another description of Heaven.


Here’s a little context.  The writing of the book of Job is undated.  Some scholars believe it to be the oldest written book of the Bible.  There’s quite a bit of academic debate about the identity of the author.  In Revelation 21:23-25 we find this illuminating (pun intended) passage that rounds out our little glimpse of Heaven found in Job:


The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp.  The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it.  On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there.


The last book referencing potentially THE oldest book. Circle gets the square.


In the whirlwind of life we are reminded that there is a way to the abode of light.  This gives us pause to consider our light and momentary troubles (or big trouble in little China). Are we complaining and justifying ourselves in the storm, or are we asking God to speak to us through it?

Yes, we could totally get Chapter Thirty-Eighted. That's a possible risk depending on your attitude. But, you should look up the words whirlwind and storm in a concordance. There's plenty of times when the Lord calms the storm and speaks peace instead of correction. Brace yourself (like a man/woman) and ask Him to speak to you. I'm grinning as I type this: He's your dad. So, go on. You can do it!

However God chooses to answer you, remember that our final destination is both assured and permanent. Those that know Jesus already know the way to the abode of light and His Word is a lamp to our feet on this side of Heaven.  As believers, we have the responsibility and distinct advantage to seek out the light of the Lamb in this life within our storms.

In the next place, there will be no storms and His light will be our default.  For always.  All of the glittering and sparkly surfaces we see and touch in Heaven will be amplified in their beauty by the light from the Lamb Himself.

Book of Job

Revelation 21:23-25

2 Corinthians 4:17

Psalm 119:105

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