Saturday, February 25, 2017

Day 24: God Answers & Table Scraps

Job 38, 39, 40 & Matthew 15:21-39

In our passages today, God answers Job’s complaints and a woman asks Jesus for table scraps. These chapters show us that God does respond, even if not on our time table.

Job 38:

God finally speaks- and he is having none of Job’s attitude. God asks Job essentially “Who do you think you are?” Who do we think we are? Too often we think that we would have made better choices, done better things, saved more people if we were God. It is God who causes the stars to move and tells the bear and her young it is time to hibernate. God assures Job and us, that God is in control, that God is the master of this world, and reminds us that we are not the end all be all.

Job 39:

God continues his speech talking about the animals and their young. God points out that God is better at caring for us than they are at caring for their own. God points out that you would not trust a wild Ox to plow your field. Neither should God rely on humankind's rational to keep the world in order.

Job 40:

God asks Job a very pointed question: Shall a fault finder contend with the Almighty?”
Job responds with humility. He says, I’ll be quiet now, I am nothing, of a very small account. This is Job beginning to realize his fault in daring to judge God.
God responds by saying, if you are going to challenge me, then do it to my face! I who created the behemoth, and places for it to find shelter, also created and provide for you.

Matthew 15:21-39

This passage begins with the Canaanite woman, one of my personal heroes. Jesus essentially calls this woman and her family dogs, less than, because they are not Israelites. This is a line of thought that the Jewish readers of Matthew would have understood and even agreed with.
But the woman gives a theological response, even the dogs get the table scraps. At this point Jesus sees her and casts the demon out of her daughter instantly. Sometimes we have to be bold in asking for what we need, even from God.
Jesus goes on to cure many others and people are amazed. Healings lead to praise of God, that is the purpose of miracles in Matthew, for people to recognize God in their midst.
Jesus feeds the 4,000 because he has compassion for them after they have been with him and not eaten for three days. The disciples ask where they will find food. These same men witnessed and participated in the feeding of the 5,000 yet they still wonder where Jesus will find food.
How often do we forget the wonders God has done for us?
Jesus provides from 7 loaves and a few small fish a meal that feeds 4,000 men plus women and children with 7 basket-fulls left over. The number seven represents perfection/completion in scripture.

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