Tuesday, January 6, 2015

dominion, fear & peace

Dominion and fear are with God;
he makes peace in his high heaven.
Job 25:2

For all their faults as counselors, Job's friends do have a robust theology. They know Who God is and what He does. They occasionally misapply some aspects of God's judgment and righteous indignation to Job, but they do understand the right things about God. Their mistakes are usually found in trying to understand Job. Bildad's comments here are worth some reflection.

In this short statement he declares some deep theological conviction. Three things about God are clear. The first is that God rules everything. He has all dominion. He is the King and the Controller of the universe. He does not just look out over the world; He has power to wield it as He wills. That is what dominion means. He can do with us and this world as He pleases. Because God is also holy and just, His pleasure to do anything is always good.

The second word Bildad uses to describe God is "fear". This attends His rulership of everything. It summarizes our first response when considering His greatness. This is not fear before Someone Who wishes to hurt us. Rather, it is fear before Someone Who has absolute power over us. We are nothing in the face of that kind of greatness.

The third and final word is "peace". God makes peace. And in that reality is all of our hope. The Almighty sovereign God of the universe Who can do anything and has all authority in all ways... the God Who is fearful to contemplate... this God makes peace with us. He reconciles and redeems. He seeks to be at one with us and not to strive against us even as we are His enemies. He is a loving king. His love for us to make peace with Him casts out all fear. And this insight leads us to trust God all the more.

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