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Job 38:1 11

Job 38:1 11

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Published by: Joseph Winston on Nov 06, 2009
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Job 38:1-11

Job 38:1 Then the L ORD answered – How often do we wish that the L ORD would do the same for us? What does this common need to know the answers to our questions say about us? Job 38:2 Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? – The L ORD’s answer to the questions posed by Job and us, is frightening. The accusation is that we speak but we do not know what we are saying. Job 38:3 Gird up your loins like a man, I will question you – Turnabout is fair play. Be a man and answer the L ORD. Job 38:4 Where were you – The start of this next question show that we literally lack the understanding to even think about asking the questions. We do not stand under these items and because of this, we cannot see them from all sides. Thus, we lack the proper perspective to ask and to answer questions. Job 38:5 Job 38:6 Job 38:7 Job 38:8 Job 38:9 Job 38:10 Job 38:11


Psalm 107:1-3, 23-32

Psalm 107:1 O give thanks to the L ORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures for ever. – This first line sets the theme for Psalm 107. The L ORD deserves praise and gratitude because of who the L ORD is.


Psalm 107:2 Let the redeemed of the L ORD say so – Those people who have been bought with a great price need to tell the world what the L ORD has done for them. Psalm 107:3 gathered in from the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the south – The L ORD’s work of salvation is not limited to any specific area of the world. . . . The missing verses discuss the time Israel spent in the wilderness, the inability of men to praise the L ORD, the punishment of those who rebel against the L ORD, an how the L ORD saves those who call upon Him. Psalm 107:23 Some went down to the sea in ships – It appears that this verse and the next bring to mind the story of Jonah and Jesus stilling the sea. Psalm 107:24 they saw the deeds of the L ORD – Even where chaos rules, the L ORD works. This idea still holds even though the word used for sea is θάλασσα rather than the waters of chaos ( δωρ) found in Genesis. Psalm 107:25 Psalm 107:26 Psalm 107:27 were at their wits’ end – The men do not call unto the L ORD until they exhaust every other option. Psalm 107:28 Psalm 107:29 he made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. – The Word of the L ORD has power over creation and that we do not understand. Psalm 107:30 Psalm 107:31 Let them thank the L ORD for his steadfast love, for his wonderful works to humankind. – This is the work of humanity. Psalm 107:32 Let them extol him in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders. – The witness of the men needs to be given in the temple and before the wise.



2 Corinthians 6:1-13

2 Corinthians 6:1 we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain – It seems that Paul is arguing that we should not receive (δέχο αι) God’s grace without thought (κενός). 2 Corinthians 6:2 now is the day of salvation – The act of saving that has happened in the past is also occurring for you today. 2 Corinthians 6:3 We are putting no obstacle in anyone’s way – There are no stumbling blocks (προσκοπή) or put more bluntly, no cases of sin, that might cause someone to stay away from Jesus. so that no fault may be found with our with our ministry – Literally, in order ( να) that the service (διακοναί) may not be blamed ( ω άο αι). 2 Corinthians 6:4 we have commended ourselves – Our actions have shown the faith that God has given us. Nothing has happened that will prove to you that we are not worthy of being your servants. 2 Corinthians 6:5 2 Corinthians 6:6 2 Corinthians 6:7 2 Corinthians 6:8 2 Corinthians 6:9 2 Corinthians 6:10 2 Corinthians 6:11 We have spoken frankly to you Corinthians – The Greek reads “Our mouth is open to you” (τ στό α ν νέ γεν πρ ς ς). our heart is wide open to you. – In the Greek, the word translated as heart it καρδία. Is Paul referring to the Jewish concept that the heart is the seat of knowledge and reason? In other words, is Paul telling the congregation at Corinth that his mind is completely open. 2 Corinthians 6:12 There is no restriction in our affections, but only in yours. – The Greek reads “You are not cramped by us but you are cramped in your own stomach” (ο στενοχωρε σθε ν ν στενοχωρε σθε δ ν το ς 3

σπλάγχνοις ν). In other words, “It is nor our feelings that are troubling, it is your upsetting feelings.” 2 Corinthians 6:13 open wide your hearts also – The Greek does not contain the word for heart it reads “widen also yourselves” (πλατύνθητε κα ε ς). This extra insertion of hearts along with the allusion to feelings in verse 12 makes it seem that Paul is arguing that emotions only are involved in this discussion. That is not the case. There is an intellectual difference between the two parties and the Corinthians cannot move from where they are located.


Mark 4:35-41

Recall that just before this account, Jesus asks a question of comparison. What is the Kingdom of God like (Mark 4:30)? The answer is rather surprising. Rather than selecting something strong and noble like the cedars that grow year after year (Ezekiel 17:22-23), Jesus identifies heaven with an insignificant annual plant, the mustard (Mark 4:31).1 This answer by Jesus might give us some insight on the way that the church is to function here on earth. This is the first crossing of the “Sea of Galilee” from the land of the Jews into that of the Gentiles and it comes as a turning point in the narrative.2 Both in the land of the Jews and the Gentiles, Jesus heals, feeds, and casts out daemons.3 The difference between the two locals is that He does not face opposition from the religious leaders.4 The ability to control the see in the Old Testament is a sign of God (Psalm 89:8-9, 106:8-9; Isaiah 51:9-10)5 The storm also functions as a metaphor for evil (Psalm 18:16, 69:2; 69:14-15).6 No matter what happens during the storms of life, believers should trust in the L ORD (Isaiah 43:2; Psalm 46:1-3).7 SALM 46 1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the


Kathryn Vitalis Hoffman and Mark Vitalis Hoffman, ‘Question Marks and Turning Points: Following the Gospel of Mark to Surprising Places’, Word & World, 26 (2006):1, p. 72. 2 John R. Donahue, S.J. and Daniel J. Harrington, S.J.; Idem, editor, The Gospel of Mark, Volume 2, Sacra Pagina, (Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 2002), p. 160. 3 Ibid. 4 Ibid. 5 Ibid. 6 Ibid. 7 Ibid.



mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; 3 Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah. (KJV) This portion of Mark is almost a “paraphrase” of Psalm 107:23-32.8 (This is the Psalm assigned for the day.) Note that Canaanite creation stories have a tale where the sea is defeated by a storm god.9 Mark 4:35 On that day, when evening had come – The storm might be more frightening at night. Let us go across to the other side. – It is not a particularly long trip from one side of the lake to the other because distance is only four and one-half miles.10 From the small number of commentaries that I have seen on this text it is interesting to note that they do no say much about the command by Jesus to go to the other side where the Gentile (wild things) are. Mark 4:36 they took him with them in the boat, just as he was – It is interesting that the author of Mark, who is sparse with his words, gives us this detail that Jesus does not prepare for the journey. The boat typically would have been about 26 feet long, 8 feet wide, and been able to carry 12 to 15 people.11 The phrase just as he was might refer to the location in the boat from Mark 4:1-2.12 Other boats were with him. – We never hear what happens to these boats and their crews. Maybe the crowd followed.13 Mark 4:37 A great gale – The Greek reads λα λαψ εγάλη νέ ου (fierce windstorm) and it implies as “tornado-style whirlwind.”14
Donahue and Harrington, Mark, p. 160. Ibid., p. 161. 10 Daniel J. Harrington, S.J.; Idem, editor, The Gospel of Matthew, Volume 1, Sacra Pagina, (Collegeville, Minnesota: The Liturgical Press, 1991), p. 224. 11 Donahue and Harrington, Mark, p. 157. 12 Ibid. 13 Ibid., p. 158. 14 Ibid.
9 8


Mark 4:38 he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion – According to NestleAland’s note in the Greek New Testament and Powell, this seems to be an allusion to Jonah 1:4-6.15 Later in Mark (Mark 13:34-37), Jesus speaks to a situation where the master appears to be missing and He tells His followers that we must remain faithful because we do not know the time He will return. Jesus would typically be on the “raised afterdeck” and He would be on a cushion that might also serve as ballast.16 Sleeping seems to indicate God’s protection (Proverbs 3:32-34; Psalm 3:5; 4:8; Job 11:18-19).17 Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing? – There are over one hundred questions that are asked in the Gospel according to St. Mark and they serve several purposes.18 They advance the dialog, they engage us in the story, and they cause us to reflect on what is happening.19 In the milieu that we live in, perhaps we need to consider the importance of the questions because it has become more and more apparent that we do not have the answers to many of life’s questions.20 Notice that the disciples question does not address the storm. They are used to that and understand its causes and consequences. They do not know why Jesus, who they have invested so much in, does not show some concern.21 The teacher not only controls the crowd but also the storm.22 There appears to be a severe and life threatening moment.23 Mark 4:39 He woke up – The Greek κα διεγερθε ς implies that Jesus stands completely up in the stern.24
Mark Allan Powell, ‘Echoes of Jonah in the New Testament’, Word & World, 27 (2007):2, p. 158. 16 Donahue and Harrington, Mark, p. 158. 17 Ibid. 18 Hoffman and Hoffman, ‘Question Marks and Turning Points’, p. 69. 19 Ibid. 20 Ibid., p. 70. 21 Ibid., p. 73. 22 Donahue and Harrington, Mark, p. 158. 23 Ibid. 24 Ibid.


rebuked the wind, and said to the sea – This should be seen as a single command.25 The Greek πετί ησεν (verb πιτι άω) for rebuked can be found with rebuking daemons or evil spirits (Mark 1:25; 3:12; 9:25; 10:48) but it normally does not mean exorcism.26 Paradoxically, here Jesus is in control but on the cross He is not since the powers of death win. Peace! Be still! – This is close to the command to the spirit in Mark 1:25.27 a dead calm – A direct contrast to the great storm.28 Mark 4:40 Why are you afraid? – Jesus asks a question that immediately puts us on the defensive. The adjective δειλοί is more than fear and it also implies a lack of courage.29 Have you still no faith? – !!! Faith in this Gospel is not just an intellectual item, but also has action in the face of danger (Mark 5:34, 36; 9:23-34; 10:52; 13:21).30 Recall that the disciples have been chosen (Mark 3:7-12), granted a look at the mystery of the kingdom (Mark 4:10-12) and learned from the Master (Mark 4:34).31 Also note that ο πω χω πίστις (not hold faith) is not the same as “no faith” ( πιστίαν) found in the Christ’s family (Mark 6:6) and the faithless ( πιστος) generation in Mark 9:19 (both from πιστος).32 Mark 4:41 And they were filled with great awe – More than likely, this refers to realization that Jesus is God.33
25 26

Donahue and Harrington, Mark, p. 159. Ibid., p. 158. 27 Ibid., p. 157. 28 Ibid., p. 159. 29 Ibid. 30 Ibid. 31 Ibid., p. 161. 32 Ibid. 33 Ibid., p. 159.


Donahue, S.J., John R. and Harrington, S.J., Daniel J.; Idem, editor, The Gospel of Mark, Volume 2, Sacra Pagina, (Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 2002). Harrington, S.J., Daniel J.; Idem, editor, The Gospel of Matthew, Volume 1, Sacra Pagina, (Collegeville, Minnesota: The Liturgical Press, 1991). Hoffman, Kathryn Vitalis and Hoffman, Mark Vitalis, ‘Question Marks and Turning Points: Following the Gospel of Mark to Surprising Places’, Word & World, 26 (2006):1, pp. 69–76. Powell, Mark Allan, ‘Echoes of Jonah in the New Testament’, Word & World, 27 (2007):2, pp. 157–164.


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