Job – Chapter 26

Don't Leave Me Hanging

By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

Job answers Bildad:

“What have you possibly contributed to the conversation? Who doesn’t know that? You state common knowledge as if it’s some profound insight! Don’t presume to tell me, because I know more about G-d than you do.”

“Hell lies concealed in the deepest depths, but G-d can see it all quite clearly. He suspends the world so that it hangs in space without supports. He binds water together in the form of clouds and it doesn’t rain down in one big puddle. He surrounds His Heavenly throne with a cover of cloud” (as we saw in the first chapter of Ezekiel). “G-d set a boundary for the seas, which will endure so long as there’s night and day.” (The Ibn Ezra says that verse 10 refers to the horizon, “the place where light ends, so that above it is light and below it is darkness.”)

“The pillars of Heaven shook when G-d set them in place and they were amazed when He commanded them to stand firm. He caused the sea to fold up (when the Jews left Egypt) and He made the Heavens like a tent. He punished the Egyptians and struck down the Pharaoh” (compared here to a serpent).

“And yet,” Job says, “these are among the smallest of G-d’s mighty deeds. But what can we learn from them? Who can understand the thunder of G-d’s actions?”

Once again, we have to be impressed that Job knows that Earth is “hanging” suspended in space. Of course, he may have had some “inside information.” (This is especially true if we subscribe to the opinion that Moses wrote the Book of Job and that it is he who put the words into all the characters’ mouths.)

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