JOB 39

Here nine further creatures from the animal Kingdom are set before Job by Yahweh, making, along with the lion and the raven; a total of 11 for Job to consider.

These complex creatures anatomically, physically, physiologically, in their preferred habitats (mountains, plains, deserts, thickets, forests; rivers), in their beauty and power, and fearsome symmetry, where they graze, gallop, wallow and splash, delighting in their wonderful freedom, are all designed to teach certain spiritual lessons, and not a product of chance, but the Creator's handiwork, wonderfully displayed.

They are representative of various classes of mammals and birds occupying different ecological niches in the wild. All well known to Job and his fellows, family and friends.

"O taste and see that Yahweh is good." "For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine."

Psalm 104 is also a poem of praise to God's wonderful Creation.

"For thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created." (Rev 4.11). *

1 Knowest thou the time when the wild goats of the rock bring forth? or canst thou mark when the hinds do calve?

Wild goat (ibex) (mountain goat) (Hb.Yael) (Jdg 4.18-21) = the climber (Pslm. 104.18), and its beauty (Prov.5.19) . These creatures are wonderfully sure footed, and never slip on the most steepest and precipitous crags and slopes, and totally untameable. A miracle of sturdy independence standing on the rock (Mtt.7.24-27), above a precipice, they can spring down into the canyon going from wall to wall, with their cloven feet giving perfect grip and balance, a David in the wilderness (1 Sam.24.1, 2, Pslm 73.2) (En Gedi = fountain of the goat), where David hid from Saul.

Wild deer (hind)(fem.) Hb. Ayyal (Pv.5.19, Is.35.6, Song 2.8,9). Ajalon the main valley up to Jerusalem = the deer pasture. It is broad fertile valley opening onto the coastal plain yet accessible inland to the heights of Judea. Was ideal grazing location for these lovely tender creatures, game for wild beasts, yet blessed with fleet footedness in order to escape ( 2 Sam.22.34, Pslm.18.33, Hbk.3.19).

"He will make my feet like hinds' feet, and setteth me upon high places".

Naphtali "a hind let loose" (Gen 49) proved his worth in the battle against Jabin and Sisera (Jdg.5.l8)

In Israel's independence war 1948, terrific battles were fought in the Ajalon vicinity at Latrun, a strategic point near Emmaus. Hundreds of Israelis died at the hands of the Jordanians who held this position until 1967.

This victory was recapitulated in 1967, and the way to Jerusalem opened up (Rev. 16. 12, Zech.12). In these battles Israel was the hind of the dawn.

David as the hind in the chase thirsted for the water brooks, for the living God (Pslm 42.1).

2 Canst thou number the months that they fulfil? or knowest thou the time when they bring forth?

Did Job know their hidden ways and time of birth? Probably a five month cycle (5, grace), their young agile from birth. *

8 The range of the mountains is his pasture, and he searcheth after every green thing.

Wild ass (v.6-8): (Job,6.5, 11.12, 24.5, Is.32.14, Jer.2.24, 14.6, Hos.8.9).

This was a solitary creature, untameable, unlike the domestic ass, avoiding human settlement, and dwelling in the wilderness, emblematic of natural rebellious Israel who would not be tamed (Jer.2.24, Hos.8.9).

Ishmael is likened to the wild ass, a wild man (Gen. 16. 12).

The domestic ass was a faithful beast of burden (Zech.9.9) in contrast to Israel after the flesh (a wild ass) who could not be tamed (Mic.4, Hos.6, Jer.7). *

9 Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee, or abide by thy crib?

10 Canst thou bind the unicorn with his band in the furrow? or will he harrow the valleys after thee?

11 Wilt thou trust him, because his strength is great? or wilt thou leave thy labour to him?

12 Wilt thou believe him, that he will bring home thy seed, and gather it into thy barn?

Wild Ox (Hb.reem) translated unicorn. This is the aurochs, a creature, untameable, of prodigious strength, a violent, temperamental and dangerous animal, equipped with twin massive horns, it was impossible to yoke him and draw the plough or pull the cart; closely related to the bison or N. American buffalo.

Ephraim (diaspora Jews) will fight their way back to the land pushing like a reem against their enemies (Deut.33.17), Israel's strength at this time (Nu.23.22).

The bulls of Bashan gored Christ (Ps.22.21)

The domestic ox, in contrast, was a faithful labouring beast of burden under the guiding yoke.

"Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light" (Mtt.11.28-30).

This was a mature ox - yoked to it young immature oxen which would learn its ways. There are many references to the faithful ox, which was used in sacrifice (1Kgs.19.l9, Lk.14.11, Hos.10:l l, lSam.6.7, 1Chron.12.l4). The ox goad was necessary at times (Jdg.3.31, 1 Sam.13.21, Ecc12.11). *


Bro Richard Lister

13 Gavest thou the goodly wings unto the peacocks? or wings and feathers unto the ostrich?

Of course Job could do neither. The peacock with its magnificent tail feathers in the male bird which it can fan out in a majestic display. There is no pigment in these feathers, all light interference; so how could this creature evolve such advance technology, and programme its plumage in such a precise mathematical way to produce a rational precisely co-ordinated design which would defy a mathematician? This totally confutes evolution.

On the other hand, the ostrich's characteristics couldn't be more different. It is a large flightless bird, which has the speed of a racehorse, yet forgets where it has laid its eggs, and is liable to tread on them and crush them. Here are obvious spiritual lessons, relating to responsibility to nurture ones young {Pv.22.6). The materialist of this world see none of this and is dumb beyond worshipping the creature more than the Creator Rom, 1.20. *

19 Hast thou given the horse strength? hast thou clothed his neck with thunder?

20 Canst thou make him afraid as a grasshopper? the glory of his nostrils is terrible.

A wonderful description is given of the horse in battle array, in the cavalry charge ...

This could easily be a description of the charge of the Light Brigade (Crimean War), or the charge of the 21st lancers at Omdurman, 1898, or indeed the charge of the Australian Light Horse at Beer Sheva (1917), or Custer's Last Stand. The horse is a beast of burden, but in Israel was also a symbol of pride, as anyone sat on a horse is elevated above the common herd.

The Psalmist says

"Some trust in chariots and some in horses: but we will remember the name of Yahweh our God."

In Israel the judges rode on asses (Jdg 5:10), a sign of humility, and Christ came to Jerusalem on the colt the foal of an ass, not a prancing steed like Bucephalus (Zech.9).

Horses in numbers were forbidden to a king under the law (Deut.17.16) yet Solomon had thousands (1 Kgs 4.26). Jehu was noted for riding his chariot and horse furiously, against Jezebel and the "apostate priests of Baal, typifying Christ's war against Apostasy. Yet he will ride on the cherubim, the spirit's horses, and upon white horses (Israel) (Pslm.68, Deut.33. 26, Rev. 19.1 1-14) and Judah is his goodly horse in battle (Zech 10:3).

The brazen hoofs of the Spirit's horse will thresh the nations (Mic.4:13), and Zechariah's vision of the 4 horses in company with man among the myrtle trees, subdue the nations until at rest (Zech.I.8-11). The Four horses of the Apocalypse bring pagan Rome crashing down (Rev.6), as will the Spirit's horses bring down all the nations papal and pagan. (Rev. 19. I 1-14). *

26 Doth the hawk fly by thy wisdom, and stretch her wings toward the south?

27 Doth the eagle mount up at thy command, and make her nest on high?

28 She dwelleth and abideth on the rock, upon the crag of the rock, and the strong place.

29 From thence she seeketh the prey, and her eyes behold afar off.

30 Her young ones also suck up blood: and where the slain are, there is she.

These deadly raptors designed to consume flesh represent the Spirit, and the eagle forms one of the four faces of the Cherubim, whose mission is to destroy flesh (Ezk. 1, Mtt. 24.28), yet the saints shall mount up with wings as eagles, as Elohim (Is. 40.31).


Bro Richard Lister