Job 9:12-Accepting God’s Sovereignty, but Questioning His Love

Job 9:12 Behold, he taketh away, who can hinder him? who will say unto him, What doest thou?

The book of Job is hard for me to understand sometimes because it seems as if he constantly is moving from faith in God to bitterness.  It’s true that in the beginning he still held fast to his integrity though God was unjust (2:3) but soon we find him asking God for death (3:1) (editors note:  the lack of comfort from Job’s friends would have something to do with this).

Job chapters nine and ten is an interesting contrast with faith and bitterness as Job in 9:12 points out God’s sovereignty (complete control) means nobody can question Him, yet a few verses later he takes it on himself to question the justice and goodness of God.


Job 9:17 For he breaketh me with a tempest, and multiplieth my wounds without cause.
Job 9:18 He will not suffer me to take my breath, but filleth me with bitterness.

Job 9:22 ¶ This is one thing, therefore I said it, He destroyeth the perfect and the wicked.
Job 9:23 If the scourge slay suddenly, he will laugh at the trial of the innocent.

Job 10:1 ¶ My soul is weary of my life; I will leave my complaint upon myself; I will speak in the bitterness of my soul.
Job 10:2 I will say unto God, Do not condemn me; shew me wherefore thou contendest with me.

Job 10:3 Is it good unto thee that thou shouldest oppress, that thou shouldest despise the work of thine hands, and shine upon the counsel of the wicked?

I personally believe this swinging back and forth from faith to bitterness is partially because Job’s judgment didn’t originally come because of sin…however in a way it has to do with his questioning the love of God.

There was no right on the part of Job or anybody else to question the authority of God (what doest thou in 9:12) because He was the one who created them, and obviously controlled everything that happened.

But at the same time we do see him question the GOODNESS of God (he multiplieth my wounds without cause, destroyeth the perfect and the wicked).  In other words God is viewed as unfair tyrant who must be obeyed, even though his actions aren’t just.


The scary thing about Job’s struggle (believing in God’s sovereignty but questioning His goodness) is it’s a very common experience.  All of us have submitted to the Will of God (His sovereignty) while at the same time questioning His love (having a bad attitude). This may not seem like a big deal at first (after all we are obeying God) until we realize Satan attacks our belief in His love first.

When Satan came to Eve he focused on the ONE THING they couldn’t eat in the garden, and used it to make her question God’s love .  I like how Sally-Loyd Jones describes his temptation in the “Jesus Storybook Bible”

As soon as Satan saw his chance he slithered silently up to Eve.  “Does God really love you?”  the serpent whispered.  “If he does, why won’t he let you eat the nice, juicy, delicious fruit?  Poor you, perhaps God doesn’t want you to be happy.”

The snakes words hissed into her ears and sunk down into her heart, like poison.  “Does God love me?”  Eve wondered.  Suddenly she didn’t know anymore

Satan likes to tell us submitting to the sovereignty of God while questioning His love isn’t that big of a deal.  But eventually that whispered questioning of God’s love will lead to direct rebellion against the sovereignty of God.  It’s just impossible to believe God is complete control while questioning whether or not He is loving.

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