Can you draw out Leviathan with a fishhook?
Or press down his tongue with a cord?
Can you put a rope in his nose
Or pierce his jaw with a hook? Job 42:12
Having spent the first semester of last year’s Sunday school engaged in a discussion of Biblical hermeneutics – the science of interpretation of Scripture – this coming semester we will endeavor to apply that somewhat abstract concept to a concrete Bible study. With God’s grace and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, at the Elders’ request your correspondent will endeavor to lead and moderate a thirteen-week study and discussion of Job – the eighteenth book of the Old Testament. Our textbook for the class is simply the Holy Bible. I am recommending, however (as we learned from our textbook last year), that we each obtain a good, functional biblical translation, preferably a reference or a study Bible. Additionally, each student is encouraged to find a decent commentary to advise our classroom discussion. I am using Tremper Longman III’s Job: Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalms (Ada, Mich.: Baker Academic; 2012) (ISBN-10: 0801031079) and Francis I. Anderson’s Job: Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries (Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Academic; 2009) (ISBN-10: 0830842144). Commentaries are available in hard-copy, in software versions, and even on-line. Now that we have approached a methodology concerning how to learn from Scripture (I styled last year’s class “Learning to Fish”), so this year we will be undertaking a prolonged discussion about what does this monumental book of the Bible actually mean to us as twenty-first century Reformed evangelical Christians (hence the title “Fishing for Leviathan”).
I have prepared a syllabus dividing the book up into twelve segments, along the generally recognized lines of commentary, with the first week focused on an introductory discussion of the hermeneutical issues we identified last year. I intend to continue to build with you a covenant believing community from the Sunday School class – a group of disciples of Christ committed to learning the wisdom, beauty, and meaning of Scripture – so, as has been our practices in classes past, we will commence promptly at 9:30 am and adjourn at 10:30 am, attend regularly, prepare thoroughly, participate vigorously, interact courteously, and learn prayerfully.
by Doug Rose