In Job 39.1-30 Yehovah speaks of the animals cut off from the care of man, but are cared for by Yehovah, like mountain goats, wild donkeys and the wild ox. Does Job know when they give birth? No, but it happens, and they grow in the open field and provide for themselves. They avoid the cities and choose to live alone. Not being tamed, they are not used for wagons or ridden (v 1-12).
In Job 39.13-18 God asks if he understands the ostrich. Can Job explain why a bird with wings can’t fly? The ostrich forgets where she laid her eggs and is unconcerned because God has made her forget wisdom. But she can lift herself eight feet or higher and laughs at the horse and the rider because they can’t catch her very easy. God is showing Job strange examples and what he has created that Job can’t explain.
In Job 39.19-25 he asks Job if he understands the horse. Where does it get its strength and can Job create one and give the horse its mane and make it snort? The horse pans in the valley where the battle is and laughs at fear. He is not afraid of all the weapons around him and races over the ground to confront the enemy. He is pleased when he hears the trumpet. Can Job give an explanation for this attitude in war? But even a well-trained horse can throw off the restraints, so it is never totally under man’s control.
Then in Job 39.26-30 Yehovah brings up the hawk. can Job explain how it soars? Can Job command and eagle? It lives on high, in an inaccessible place. Its young sucks up the blood of the slain (like at the Feast of Leviathan-Luke 17.37, Matt 24.28, Rev 19.21). Since Job is so ignorant of the natures of these creatures, how can he dispute with God about his dealings?
Job 40.1-2 begins by saying, “Will the faultfinder contend with the almighty? Let him who reproves God answer it.” What can Job say at this point? He says he is insignificant and says he will lay his hand on his mouth (or stop talking). Job thought God was absent in all his afflictions but now knows that is untrue after all the examples just given in Job 39 of God’s activity with nature. This leaves Job without words (v 3-5).
Job 40.6-7 it says that he answers Job out of the storm that is upon him. He tells Job to “gird up his loins” and prepare to answer him. He says, “Will you really annul my judgments” (by making your judgments? Will Job condemn God? There is no way of vindicating his innocence and integrity without charging the Lord with unrighteousness. Or does Job think he was an “arm” (power) like God (v 8-9). If he has that power, then Job is to do the things only God can do. Well, Job knows he has no power to do what God does and he knows where his place really is. Since he can’t, he can’t save himself by his own right hand either (v 10-14).
Job 40.15-24 now describes a creature called the Behemoth, which God has made. Behemoth means “great beasts” and most scholars believe this refers to the hippopotamus, but this description does not fit any known animal. This could be a dinosaur that he is describing (along with Leviathan in Job 41) hundreds of years after the flood of Noah, but the description does not match a dinosaur in what it does (like 41.3 “will he speak to you softly?” Dinosaurs don’t do that). The word “dinosaur” was not used till about 1841, and the Bible calls them “dragons” or “great beasts” (Behemoth) in Gen 1. For more information on this subject go to the website “Creation Worldview” by Dr. Grady McMurtry and look for the video called “Dinomania.” You can also view it on YouTube.
We are going to look at the text in Job first, then we will look at the eschatological meanings of the Behemoth. We will also do this with the Leviathan (twisted serpent) on Job 41.1-34. The Behemoth (“Behemot” in Hebrew) is another example of God’s greatness and to show how weak Job really is. If he can’t bring the Behemoth under control, the lowest animals of which he only selects one from the land and one from the sea, how can Job govern the world and question the Lord on how he does it?
The Behemoth eats grass like an ox and his strength is in his loins and muscles. He bends his tail like a cedar, meaning it is smooth, thick and round. But he is not saying it is as long as a cedar. He is put together in strength and his bones are “like tubes of bronze” and limbs are “like bars of iron” (strong). He is the first of God’s way and God has given him a “sword” (teeth). The narrative goes on to describe its food (grass), and he lies down in the reeds and marches (covertly) and is not afraid of a fast moving river. He is confident, though the Jordan River rushes into his mouth. He can “throw it out” with great force. Can anyone capture him by open force? The answer is no!
Now, the Behomoth is also an eschatological picture of the False Prophet, just as Leviathan is an eschatological picture of the False Messiah. So, we are going to look at these two creatures as a study of two eschatological “beasts” coming from the land (the Behemoth/False Prophet-Rev 13.11) and the sea (Leviathan/False Messiah-Rev 13.1-2 ). These “beasts” are also a picture of of Assyria (Gog and Magog/Russia) and Egypt (Europe) in prophecy. So, let’s take an eschatological look at the Behomoth and then Leviathan.
We will notice in Job 40.15-24 and Job 41.1-33 that two “beasts” are presented. We have briefly gone over the Behemoth, so let’s briefly talk about Leviathan in the text, and then look at them prophetically.
Leviathan is a sea creature who is presented as a creature that is very powerful . Humans are powerless against him. He is first mentioned in Job 3.8 and how sailors were fearful of him. The name “Leviathan” means “twisted serpent” (Lev’yitan) and is mentioned in Psa 74.12-14; Psa 104.26; Isa 27.1; Isa 51.9 and Job 26.12-13 to name a few places. Job was powerless against Leviathan just like he is powerless against Satan. Only Yehovah can defeat both of them (Job 41.1-9)
The point Yehovah makes in Job 41.10 is, “Who then is he that can stand before me.” If Job can’t control Leviathan, who is Job to contend with God who has the power to defeat Leviathan. Only God can make war with him (Psa 74.13-14).
Leviathan is described in Job 41.12-17 to make the point that Job has no chance against him. He sneezes flash forth light (expelling his breath, having held it under water. Rays of sun light hit the water and it looks like fire. In Job 41.22-34 it talks about the power of Leviathan. Who is able to stand against him, and the last verse says, “He is king over all the sons of pride” (Hebrew “Rahab”).
Eschatologically, the behemoth and Leviathan are two beasts. The Behemoth is on land and Leviathan is from the sea. They will represent the False Prophet who comes from the land (Rev 13.11), and Leviathan comes from the sea (Rev 13.1; Ezek 29.3, 32.2; Psa 74.13). God says, “Will he make supplications to you, or will he speak to you with soft words (Job 41.3)?” Dan 7.8, 7.20 and 11.21 says the False Messiah will flatter with his words.
Job 41.6 says, “Will the companions make a banquet of him” celebrating his capture and defeat? Yes, at the Feast of Leviathan after Yeshua returns. Job 41.8 says that once you battle him you won’t want to do it again, meaning “who can make war with him.” This alludes to the False Messiah in Rev 13.4 where it says, “who is like the beast, and who is able to make war with him?”
Job 41.34 talks about pride, and that is a characteristic of the False Messiah and those who follow him (Dan 11.36). The word “pride” is “Rahab” in Hebrew and that word has several meanings. It means “Egypt, broad, prostitute and pride” (Job 9.13, 26.12, Isa 30.6-7, Ezek 32.2). Rahab is another name for the False Messiah and Leviathan (Isa 51.9, 27.1; Job 9.13; Psa 74.13-14). Leviathan is “king over all the sons of Rahab” (John 8.44). We have more information on the False Messiah, Leviathan and Rahab in our prophecy teachings and in our study of the False Messiah called “Torah and New Testament Foundations-The False Messiah” on this site.
So, these beasts in Job 40 and 41 correspond to the two beasts in Rev 13. However, there is another application to this. The Behemoth alludes to Assyria/Gog and Magog/Russia, and Leviathan alludes to Egypt/Europe. We know from prophecy that Behemoth (Assyria/Gog and Magog/Russia) will be at war with Egypt/Europe. Isa 20.1-6 describes a three year war between Assyria and Egypt. Eschatologically, we know that things that happened before will happen again and this war between Assyria and Egypt is a picture of a three year war between Russia and Europe and the False Messiah during the first three years of the birth-pains (tribulation). Russia will be winning this conventional war, and feeling confident, Russia (Gog and Magog) will invade Israel on Rosh Ha Shanah at the beginning of the fourth year of the birth-pains, and be destroyed by Yehovah on Yom Kippur.
In the Scriptures, Pharaoh is king over Egypt and he is a picture of the False Messiah who will rule over Europe after the Natzal (rapture) and the destruction of Babylon (USA), as seen in Jer 50-51; Isa 13, Isa 14; Isa 18; Isa 21; Isa 24; Isa 25; Isa 47; Isa 48; Rev 14.8; Rev 17 and Rev 18. For a detailed study of this subject see our teaching called “Is America Babylon?” on this site.
In Jewish Eschatology, this battle between Behemoth and Leviathan can be seen in a prayer called “Akdamut” (introductions) recited on Shavuot. In the “Complete Artscroll Siddur” by Mesorah Publications, p. 719, a portion of this prayer says, “Our predetermined portions having been set aside with elevation, they sport with Leviathan and the ox of lofty mountains-when they interlock with one another and engage in combat, with his horns the Behemoth will gore with strength, the fish will leap to meet him with his fins, with power. Their creator will approach them with his mighty sword (Messiah and the Torah to defeat them). A banquet for the righteous will he prepare and feast. They will sit around tables of precious stones and gems, before them will be flowing rivers of balsam. They will delight and drink their fill from overflowing goblets of sweet wine that since creation was prepared in pressing tanks.”
The Feast of Leviathan is reserved for the unrighteous when Messiah comes (Ezek 29.1-7, 32.1-8; Isa 66.23-24; Matt 24.27-28; Luke 17.37; Rev 19.21. In the sowd (hidden, deeper level) Job 40-41 is a character study of the False Messiah and the False Prophet. In the Peshat (literal) level, God is using two of his creatures to show Job that if he can’t bring under control these two lower animals (compared to man), how can he possibly govern the world and question the Lord on how he does things.
In Job 42.1-17 we have the final chapter of Job, and Job finally gets to answer the Lord, with repentance for his lack of knowledge. He says that he knows that God can do all things after Yehovah has shown him his power over creation. Job has presumed many things because of his lack of knowledge and understanding of God’s ways. He says, “Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?” Job admits it is him (v 3). Job also says he has said things without understanding, things that are hidden from him.
With humility, and without complaining, he says, “Hear now, and I will speak, I will ask you, and do instruct me. I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you. Therefore, I retract (my words) and repent in dust and ashes (v 4-5).” Job accused God of doing all these things to him and demanded an answer, and Job now realizes he went too far, and God has finally revealed himself to him. Now Job understands what God has been showing him.
Up to now, Job has only “heard” about God, but now he “sees” him for himself, without the theology of others. Job in some ways was a “religious” man but did not have much of a personal experience to this level yet. He knew about God, but he didn’t “know” him. We are to believe that God controls all things because he just showed Job he did, and God’s ways are right because they are his ways, not because we finally “see” they are his ways. James 5.11 gives the purpose for these things, and God kept Job from evil during his afflictions (Jude 24; Col 1.17; Phil 2.13).
Job 42.7-9 tells us that God was displeased with Job’s three friends. It is not that what they knew about the Lord was wrong, they said God was just, reproves sin, delivers from trouble etc (Job 5.17-27). Its just that they were ignorant of God’s hidden purposes. Job’s suffering was great, but their words only made things worse. Yehovah tells them to take seven bulls and seven rams and go to Job and offer up a Korban Olah for themselves and Job, and Job would pray for them (forgive them). For then the Lord will accept him and Yehovah will not do with them according to their foolishness. This is because they have not spoken of the Lord what is right, as Job has done.
So, Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar went and did what the Lord had commanded, and the the Lord accepted Job’s prayer for them. God does not mention Elihu and dismisses him entirely, which is interesting. They all presented Yehovah as angry and performing judgment of Job, which he wasn’t, and this is what kindled God’s anger against them.
In Job 42.10-17 it says that God restored Job and freed him from his distress after he prayed for his three friends. Job was an outcast, even among his own family (Job 19.13-14), but now he has been restored to them as well. They comforted him and gave him gifts to help make up for his losses.
And so Yehovah blessed the latter years of Job more than what he had at the beginning. He doubled his possessions and he had seven more sons and three more daughters. And on top of that, he lived 140 more years and saw his children and grandchildren for four generations, and died an old man and full of days.
Finally, in an interesting note to remember, Job never does find out what we all knew from the beginning. He never finds out that all of his troubles are the result of the dispute between God and Satan as to whether Job would curse God and remain faithful. God knew he would because God “kept him.” And this is a fitting ending for us, too. We may never know why God has allowed certain trials into our life, and we should especially be careful when judging what’s happening to others. God does not need anyone’s permission to do what he does. Job trusted God in his trials, and we should, too. This book shows us that in the final analysis, the “whys” don’t really matter.