Then Job answered the Lord and said:
“I know that you can do all things,
and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
‘Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?’
Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
‘Hear, and I will speak;
I will question you, and you make it known to me.’
I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear,
but now my eye sees you;
therefore I despise myself,
and repent in dust and ashes.”
Matthew Henry explains:
I have hidden counsel without knowledge. I have ignorantly overlooked the counsels and designs of God in afflicting me, and therefore have quarrelled with God, and insisted too much upon my own justification: Therefore I uttered that which I understood not,” that is, “I have passed a judgment upon the dispensations of Providence, though I was utterly a stranger to the reasons of them.”
“I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear many a time from my teachers when I was young, from my friends now of late. I have known something of thy greatness, and power, and sovereign dominion; and yet was not brought, by what I heard, to submit myself to thee as I ought. The notions I had of these things served me only to talk of, and had not a due influence upon my mind. But now thou hast by immediate revelation discovered thyself to me in thy glorious majesty; now my eyes see thee; now I feel the power of those truths which before I had only the notion of, and therefore now I repent, and unsay what I have foolishly said.”
Note, (1.) It is a great mercy to have a good education, and to know the things of God by the instructions of his word and ministers. Faith comes by hearing, and then it is most likely to come when we hear attentively and with the hearing of the ear.
(2.) When the understanding is enlightened by the Spirit of grace our knowledge of divine things as far exceeds what we had before as that by ocular demonstration exceeds that by report and common fame. By the teachings of men God reveals his Son to us; but by the teachings of his Spirit he reveals his Son in us (Gal. 1:16), and so changes us into the same image, 2 Cor. 3:18.
Let us… make it our care, in the strength of his grace, to govern ourselves and our own hearts well.