Layton Talbert reflects on Job 26:14a: “Behold, these are but the outskirts [“outer fringe,” NIV] of his ways.”
“These are the mere edges of His ways.” The word edges (KJV, “parts”) denotes a termination, a boundary line or coastline, an edge or corner. What we can discern of the infinite God from His works in nature and history are the mere coastlines of the continent of the mind and character of God. Imagine landing for the first time on the seventeenth-century American continent. You have no idea that the sand onto which you step is the fringe of a continuous landmass over 3,000 miles wide and 9,500 miles long. Imagine formulating views of what this whole continent is like based on what you can see from the bay where you drop anchor. Suppose you forge your way five miles inland, or even fifty miles, to get a better idea of what this new country is like. As tangible and verifiable as what you see is, you are experiencing a minuscule fraction of an unimaginable stretch of vast and varied terrain yet to be explored—massive and multiple mountain ranges, trackless prairies, impenetrable forests, mammoth lakes and mighty rivers with deafening waterfalls, swamps and deserts, flora and fauna yet unknown. How much more there is to know about our magnificently infinite God than what we can see from where we are, only eternity can tell.
–Beyond Suffering: Discovering the Message of Job (Greenville, SC: Bob Jones University Press, 2007), 146.
Related: A few years ago I reviewed Talbert’s book and linked to MP3s of his sermons on Job.