Leviathan Versus Behemoth (Job 3-9)

Not made of stone, Job freaks out, like any normal person would do given his situation. Job “opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth” (Job 3:1). And how!

Job goes on and on about the day he was born and how it should be consumed by darkness so that it never came to pass at all. It’s such a protracted and poetic speech that I think Job actually believes it’s possible to alter the past. Maybe he believes in time travel. I don’t know. It hasn’t been mentioned in the Bible (yet) but I’ve been suprised by lots of other things (giants, for example).

In the midst of cursing the day he was born, Job does a shout-out to Leviathan, a scary monster. I’m not exactly sure what a Leviathan is, unless we’re counting Thomas Hobbes’ political treatiseĀ or the 1989 underwater horror movie (a genre I quite like). I remember watching that movie as a kid. It’s one of those movies in which a crew of misfits has to go do some dangerous task together and things go horribly wrong and they all turn on each other. One of them usually has a stupid nickname; in this case, it’s “6-pack”. Here’s the trailer (best line = “Whatver got 6-pack and Bowman, it’s still out there”):

As far as the biblical creature goes, a Leviathan is a large sea serpent, a much less friendly version of the Loch Ness monster. The etymology is such that the name “Leviathan” comes out of the Hebrew word(s) for twisted, or coiled. Apparently it gets described later on in Job. Reading through some very unreliable online sources, I learned that Leviathan once has a lady friend (aw!) named Taninim but God killed her because if they got around to mating they’d do all kinds of damage. How sad for him. Poor Leviathan. Leviathan will also do battle with another imposing creature called the Behemoth, which is kind of like a large, vicious ox. This would be good to see – evenly matched but very difference strengths, like Alien vs. Predator. I also learned that Leviathan eats exactly one whale per day.

He just wants his lady friend back.

Published in: on January 13, 2012 at 2:25 am  Leave a Comment  
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