When he gives quietness, who then can make trouble? and when he hides his face, who then can behold him? whether it be done against a nation, or against a man only:
All Commentaries on Job 34:29 Go To Job 34
Gregory The Dialogist
32. Let no one then discuss, why the Gentile world lay so long in unbelief, while the Jewish people was yet standing, and why the sin of unbelief overthrew the Jewish people, as the Gentile world rose to belief. [Rom. 11, 20] Let no one discuss, why one is drawn on, as of a free gift, and the other repelled according to its deserts. For if thou art surprised at the adoption of the Gentiles, When He giveth peace, who is there to condemn? If thou art startled at the loss of the Jews, Since He hath hidden His face, who is there that can look on Him? So the counsel of supreme and hidden power becomes the satisfaction of evident reason. Whence also the Lord in the Gospel says, when speaking on the subject of this matter, I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father. [Matt. 11, 25] And He immediately adds, as a kind of reason for this concealment and revealing, For so it hath seemed good before Thee. [Matt. 11, 26] In which words, in truth, we learn a pattern of humility, that we may not rashly presume to discuss the Divine counsels concerning the call of the one and the rejection of the others. For after He had mentioned both points, He did not at once give a reason, but said that it was thus well pleasing to God; pointing out, namely, this very point, that that cannot be unjust, which has seemed good to the Just One. Whence also He says, when paying the labourers in the vineyard, on equalling in compensation those who were unequal in work, and when he who had toiled longest asked for greater pay, Didst thou not agree with Me for a penny? I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. Is it not lawful for Me to do what I will with Mine own? [Matt. 20, 13-15] In all things then which are outwardly disposed by Him, the righteousness of His secret will is an evident cause of reason. Let it be said therefore. For when He giveth peace, who is there to condemn? since He hath hidden His face, who is there that can look on Him? And because God judges the least, in the same way as the greatest, things, and the doings of individuals, as those of all men, it is fitly subjoined, Both over a nation, and over all men.
33. As if we were plainly directed to observe, that this judgment which is spoken of over a single nation, is also exercised over all men, by an invisible examination; so that one man is secretly elected, and another rejected, but no one unjustly. This then which we see happening in the greatest cases, let us also anxiously fear in ourselves separately. For the Divine judgments are displayed in the same manner over a single soul as over a single city; and again in the same way over a single city, as over a single nation: and over a single nation, as over the whole multitude of the human race. Because the Lord is as attentive to particular persons, as though unconcerned with the world at large; and again so directs His attention to all at once, as though unconcerned with individuals. For He Who fills all things with His dispensation, rules by filling them, and when ordering one single thing, is still present in all, and again, when ordering the world at large, is present with each individual; in fact, works all things without moving, by the power of His own nature. What marvel, then, that He, when intent on any thing, is not confined to it, Who works still at rest? Let it be said then that He exercises this searching judgment both over a nation, and over all men. Because he has passed then from species to genus, he now turns himself from genus to species, and shews what Judaea properly deserves.