There are several mentions of “monsters” in the book of Job. Some argue that they refer to dinosaurs, elephants, rhinos, crocodiles, or mythological creatures like dragons.  Since they are most frequently seen as God’s enemy, I’d see them more as symbolic of all evil that attempts to put itself in God’s place.

The mention of “sea monsters” is even more frequent. It identifies the sea as the enemy of righteousness, possibly because it houses or is the hiding place of the “chaos” of Genesis one. The earth was formless and void and “chaos” seems to be the culprit. The spirit of God hovered over the waters to do battle with “chaos” and to  recreate a world that may have been destroyed by the rebellion of the angels, for his new creation, man.

When Job sings the greatness of God he speaks of God’s superiority over these creatures. He says, “It is his strength that conquered the sea; by his skill he destroyed the monster Rahab. It is his breath that made the sky clear, and his hand that killed the escaping monster.” The sea and its monsters speak to us of the chaos in life and the confusion of life and as seen in Job the suffering in life that seems to stand in contrast to a loving God. Job is at a loss to deal with his circumstances especially since he realizes that all such things are truly under God’s divine sovereignty.

It’s in suffering that we too are at a loss to understand God’s mysterious ways. We see things through a dark, cloudy glass, but one day we will see things as they really are. Just as it’s God’s “breath” (or Spirit) that makes the sky clear, according to Job, it will be His spirit that ultimately removes the veil which masks our comprehension.

In the last book of the Bible, Revelation,  in an early chapter, we read that before the throne in heaven there is a sea of glass. The cruel sea, dreaded home of sea monsters and all chaos, is now conquered, cleansed and in perfect peace.  At the end of the book of Revelation  21:1 says, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.”


“What are people that you should make so much of us that you should think of us so often?  For you examine us every morning and test us every moment.” (Job 7:17-18)