As you move through Job’s discourses, you get the feeling – at least I do – that Job is conflicted about more than just his circumstances. He is conflicted his understanding of God too.
For example: In chapter 21 Job complains that the evil-doer gets away with his evil deeds. He prospers and seems blessed against all reason, and nothing is done about it. In chapter 24, Job complains of the same thing, but there he acknowledges that eventually, the wicked get their comeuppance. Do you see how he waffles on his own beliefs?
And I think Job knows it. For him, the answers to his questions are beyond him.
All this makes chapter 28 so very important for faith but before we look at its point, notice this: According to Job’s words here, very early in Bible history, people of Job’s experience were mining deep within the earth. They mine to secure precious stones and metals, digging tunnels through the rocks. I can only imagine (as someone who has a difficult time with confined spaces and being “below ground”) how difficult and dangerous that work was in Job’s time. The cost in human effort and lives would make whatever was mined incredibly precious.
But that’s Job’s point: when it comes to wisdom, knowing how to live and having the answers of life is even more precious. Job knows that. He also knows that with all his past wealth, none of it would be sufficient to buy him answers. Answers come from wisdom, and wisdom is to be found solely with God.