Tag Archives: God’s Sovereignty

Things Deep and Mysterious

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!

Rom 11:33 ESV

I’m a pastor-theologian, I enjoy theological discussions as much as the next pastor-theologian. However, there are times when discussions need to end and worship should begin. Theological discussion is only helpful if it leads to awe-inspired adoration, mind-exulting praise, and heart-searching holiness for our Lord Jesus Christ. God is deep and mysterious and to think that we might ever figure him out goes beyond human pride and self-deception.

Important as it is that we recognize God working in us, I would yet warn against a too-great preoccupation with the thought. It is a sure road to sterile passivity. God will not hold us responsible to understand the mysteries of election, predestination, and the divine sovereignty.

The best and safest way to deal with these truths is to raise our eyes to God and in deepest reverence say, “O Lord, Thou knowest.” Those things belong to the deep and mysterious profound of God’s omniscience. Prying into them may make theologians, but it will never make saints.

A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God (Camp Hill, PA: Wingspread, 1982), 64.

Indeed, God is in Control

 

Then Daniel praised the God of heaven. He said, “Praise the name of God forever and ever, for he has all wisdom and power. He controls the course of world events.

Daniel 2:19-21

God’s sovereignty is the biblical truth that God is the King and has legal authority over all his creation. God reigns and nothing is a surprise to him, nothing is by chance, and nothing is beyond his purpose and workings. The fact that God is sovereign should bring us great peace: our lives are not just a series of random events and lucky breaks.

The sovereignty of God is his powerful might working his purposes in and through our circumstances, irrespective, of Satan’s wicked devices and man’s evil intentions. You and I can be thankful for the Lord by his sovereignty is working his appointment in the midst of our disappointments. My life and yours has meaning, purpose, and divine direction. The bad breaks in life when submitted to God can bring spiritual growth and intimacy with Jesus. Indeed, God is in control.

Things were in God’s plan which I had not planned at all. I am coming to the living faith and conviction that – from God’s point of view – there is no chance and that the whole of my life, down to every detail, has been mapped out in God’s divine providence and makes complete and perfect sense in God’s all-seeing eyes.

St. Edith Stein

HT: Quote Catholic

 

Not a God of Confusion

All the people of the earth are nothing compared to him. He does as he pleases among the angels of heaven and among the people of the earth. No one can stop him or say to him, ‘What do you mean by doing these things?’

Dan. 4:35 NLT

God’s sovereignty is the biblical truth that God is the King and legal authority over all his creation. God reigns and nothing is a surprise to him, nothing is by chance, and nothing is beyond his purpose and workings. The fact that God is sovereign should bring us great peace: our lives are not just a series of random events and lucky breaks.

The sovereignty of God is his powerful might working his purposes in and through our circumstances, irrespective, of Satan’s wicked devices and man’s evil intentions. You and I can be thankful for the Lord by his sovereignty is working his appointment in the midst of our disappointments. My life and yours has meaning, purpose, and divine direction. The bad breaks in life when submitted to God can bring spiritual growth and intimacy with Jesus. Indeed, God is in control.

He is not a God of confusion, of discordance, of accidental, random, private courses in the execution of His will, but of determinate, regulated, prescribed action.

John Henry Newman, “Sermon 11: Order, the Witness and Instrument of Unity,” Sermons Preached on Various Occasions

I Am Not in the Hands of Men

 

[God’s] rule is everlasting, and his kingdom is eternal.

All the people of the earth are nothing compared to him.

He does as he pleases among the angels of heaven and among the people of the earth.

No one can stop him or say to him, ‘What do you mean by doing these things?’

Dan. 4:34b-35 NLT

Trusting God is a challenge even for the most mature believer when our lives are turned upside down by situations that surprise us with deep pain and stun us with their sudden brutality  The Bible encourages us that God is there in the pain, he is acting, and he is loving. Our circumstances scream that he has forgotten us and does not care, but scripture assures us that we are not in the hands of men, but God’s hand is there, there in our pain. By the Cross of Christ, we know that God has experienced our suffering. By the promises of God, we know that we are held in the palm of his hand.

For how many a soldier in a concentration camp, weak with hunger and smarting under the whip of the torturers; for how many a person huddling in the last extremity of ghastly dread in a bomb shelter; for how many on the endless gray road of a refugee trek was it not the great experience suddenly to know: I am not in the hands of men, despite everything to the contrary; another hand, a higher hand is governing in the midst of all man’s madness and canceling all the logic of my calculations and all the images of my anxious sick imagination?

I am being led to the undreamed-of shore, the harbor, the Father’s house. And always when things grow dark, suddenly that marvelous helping hand is there. If there is anything that is really bombproof, then it is this, that God is there . . . “

Helmut Thielicke, The Waiting Father, trans., Robert Doberstein (New York: Harper & Row, 1959), 36. [paragraphing mine]

HT: Ray Ortlund

Is God Really in Control?

The Sovereignty of God

I (Job) know that you (God) can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.

Job 42:2

God’s sovereignty is the biblical truth that God is the King and legal authority over all his creation. God reigns and nothing is a surprise to him, nothing is by chance, and nothing is beyond his purpose and workings. The fact that God is sovereign brings me great peace: my life is not just a series of random events and lucky breaks. My life and yours has meaning, purpose, and divine direction.  Even the bad breaks in life when submitted to God can bring spiritual growth and intimacy with God. The sovereignty of God is his powerful might working his purposes in and through our circumstances, irrespective, of Satan’s wicked devices and man’s evil intentions. You and I can be thankful for the Lord by his sovereignty is working his appointment in the midst of our disappointments. God is in control.

Exodus 4:11; Lam. 3:38; Eccles.  7:14; Gen. 45:5-8

Nothing is a surprise to God; nothing is a setback to His plans; nothing can thwart His purposes; and nothing is beyond His control. His sovereignty is absolute. Everything that happens is uniquely ordained by God. Sovereignty is a weighty thing to ascribe to the nature and character of God. Yet if He were not sovereign, He would not be God. The Bible is clear that God is in control of everything that happens.

Joni Eareckson Tada, Is God Really in Control, Joni and Friends, 1987, 1. www.joniandfriends.org [HT: Grace Gems]

God in His love always wills what is best for us. In His wisdom He always knows what is best, and in His sovereignty He has the power to bring it about.

Jerry Bridges, Trusting God: Even When Life Hurts (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 1988), 17.

By His Permission and Appointment

christ_pantocrator

God’s Permission

Does not the Most High send both calamity and good?

Lam. 3:38 NLT

Now it seems to me as if you and I are enclosed in God. An arrow comes from the enemy’s bow. A man hates me writes an anonymous letter. Someone defrauds me. Some woman sets an unkind story afloat about me. The evil travels toward me. If God liked, He could let the arrow pass this way or that. But if my God opens and permits the evil to pass through His encompassing power to my heart, by the time it has passed through God to me, it has become God’s will for me. He permits it, and that is His will for my life. I do not say that the man will escape his just doom. God will deal with him. I am not going to worry myself about him. In early days, I have taken infinite pains to avert the evil that men wished to do me, or perhaps to repay them, or to show that the evil was perfectly unwarranted. I confess that I have ceased to worry about it. If you silence one man you will start twenty more. It is ever so much better for peace of mind to accept the will of God, to accept His permission and His appointment, to look up into His face, and say, “Even so, Father.”

F. B. Meyer, The Christ-Life for Your Life (Chicago: Moody Press, no date), 121.