Friday, April 27, 2007

God: The Sovereign

In my ever increasing knowledge of who God is it becomes more clear who I am and what I was created for. In our Foundations Class at church Wednesday night we continued our discussion/lesson on foreknowledge/foreordination. There are those out there who would argue that God makes decisions because He already knew what people would do. However, it is clear that things happen only because God foreordained them to happen and that's why He knows what will happen. Everything happens because He has already decreed it. He cannot change his mind because He is Sovereign, not a limp-wristed, waffling, shaky God who changes His mind with the shifting of wind. He has created all things to glorify Him and for His good pleasure.

Romans 8:28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

He has a sovereign will and a moral will and those 2 things are very different. His sovereign will dictates what will happen and no circumstances change that, He has already decreed it. This is the will that decides every detail of our lives. His moral will is that all come to repentance though not all will and He already knows that. Repentance only comes because He grants it. His moral will, for example, is that men should not kill each other needlessly, as in abortion. We are to live righteously.

Once I grasped this truth that God is sovereign in all things my whole perspective changed on life and how I see things. It took a weight off me actually! I can rest in the fact that nothing happens to me that hasn't already gone through the fingers of my loving Father who has allowed it. Afflictions as well as joyful times are all to make me more like Him. He knew before the foundations of the world who I was and all the events that would happen in my life no matter how small. Now that is a sovereign God!! Even foreordaining the death of His Son.

Acts 2:23this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.

He sovereignly chooses some for vessels of honor and some for destruction. Who am I to question? People only come to repentance and salvation because He decreed it and He granted it. It has nothing to do with us. As a matter of fact, NOTHING has to do with us!!! It's all about God and His good pleasure and will. We should pray in all things for God's will no matter what it is. Though we are to petition God on behalf of others and intercede, He has already decreed what will happen to them. The praying is for our benefit to keep us in constant communication with God our Father. "God if it's Your will", "Father, if it glorifies You", "if it please You". These are the words we should be using to pray. Our prayers do not change what God has already foreordained but He wants to change us so that our will is in line with His.

Do you see how important it is to understand that God is sovereign? It means that you can know that everything in your life has already been marked with God's stamp of approval so all is well. Nothing takes Him by surprise. You should never be surprised by the things that happen as if God had no knowledge of it and then question why it happened. It happened because God foreordained it to happen for His glory and your good. Period!! I think that is awesome! When things happen I can confidently say, "God, how can I glorify You through this circumstance and proclaim Your greatness and majesty? Show me how I can become more like You by this affliction." Likewise, "God, thank You for this wonderful blessing You have bestowed on me. How can I use it to glorify You and proclaim Your grace and mercy?" It's all for the same purpose. To glorify our Heavenly Father who in His grace and mercy granted us repentance unto salvation!! Praise be to our Sovereign God!!!

Does this mean we should never experience human emotions when things happen? Absolutely not! It does, or should, provide comfort in knowing that God will work it for our good. We will cry, weep, mourn and be sad but not as those who have no hope. We can rest in the arms of our loving Father who will carry our burdens and safely carry us to the other side of each trial. God does have emotions and understands ours.

Rest, my dear friend in who God is and know that He is working ALL things out for His glory and your good. He cares, He knows, He heals, He works, He grieves, He grows and He understands. He alone is God, He alone is worthy, He alone knows everything and is in control, perfectly!

For Christ and His kingdom,