God's Sovereign Control
I trust you are doing well and looking forward to Sunday.
Few things are more controversial among Christians than the sovereignty of God.
The issue is simply this: Is God truly sovereign (in control and supreme) over everything, including calamity, natural disasters, death, and demons, or is his sovereign control restricted to those things we typically regard as good, such as material blessing, family welfare, personal salvation, and good health?
Any fair minded Christian, who reads the Bible objectively will soon discover that the Scriptures teach that God is in control of nature (Psalms 104; 147:8-9, 14-18; 148:1-12), seemingly random acts (Proverbs 16:33), the affairs of our daily lives and the plans we make for each day (Proverbs 20:24; 19:21; James 4:13-15), life and death (Deuteronomy 32:39; 1 Samuel 12:6, Psalm 139:16), the disabilities with which some are born (Exodus 4:11), the unjust death of His Son (Acts 2:23; 4:27-28; Isaiah 53:10), the choices we make as humans (Proverbs 21:1; Genesis 20:6), the suffering of His people (Ezra 1:1; Deut. 2:30; Joshua 11:20; 2 Chron. 13:14-16; Acts 4:27-28; 2 Cor. 8:16-17; Rev. 17:17), whether a woman becomes pregnant (Genesis 16:2; 29:31; 1 Sam. 1:5), and the animal kingdom (2 Kings 17:25; Daniel 6:22).
This sovereign control of events is demonstrated in the life of one of my heroes Joni Eareckson Tada. Joni who is now 71 years old was left almost completely paralyzed from a diving accident when she was a teenager. In an interview, a few years back, in World magazine, Joni revealed something that is both sweet and a bit strange that illustrates divine providence.
The day before the incident Joni had gone to the drugstore to purchase a bottle of Nice ‘n Easy midnight summer blonde to lighten her hair color. She then explains: “Had my hair not been shockingly blonde, my sister Cathy would never have seen me face down in the water. She told me later on, ‘Joni, you were a mousy blonde and that water was dark and murky. Only because of the peroxided hair did I even see you.’ God sometimes uses the incidental choices we make to change our lives.”
One final observation is in order. Although God’s sovereignty is pervasive, that does not mean we will always be able to discern his purposes in the many events of life or why he has ordained things in his secret, decretive will that run contrary to what he has made known in his moral or perceptive will. If embracing this tension, this mystery, is offensive to you, I doubt that you will find much comfort in knowing that God is sovereign. But he is. Do I believe this because I can explain it? Do I believe it because it is to my mind no longer a mystery? No. I believe it because this is what I see taught throughout Scripture.
See you this Sunday in person or online.
In the light of His glory and grace,