Belief in the gifts of God of grace, light and spiritual understanding should result in a quiet and patient spirit and 'to put on as the elect of God kindness, humility, meekness, being patient and forgiving one another.' Colossians 3:12
We approach this subject with faith 'as the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God' 1 Corinthians 3:19
Our thoughts are not God’s thoughts nor His ways our ways . Understanding does not come by human reasoning as this subject goes contrary to the pride of man. We need the Holy Spirit to sow the truth in our hearts.
When Jesus came into our world it was in the form of a servant. Philippians 2:6-7
In the manger He was Christ the Lord Luke 2:11
'Take no thought for tomorrow' Matthew 6:34
'Yet if a man does not provide for his own he is worse than an infidel' 1 Timothy 5:8
No sheep of Christ’s flock can perish John 10:28
Yet the Christian must make his calling & election sure 2 Peter 1:10
In each case the one balances the other.
Our study will be the sovereignty of God. His claim upon our lives. The truth neglected by man.
Who is in control of this world God or Satan? The latter is the god of this world. He was placed in charge of it. Sin is ever increasing. Christian nations have lost that which made them different. Men are afraid. Jesus is still despised & rejected by the majority who are on the broad road leading to destruction and few on the narrow path leading to life.
God seems strangely silent. Who is in control? Satan or God? How do we live? By sight or by faith? The latter only grows when it hears the Word of God Romans 10:17, to learn how God is involved in this world.
Note the the Scriptures foretold what is happening in the world today. Jude records that Jesus said there would be mockers in the last days walking according to their own lusts. It appears that God seems to have receded more & more as man chooses to go his own way. God is never taken by surprise. Ephesians 1:11 'He works all things after the counsel of His own will.'
Do those that belong to Him expect Him to act? Is He restricted only to individuals who have faith in Him?
2 Peter 1:19 'You do well that you pay attention & respond to a light in a dark place.' Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. The Day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, the heavens will be dissolved, we look for a new heaven & a new earth in which righteousness lives.
Faith endures as 'seeing Him who is invisible.' Hebrews 11:27
God is holy and angry with sin. He is righteous. Those who rebel against Him face judgement.
God is faithful He will carry out His promises. He is omnipotent, none can resist Him. Omniscient no problem too great. God given faith is needed to apprehend what God can do.
Hebrews 11:27 Faith endures as 'seeing Him who is invisible.' Faith endures disappointments, hardship, heartaches. He cannot sin or be unkind. He is love.
All is His ordering of our lives Psalm 16:9 'The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places.'
God’s ways are past finding out Romans 11:33. The man of faith sees everything from God’s point of view and accepts everything from the hand of God who keeps him in His peace.
Isaiah 55:8-9 'My thoughts are not your thoughts neither are your ways my ways says the Lord. As the heaven are above the earth so are My ways and thoughts higher than your ways and thoughts.'
The Sovereignty of God defined
1 Chronicles 29:11 'Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, glory, victory, majesty for all in heaven, the earth is Yours. In the kingdom, you are exalted above all.'
It means the supremacy, kingship of God who is God, Almighty, possesses all power none can oppose or resist His power.
God the Father has planned the salvation of man, God the Son died to save man, God the Holy Spirit seeks to win man to Christ.
The God of the Bible is irresistible, infinite. He has the right like a Potter over clay to do as He decides. He acts according to His nature.
God is sovereign in the exercise of His power, as, when, where, He wills. Dormant. In its time I the Lord will do it quickly. Pharoah power broken, people released. Same at Jericho. Only there.
David/ Goliath. Daniel/ lions. Stephen/stoned not delivered.
Deuteronomy 8:18 'Remember the Lord your God for it is he who gives you power to get wealth.'
Sovereign to exercise mercy - one man at a pool – only he made whole. John 5 unexpected!
'Grace reigns through righteousness' Romans 5:21 A gift. No boasting. God only the glory.
Isaac the child of promise. Jacob, not Esau, the blessing. Tax collectors, not Pharisees. Birth of Jesus Shepherds, foreigners.
Why? God alone decides. Whom He pleases, most unlikely, unworthy.
Sovereignty in creation Revelation 4:11 'You are worthy O Lord to receive glory, honour, power. You created all things and for Your pleasure they were & are created.'
The variety: Psalm 135:6 'What pleased the Lord that did He in heaven, & in earth, in the seas & all deep places'
Variety in heaven: angels & elect angels as He pleases. Variety of people, intellect, gifts, colour.
Some leaders, others follow.
Why? Matthew 11:26 'Good in Your sight.' Proverbs 16:4 The Lord has made all things for Himself. Isaiah 40:17 'All nations are as nothing in His Sight & counted as less than nothing.' To whom will you liken God?
The Sovereignty of God in Administration
Psalm 103:19 'The Lord has prepared His throne in the heavens & His kingdom rules over all'
The wind blows where it pleases. Hebrews 1:3 He upholds all things by the word of His power.
God governs inanimate matter: God said Let be light & There was light. God said “Let the waters be gathered to one place & let dry land appear. It was so.
Psalm He spoke & it was done. He commanded & it stood fast.
Plagues upon Egypt: darkness, water into blood, death of first born.
Moses extended his rod to heaven, The Lord sent thunder and hail - Only in Goshen no hail.
Darkness in Egypt. Light in Goshen. Red Sea parted Israel escaped. Egypt destroyed.
Jesus asleep in a boat. Do you not care about our safety? He rebuked the wind. "Peace be still"
Sun went back ten degrees on Ahaz dial. A star guided the wise men. God uses the heavens.
Psalm 147:15-18 He scatters frost, sends out his word & melts ice, wind to blow, water to flow.
Amos 4:7-10 Rain on one city, nothing on another. Worms sent to destroy crops. To cause people to return and obey the Lord. In Egypt frogs out of rivers, flies, locusts.
1 Kings 17:2-4 'I have commanded the ravens to feed you at the brook Cherith'
A dumb donkey rebuked a prophet. Long before Walt Disney! A fish swallowed Jonah. A fish gave Peter the coin he needed for the tax.
God reigns over the animal world. What of mankind? Acts 17:28 'In Him we live & move & have our being' – man owes his existence & preservation to God.
Luke 12:16-21 The Rich fool made his plans without God. God replied: You fool this night your soul will be required of you.
Proverbs 21:1 'the king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord. He turns it as He wishes'
Isaiah 14:27 'For the Lord Almighty has purposed & who shall overturn it? '
Isaiah 46:10 'My counsel shall stand & I will do all my pleasure.'
The brothers of Joseph got rid of him but God used him to save the family.
Jesus was rejected but His very rejection & resurrection is our salvation.
God controls angels & the spiritual world.
God sent an angel to destroy Jerusalem, later said it is enough, stop. 1 Chronicles 21:15,27
Acts 12:11 The Lord has sent His angel & delivered me from Herod.
Matthew 13:41 'The Son of Man shall send His angels to gather them that do iniquity.'
Matthew 24:31 'He shall send His angels to gather His elect.'
1 Kings 22:23 'The Lord has put a lying spirit in all your prophets.'
1 Samuel 16:14 'The Spirit of the Lord left Saul and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him.'
God retains control over the spiritual world. Satan unable to touch Job until allowed by God.
Jesus rejected the tests of Satan & when told to leave, the devil left Him. The devil & his angels will be cast into the lake of fire.
The Lord God reigns over inanimate matter, animals, man, angels good & evil, over Satan, over the world and nature. Not blind fate but God is ruling the world. The majority ignore Him. He calls for those He has redeemed to keep trusting Him for He will be visibly victorious and His will, will be done. His house will be full. The elect He has chosen will enjoy His company for eternity.
Look not at a world out of control, nor at nations and men who reject His existence, but will all ultimately have to give an account for the lives they have lived. No excuse acceptable.
Live according to the light you have received. Use it or lose it. Do not think about the past.
Live in the present and look forward to the future. Your relationship with the Father, the Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit is the most important item in your outlook of life. Only one life which passes so quickly – live it only with yourself in mind and you will lose out. Invest your life in helping others to come into a relationship with the only God and you will look forward to an eternity of rejoicing that will never end. Love and obey Jesus.