A glorious and heart warming truth
Over the next few blogs we are going to think about a glorious, heart warming truth. We are going to be thinking about the sovereignty of God. The reason why we’re looking at this now is because soon in Hebrews we are going to open a can of worms! That can is this: Can we lose our salvation? This question of our assurance and whether or not we can lose our salvation is akin to asking, “Is God sovereign over our salvation?” So over the next few weeks we’re gong to have a look at the sovereignty of God generally and then the sovereignty of God particularly as it relates to our salvation. I’m not going to be able to deal with this issue in full during the sermons and so I intend to cheat and use the blogs to help us out. I pray the sovereignty of God will be a glorious, heart warming truth for you too.
I love that God is sovereign. I love that nothing takes him by surprise. I love that He is before all things and so never reacts to anything. I love that he is always proactive. I love that he knows what I need before I ask for it. I love that he knows my thoughts and knows what I need before I even ask. I love that he is totally in charge and in control. Nothing takes him by surprise and nothing will ever thwart his purposes.
This is truly wonderful news. Imagine if God was 1% sovereign, or 80% sovereign or 99% sovereign. Imagine that he was only partly in control of what’s going on in our world, his plans for his people and his plans for the world. We would all be in serious trouble. We would be in terrible trouble with no assurance, no real comfort and no hope. I truly love that God is sovereign.
God’s sovereignty is tied to his Godness. Without his Sovereignty, God is not God. God’s sovereignty does not mean that he can do anything though. God cannot do anything that is contrary to his perfect character. He cannot do anything evil or that will thwart his purposes. There is wonderful comfort in this. It means that God is sovereign over the COVID crisis. He is sovereign over evil in the world, even if he cannot and will not ever be the source of evil. I love Genesis 50:20 which helps us understand this tension, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”
I remember going for a bush walk with my family a few years ago. There was a particular point in the walk where the grass got taller that our Jo! She couldn’t see where she was going and it was impossible to see her! She had simply stopped walking. I approached her and held her hand and she was happy to keep pressing on. Why? Because she could see? No! The grass was still taller than her. She was happy to keep walking because she trusted the one who could see – me! We can’t often see the path as God’s people but we hold the hand of the one who can see, who is sovereign and good – and so we press on.
God’s sovereignty poses a significant challenge for us though. If God is good and sovereign then how can he let bad things happen to good people? Boy! That’s a tough one. The only way I can get my head around this is by looking at his Son, the Lord Jesus dying on the cross. Why does God in his sovereignty allow bad things happen to Jesus – the ultimate good person? He died on the cross so that his people could be forgive. Jesus’ death was good. That’s why we call Easter Friday, Good Friday. How can Easter Friday be good? Because in the death of Christ we see the death of death itself. In the death of Christ we can have our sins paid for. Good Friday is indeed good. Jesus is a final fulfilment of Genesis 50:20, “as for you, you meant evil against me (to kill me on a cross), but God meant it for good, to bring about that many people should be kept alive (ransomed, restored, healed and forgiven), as they are today”. We often cannot see the good that God is bringing about by terrible events. Sometimes we can see it (like the death of Christ) but often we can’t.
The martyrs who have paid the ultimate price for their faith in Christ appeal to the sovereignty of God when they cry out, “‘O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood those who dwell on the earth?’ Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longe, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were killed as they themselves has been.” (Rev 6:10) God knows there’ll be more martyrs! Those might include you. The might include me, who knows! God knows and he is sovereign. I don’t know why he would allow this but I trust that evil people mean evil and God in his sovereign goodness uses evil for good. Praise Him!
Let’s be people who walk through the long grass – not by sight but by faith, trusting the One who can see and will fulfil his purposes for us.
“To the only God, our Saviour, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen” – Jude 25
A glorious and heart warming truth