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October 29th, 2017 -Pastor Keith Cromie

God is sovereign!

Is there an easier concept to define and a harder concept to understand?

God is sovereign, meaning that God is working out his plans and purposes to his glory. But if God is sovereign, why is the world so messed up? Why do bad things happen to good people? Why is there evil? Why are children abused? Why are women exploited? And how could a good God allow his Son to be tortured?

In one sense this should bother us. After all, there are real people involved in this discussion with real pain, real hurts and real struggles. Our desire to understand can motivate deep and honest searching for understanding. Our confusion can drive us to God. If the Old Testament patriarch Job taught us anything it is that we can bring our confusion to God for a frank and honest conversation.

But on the other hand there are many things that we can define to a reasonable degree of satisfaction and yet can just as easily get lost in the mystery surrounding what we know. Do we not see this in the pursuit of the natural sciences? We certainly see this in our close family relationships. We can press the edges of our understanding and the mystery only gets bigger.

So it is with the sovereignty of God. There is the indisputable claim of Scripture that God is working out his holy plans, and there is mystery that surrounds the outworking of those plans, especially as it touches your life and mine.

So we go where angels fear to tread and determine to grow in our understanding along the way. Not every question can or will be answered, but we can learn how to live under the encouraging truth that God is sovereign. Here are some Scriptures to help stir the mind and the heart.

Is. 46:8 “Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, 9 remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, 10 declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’ 11 calling a bird of prey from the east, the man of my counsel from a far country. I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it.

Acts 2:22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know—23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.

Eph. 1:11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

 

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