God is Sovereign
Today, there may be no more important subject than understanding the Sovereignty of God. While we watch the world seemingly fall apart around us, with people everywhere asking for answers to the constant human suffering, Christians need to respond differently. We should be able to show that there is reason for confidence and hope. God’s providence is meant to assure believers that ultimately our lives are in God’s hands. We know that God is the supreme authority over all of creation and everything that exists in the universe. While we struggle to understand our world and all that surrounds us, we can look to the almighty for answers…and for comfort.
“For I know that the Lord is great, and that our Lord is above all gods. Whatever the Lord pleases, he does, in heaven and on earth,” (Psalm 135:6).
God is absolutely sovereign over His creation and everything in it, including us. Nothing happens without His permission, and He is never surprised or unsure, since all things happen according to his plan (Ps. 33.11, Prov. 19.21). The Westminster Confession of Faith opens up in Chapter III with this, “God from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass“. Remember Satan petitioning God to afflict Job? NOTHING happens that isn’t approved by God. He foreordains all that comes to pass and this should serve as a great comfort to believers. If there is any part of creation that is outside of God’s control, then He isn’t sovereign, and what confidence can we have in His promises? As Dr. R.C. Sproul says, “If God isn’t sovereign, He isn’t God.”. We of course, know that He is sovereign, so we have every reason to walk in confidence throughout every aspect of our lives.
God is never helpless, frustrated, or left wanting in any way. Whenever God acts, He acts in a way that pleases Himself. Through Christ we now share security and freedom in this. Our lives are not random and at the mercy of the world, but in the hands of the almighty who works all things for the good of those who love Him. (Romans 8:28) We are adopted sons and daughters of Christ (Eph 1:5), sealed with a promise (Eph 1:13), and predestined to be conformed to His image (Romans 8:29). We are given every reason to be confident, not in ourselves, but in our Sovereign God, who knows every hair on our head, who guides our every step, who ordains all that happens in our lives, and is absolutely Sovereign over ALL things. We should offer hope and confidence in the midst of a fallen world, both to ourselves and to those around us, by living according to, and reflecting that truth.
“Know that the LORD, he is God! It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.” – Psalms 100:3.
The Sovereignty of God. What do we mean by this expression? We mean the supremacy of God, the kingship of God, the god-hood of God. To say that God is Sovereign is to declare that God is God. To say that God is Sovereign is to declare that He is the Most High, doing according to His will in the army of Heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth, so that none can stay His hand or say unto Him what doest Thou? (Dan. 4:35). To say that God is Sovereign is to declare that He is the Almighty, the Possessor of all power in Heaven and earth, so that none can defeat His counsels, thwart His purpose, or resist His will (Psa. 115:3). To say that God is Sovereign is to declare that He is “The Governor among the nations” (Psa. 22:28), setting up kingdoms, overthrowing empires, and determining the course of dynasties as pleaseth Him best. To say that God is Sovereign is to declare that He is the “Only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords” (1 Tim. 6:15). Such is the God of the Bible.
How different is the God of the Bible from the God of modern Christendom! The conception of Deity which prevails most widely today, even among those who profess to give heed to the Scriptures, is a miserable caricature, a blasphemous travesty of the Truth. The God of the twentieth century is a helpless, effeminate being who commands the respect of no really thoughtful man. The God of the popular mind is the creation of maudlin sentimentality. The God of many a present-day pulpit is an object of pity rather than of awe-inspiring reverence. To say that God the Father has purposed the salvation of all mankind, that God the Son died with the express intention of saving the whole human race, and that God the Holy Spirit is now seeking to win the world to Christ; when, as a matter of common observation, it is apparent that the great majority of our fellowmen are dying in sin, and passing into a hopeless eternity; is to say that God the Father is disappointed, that God the Son is dissatisfied, and that God the Holy Spirit is defeated. We have stated the issue baldly, but there is no escaping the conclusion. To argue that God is “trying His best” to save all mankind, but that the majority of men will not let Him save them, is to insist that the will of the Creator is impotent, and that the will of the creature is omnipotent. To throw the blame, as many do, upon the Devil, does not remove the difficulty, for if Satan is defeating the purpose of God, then, Satan is Almighty and God is no longer the Supreme Being.
CHAPTER II: Of God, and of the Holy Trinity.
I. There is but one only living and true God, who is infinite in being and perfection, a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts, or passions, immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty, most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute, working all things according to the counsel of his own immutable and most righteous will, for his own glory, most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin; the rewarder of them that diligently seek him; and withal most just and terrible in his judgments; hating all sin; and who will by no means clear the guilty.
II. God hath all life, glory, goodness, blessedness, in and of himself; and is alone in and unto himself all-sufficient, not standing in need of any creatures which he hath made, nor deriving any glory from them, but only manifesting his own glory in, by, unto, and upon them; he is the alone foundation of all being, of whom, through whom, and to whom, are all things; and hath most sovereign dominion over them, to do by them, for them, or upon them, whatsoever himself pleaseth. In his sight all things are open and manifest; his knowledge is infinite, infallible, and independent upon the creature; so as nothing is to him contingent or uncertain. He is most holy in all his counsels, in all his works, and in all his commands. To him is due from angels and men, and every other creature, whatsoever worship, service, or obedience he is pleased to require of them.
III. In the unity of the Godhead there be three Persons of one substance, power, and eternity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. The Father is of none, neither begotten nor proceeding; the Son is eternally begotten of the Father; the Holy Ghost eternally proceeding from the Father and the Son.