Monday, July 25, 2016

Is God Still In Control?

I would like to share with you a very small portion of an email I received last week as a critique of my upcoming book.  From the six-page letter, it's safe to say that the book was not what the reader expected, and therefore, he didn't like or appreciate much of what I had to say.  His comments also helped me to understand that we have quite a different stand when it comes to doctrinal issues.  I could go into so many things right here, but I won't.  I want to focus on one statement that nearly blew me away.  Are you ready?

"God may have all rule and authority -- that doesn't mean He's in total control -- remember He gave that to man."

Say what?  God gave man a choice, but that is not to say that He surrendered control to mankind.  Can you imagine the horror?  It's bad enough that man has a choice and has created such havoc with that choice, but can you imagine if, because of that, things were out of God's hands?  How could we possibly obey His command, "Do not fear"?  I would fear.  I'd be afraid of the world spinning out of control. I'd fear the future, the unknown.  And I'm not sure that I wouldn't come to resent God for taking His hands off the situation and allowing chaos to reign.

I know that we live in a wicked world, and sometimes it does seem like things are spinning out of control.  There are days when it feels like God has taken His hands off the situation and said, "Okay, I've given you control.  Do the best you can with it."  But the fact is that God is always in control.  He knows what's going on and even though we don't understand it, the events of today are part of His plan.  He is not sitting up in Heaven, biting His fingernails and muttering, "Oh, my poor children.  I wish I could help them, but it's just not my place since I've given them free will."  That's ridiculous!

To me, the saddest part is that I don't know how anyone who believes this nonsense could have any peace in their lives.  How could you sleep at night?  How could you face life's trials and valleys if you felt that God doesn't have total control of what's happening?  I can't imagine such a life, and I'm glad I don't have to.  The Bible makes it clear that God is in complete control of EVERYTHING!

I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things. - Isaiah 45:5-7

But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. - Matthew 19:26

But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee: Or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee. Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the Lord hath wrought this? In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind. - Job 12:7-10

For the kingdom is the Lord's: and he is the governor among the nations. - Psalm 22:28

But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. - Psalm 115:3

Thine, O Lord is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O Lord, and thou art exalted as head above all. - I Chronicles 29:11

Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me? - Jeremiah 32:27

I could go on and on, but for the sake of time and space, I won't.  The point is that God is still in control.  Nothing takes Him by surprise.  Nothing happens without His knowledge and allowance.  He is God! Does that mean we understand His workings?  No.  Do we always agree with His methods?  Not really.  But does that mean things are out of His control?  Nope.  Psalm 115:3 (above) made that clear--God does what He pleases.  He knows how this whole thing plays out, and no one can thwart His perfect plan, whether they have free will or not.  And with that knowledge, I can rest secure and live in peace.  God has it all under control!

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