One of the many facts the testimony of Scripture attests to is the sovereignty of God. God’s sovereignty is manifest in His governing activity and His providential dealings with man. The fact that God providentially interacts with His creation results primarily in two things. First, history has purpose and meaning. In all other non-theistic world religions, history has no meaning. It is seen either as an endless cycle, or perfectionist vortex, or as a meaningless drone of nothingness with no beginning or ending. When God is seen as sovereign, time is part of His creation. As part of creation separate and distinct from God, it cannot be eternal as He is – it must have a beginning and ending. History can then be seen as having a purpose. It is “His story.” History teaches us who God is, who man is, the nature of sin, and the interaction between God and man. Second, God’s governing activity shows us that God is in control. As creator, God is acknowledged as the one who established things the way they originally were prior to the curse. As sustainer, God is the one who perpetually controls the actions of His creation. Solely based upon natural revelation, early philosophers termed this governing activity as the “unmoved mover.” Even our finite minds could grasp the concept of an ethereal gearbox in which an unmoved mover cranked on one end to elicit a robotic response on the other. What our minds cannot comprehend, however, is the role man’s free will and responsibility play. That is why God’s governing activity is seen as sovereignty rather than fatalism.
God accomplishes His sovereign governing activity either by performing supernatural acts or by using the laws and forces of nature. The Bible records many instances of God displaying His sovereignty supernaturally. At times, He has stepped out of the normal course of events to do an act that would otherwise be inexplicable. For example, when Jesus turned the water into wine at the wedding feast, there could be no logical explanation other than the performance of a miracle. It is physically impossible for H2O to transform into fermented fruit juice. Likewise, it is physically impossible for life to return to a body that has lain dead, moldering in the grave for three days. Not only does God accomplish His sovereign governing activity using supernatural acts, He uses laws and forces of nature. Examples include the plagues of locusts, flies, and frogs brought upon Pharaoh and the Egyptians prior to the Israelite Exodus. Another example is God’s destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. It is possible God used some type of volcanic eruption or other seismic activity as the means to accomplish His prescribed ends.
The extent of God’s sovereign governing activity is limitless. God is sovereign over all creation. As such, there is nothing beyond God’s control. Included in God’s span of control are the good and evil acts of individuals. It is within His prerogative to restrain man from committing sin if He so desires. He also permits sin to occur. Since God is not the author of sin, and sin is an existential verity, if God is omnipotent, He must allow His creatures the freedom to sin. Though He doesn’t cause sin, He uses its results to accomplish His foreordained will and determines the result of sinful actions. Finally, He determines boundaries and sets limits to sin and sinful behavior.
Understanding the fact that God is sovereignly governing His creation is the only true ground for hope. The only hope of the humanist is progressivism, but progressivism is irrational because it is contrary to the testimony of history. Conversely, the testimony of Scripture heralds the faithfulness of God and the obvious comfort provided by His sovereignty. True peace results in the divinely bequeathed comprehension that God is in control of everything and will work all things together for good to them that love Him and are the called according to His purpose.
The New NAMB: Part 5
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