Here at Preparing the Bride, I’m telling GOD’S STORY. Presumptuous?! Not when simply looking at scripture, because scripture is the unfolding of God’s story to us who read it.
How do we prepare as the Bride of Christ? We learn GOD’s Story. Piece by piece, and peace by peace, we learn to walk as He has walked.
GOD’S STORY Part 8 Sovereignty of GOD
GOD is Sovereign. Personally, I have no doubt about the Sovereignty of GOD… But how is it, when GOD is sovereign, that sometimes His will does not seem to come to pass? Is it correct to think His will does not always reign?
Recently in the UK a new prime minister gained the title but after 6 weeks, she was forced to resign. The day she came into office the stained glass window in Westminster Hall, which is tidal, was completely alight. It was extraordinary and a rare — perhaps even a never before — event. To my mind and my prayer partners’ at the time, this was a marker for the LORD’s endorsement to her office. So why then did she not remain in office?
GOD does not interfere
I think the LORD observes and is grieved by some of the choices mankind makes. But He doesn’t interfere. He gave a gift of a particular leader as our Prime Minister in this example, who was then rejected by some powerful forces in media and banking, and she was forced out.
I believe the LORD will continue to observe us — all of us all over the world — until He cannot allow the corruption of humanity to grow any deeper. Then the Restrainer, the presence of GOD through Holy Spirit, will be removed… and Jesus will return.
GOD’s course of Action is long-term
2 Thessalonians 2:7-12 says,
“For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming. The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”
This is a reflection of Romans 1 as well, which explains that we are born knowing right from wrong and the truth of the Creator.
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.”
GOD takes the long view and in doing so, He gives mankind opportunity to discover the Creator and to reconnect with Him. He gives us the opportunity to receive salvation, individually and nationally. He restrains evil. This is His ultimate will. But He gives us the choice to receive or to reject.
The Restrainer — Holy Spirit and His children, Believers who carry Him within — He holds the enemy and total depravity at bay, giving each persona and each nation the opportunity to embrace the Truth.
Depravity and its reach
We see the evidence of the depraved mind more and more these days in the West, as we ignore common sense and the laws of science, embracing the fancy of individualisation. Evil is not yet fully developed in all its fullness. Even though the world is becoming darker and darker, in GOD’s sovereignty, He holds Satan at bay.
But when the Restrainer is removed from this earth, what then? I believe this is to be marked by our rapture to Heaven, followed by the earth becoming consumed by depravity…. I shudder!
Let’s not linger on the thought of a dark world without any goodness, kindness, righteousness whatsoever.
The LORD’s grief
All the earth’s depravity grieves the LORD! He knows what will come to pass inevitably, but He holds off for as long as possible, for as many as possible to have every opportunity to see the light of Christ, and to receive Him, before His removal of His protection and the ultimate return and judgment of Jesus upon those who have rejected salvation.
What must is be like for the Father who observes?
In my mind’s eye, I can imagine our LORD, Abba Father, who observes our mistakes and waits for us to “knock” (Revelation 3:20) so that He can enter into our lives.
I can envisage a Father who looks upon His children, wanting to enter into their activities and waiting to be invited. A huge embrace is available to those who call upon Him.
For those who do not call upon this Father, He prompts them through bringing others into their lives; He gently steers and offers provision, but He does not force anyone to drink the water He offers.
Eventually, time and opportunity will run out….
The End as we know the Earth
The earth may cease but GOD’s love will never cease. The heavens may fall, but GOD’s power will never decline. The enemy may rise, but GOD will never be defeated. The time may seem short, but His arm extends into infinity.
GOD’s sovereignty may not reveal itself as we would expect, or ask, but it never fails. By faith and through a glance at History, we can trace His eye, His hand, His will. His word reminds us of His promises and on these we can depend, because He is all-powerful.
In Jesus’ name, may we recall and reclaim that which He has already declared in His word.
“No weapon formed against us will prosper and every tongue that rises against us in judgment will fail.” (text) Ultimately, the end from beginning has been ordained and His will will succeed. Amen.
He is sovereign. Let us have no doubt of that.