Behold Your God: A Plea to Look to the Sovereign God

by | Dec 1, 2020 | The Gospel and the Christian Life, Featured

Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the Prince of Preachers, once said that, “the Sovereignty of God is the pillow upon which the child of God rests his head at night, giving perfect peace.”[1] To know that God is completely in control of all things is the greatest comfort for the Christian. In these changing and uncertain times, we have an unchangeable and eternal refuge for our souls, the Lord Jesus Christ. Now, if we are completely honest, this season has brought about much weariness to the soul. We have been pressed and tried on every side. Where do we look to? My friend, by faith, look to the Sovereign Ruler of the skies!

Now, we know the doctrine of God’s providence theoretically in our heads, but has this doctrine hit our hearts? Has it moved from the heart to your hands? Has it influenced how you live as a Christian in this age? I would suggest to you that “COVID-19” has giving us a practical lesson in the school of God’s providence. All you need to do is turn on the news or scroll through social media, and suddenly, our own hearts are filled with fear and anxiety. In these changing and uncertain times, find your souls rest in the unchanging and eternal God. Step back for a moment and fill your soul with the balm of God’s providence.

One aspect of God’s providence is in His government. In simple terms, the government of God means that He is Lord and King over all creation. He providentially rules and directs all things in order that they accomplish His purposes.[2] Take heart; God is guiding all things in creation, to the glory of His name.[3] The psalmist tells us that “Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases” (Ps. 115:3). The New Testament also shows that God “works all things according to the counsel of his will” (Eph. 1:11). In Isaiah 55:11, we are told that God’s Word shall never return to Him void, “but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.” Whatever God has decreed, it will always comes to pass (Ps. 103:19; Dn. 4:35; Rom. 8:28, 11:36; Phil. 2:10-11).

Additionally, God is actively involved in upholding all things He has created. In the book of Hebrews, we read that the Lord Jesus “upholds the universe by the word of his power” (Heb. 1:3). Moreover, He not only upholds all things, but sustains all things. It is seen that Christ “is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Col. 1:17). Thus, if God were to “cease from the activity of sustaining all things in the universe, then all except the triune God would instantly cease to exist.”[4] Ulrich Zwingli said the following: “Providence is the enduring and unchangeable rule over and direction of all things in the universe… [God] freely supplies all with all things.”[5] In the Institutes of the Christian Religion, John Calvin asserted: “He [God] is also everlasting Governor and Preserver… He sustains, nourishes, and cares for, everything he has made, even to the least sparrow… God so attends to the regulation of individual events, and they all so proceed from his set plan, that nothing takes place by chance.”[6]

Now, step back, and take a deep breath. God’s providence is not some abstract or theoretical concept that is to be looked at from afar. Rather, the providence of God is a doctrine that must be applied to the Christian life. Understanding God’s sovereignty will promote godly fear, righteous living, and lowly submission before God, causing us to delight in his will.[7] How can this doctrine encourage us today?

Thomas Watson wrote, “All the various dealings of God with his children do by a special providence turn to their Good.”[8] Thomas Boston said the following: “whatever is crooked in life was made so by God and therefore must be received in submission to God … There is not any thing whatsoever befalls us without his over-ruling hand.”[9] As we suffer, all that we see are “disjointed wheels and scattered pins of a watch,” but in eternity, the entire picture of God’s all-wise plan will be seen.[10]

For the Christian, no suffering is in vain. It all leads to their eternal good. Glory awaits! Whatever we face in this lifetime, we can know that these “light momentary affliction[s] [are] preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison” (2 Cor. 4:17). We know that God is working out all things according to the counsel of His will (Eph. 1:11). Take heart, dear Christian! Cast yourself upon the God of grace. Behold his saving grace! Treasure that grace! Glory in that grace! Proclaim that grace! Oh, may the Lamb who was slain receive the full reward of His sufferings.

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm

Deep in unsearchable mines
Of never-failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs
And works His sovereign will

And ye fearful saints, fresh courage take
The clouds you so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings, yeah, in blessings
And in blessings on your head
On your head

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense
But trust Him for His grace
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face

His purposes will ripen fast
Unfolding every hour
The bud may have a bitter taste
But sweet will be the flower

And ye fearful saints, fresh courage take
The clouds you so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings, yeah, and in blessings, yeah
And In blessings on your head
And on your head
On your head
On your head

Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan His work in vain
For God is His own interpreter
And He will make it plain.

                [1] David, Qaoud. “Charles Spurgeon on The Sweet Sovereignty of God,” Gospel Relevance (2015). http:// gospelrelevance.com/2015/06/22/charles-spurgeon-on-the-sovereignty-of-god/

                [2] Wayne, Grudem. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, 331.

                [3] Louis, Berkhof. Systematic Theology. 1958. Reprint, 175.

                [4] Wayne, Grudem. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine, 316.

                [5] Joel R., Beeke and Mark Jones. A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life, 162.

                [6] John, Calvin. Institutes of the Christian Religion. (Massachusetts: Hendrickson, 2008), 114.

                [7] A. W., Pink. The Sovereignty of God. 1928. Reprint., 123.

                [8] Joel R., Beeke and Mark Jones. A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life, 173.

                [9] Ibid, 172.

                [10] Ibid, 165.

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