When the topic of God’s sovereignty comes up, one can feel a seismic shift occur in the landscape. There are few biblical doctrines as controversial as this one. Honestly, I can think of three that equal it, but I’m not focusing on those in this post. For the record, I will be scratching the surface on the doctrine of God’s sovereignty. Throughout church history, there have been far better teachers and writers of this great doctrine than the author of this post. Here are some names from the past and present: St. Augustine, Martin Luther, John Calvin, George Whitefield, Charles Spurgeon, John Piper, Mike Bickle, and R.C. Sproul. I direct my readers to those men and their works in order to really plumb the depths of this rich and profound doctrine of God’s sovereignty.
My reason for skating across the surface of God’s sovereignty is simply due to coming across the following verse during my devotional time: “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good” (Proverbs 15:3, ESV). After reading King Solomon’s words, I just sat there for several minutes pondering the implication of that verse for my own life and for all those who have lived and died. The clock reads 3:03 in the afternoon, and I am still unable to shake off Solomon’s words in Proverbs 15:3. When I read the news headlines whether online, television, print, or radio, this verse offers both encouragement and bewilderment. It is so good that God sees all, yet it baffles me in light of what transpires in this world.
The sex trafficking and pornography industries generate billions of dollars for those who benefit directly from its “services.” Those two industries destroy the lives of boys and girls on a daily basis. When I have read through the website for Saving Innocence (http://www.savinginnocence.org/), the untold stories are even more humbling and astounding with respect to the sex trafficking industry. The city that I call home, Los Angeles, contributes quite a bit to it, too. I am always shocked at how deep and pervasive the sex trafficking industry is throughout LA, our nation, and the world. The fact that I said I am shocked even shocks me. Have I been living underneath a rock?
At the midway point of this week, there have been two campus shootings: one at Purdue University in Indiana and the other at Lone Star College in Texas. Fear, betrayal, and death engulf both places instead of safety, trust, and life. The cry of an Old Testament prophet rings in my heart: “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you ‘Violence!’ and you will not save” (Habakkuk 1:2, ESV)? One of the amazing things about Habakkuk’s cry is that the Lord hears and answers him. When Habakkuk records the vision at the Lord’s direction, the prophet realizes the gravity of it. The overwhelming greatness of his Lord and the impending judgment upon the wicked consume his closing words (Habakkuk 3:2, 16, ESV).
Those words in Habakkuk remind me of similar ones written by a New Testament author: ““And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:13, ESV). I find this verse in Hebrews quite sobering; however, part of me will not presume to think that those who suffer the horrors of a campus shooting or sex trafficking will be comforted by them. Some will embrace them, but others may fight against them. There is room in the Father’s heart for the variation of his children’s responses. My encouragement is to cry out to the Lord for justice like Habakkuk. Rest on the truths bubbling underneath Proverbs 15:3 and Hebrews 4:13. In fact, the latter verse encourages God’s people because they long for the showing of his justice. The writer of Hebrews reminds us that wrongs will be set right. God will reward his people.
Until the Messiah returns, let us embrace the truth of God’s sovereignty. This is truly a divine and infinite attribute that remains totally foreign to the human experience. Reason will bring us only so far in our understanding of God’s sovereignty. It is by faith alone that God’s people can apprehend his sovereignty in addition to experiencing it. This is a big topic, a big doctrine, and an even bigger God. We must believe that he is…