“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” – (Romans 8:28 ESV)
” The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.” – (Proverbs 16:9 ESV)
Over the years I have come to appreciate and meditate on the doctrine of the sovereignty of God. While God’s sovereignty is a deep and mysterious subject – it is a great comfort to me. When I meditate on the fact that political unrest, natural disasters, and atrocities of all kinds, will ultimately be used for the good of God’s children – I am comforted. God is not the author of evil. (James 1:13)
“But Joseph said to them, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” – ( Genesis 50:19-20 ESV)
God does not cause people to sin, but He obviously allows it, in fact He can use it for His ultimate glory. The Biblical narrative clearly shows that God works in seemingly hopeless situations. Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery, which God used to save the Jewish Nation from starvation, and to preserve the Messianic lineage. The murder of God’s own Son was the greatest atrocity that has ever been committed in the history of mankind, but it provided salvation to all who would believe on Jesus. God was clearly in charge of these events. The death of Jesus was predestined before the world began. God in his foreknowledge uses the evil plans of evil people to bring about his ultimate plan of restoration in the earth. To say that God is not in control of all things, elevates the devil’s authority above that which God has given him.
“Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.” – (James 1:13 ESV)
Even though God is sovereign, we are not called to be passive – we are called to pray and use the authority God has given us over the power of evil (Luke 10). As we minister in this present evil age, we clearly see two Kingdoms in conflict – but we have confidence that in the end every wrong will be made right.The Lord does not force people to do evil deeds against their wills, because men’s hearts are desperately wicked. He takes the evil intentions and actions of men, and uses them for the good of those He has chosen.
Some of the worse things that happen to us can be the very things that drive us into the arms of God. The Bible does not teach that everything that happens is good, but that it works for the good of His called ones.
You can’t trust Jesus during times of tragedy and testing unless you really know that He is good, and have experienced His love firsthand. Being born of the Spirit doesn’t insulate you from this battlefield called life. But God’s Spirit equips, comforts, and strengthens us to endure through His overcoming power until the end.