For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Subject to none, influenced by none, absolutely … Michael Phillips (Jesus Alliance CEO) shares a message today with two points you need to hear. Luke 2:1-7; Matthew 2:1-6. We see unjust, uncaring or even clearly wicked people doing things that adversely affect us. God does not want us to live like this. How can we be sure? It teaches it by direct statements and by clear and sufficient implication. “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord…” I'd like to believe in God, but I just can't understand this. God encourages each one of us to exercise self-control in all things we do. The Jews asked under whose authority Jesus overturned the tables and whipped the vendors. 2. Isaiah 45: “I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.” (Isaiah 45:3), Isaiah is talking about King Cyrus, referring to him “as Jehovah’s ‘shepherd,’ the Lord’s ‘anointed,’ who was providentially appointed to facilitate the divine plan” of setting Israel free from captivity. It is very clear who is being allowed to have control. Proverbs 19:21: “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” Whatever humans anywhere in the world are planning and doing, what stands is God’s will. Do you believe that today? God did not create us to be puppets, but in Christ chose to draw us to Himself through an ultimate act of sacrificial love. - Crosswalk the Devotional - January 6, 20 Prayers to Keep God First in the New Year, When the Resolutions Fail - New Year Devotional - January 7, 32 Uplifting Quotes for When Your Spirits Are in Their Darkest Valley, 5 Things a Wife Really Needs (But Doesn’t Know How to Ask For), Why We Need to Look to God after National Calamity, 5 Things Christians Should Know about QAnon. He is the Alpha and He is the Omega and He is omniscient and omnipresent. He took control of our salvation by sending Jesus, and determines whose hearts will be softened towards Him (Ephesians 4:1). The concept of the control of God over everything is called the “sovereignty” of God. Or one where an infinitely good, infinitely wise, infinitely powerful God works everything together for the good of those who trust him and for his glory? If we are walking in fellowship with Him, then nothing can touch us unless it is allowed by God for our good. Jeremiah 10:23: “I know, O Lord, that the way of man is not in himself, that it is not in man who walks to direct his steps.”. Jesus’ disciples could not imagine any other type of display, least of all the agonized and humiliated form of their crucified Rabbi. Isaiah 59:1. Natural and Moral Evil. Genesis 50:20. Andre Maurois, a French philosopher and writer, once said, "The universe is indifferent. Romans 2:4 says, “God’s kindness is intended to turn you from your sin.” God is not an overbearing taskmaster, who angrily forces us to do things against our will. He offers us blessing and cursing, right and wrong, life and death. Not only is God in control of the world; He is also in control of history. He shows up when we mess up. His authority is safety for the vulnerable. If God exercised total control over everything we do, we could not love God because love always requires the lover to freely choose to love. God is accountable only to Himself. Thank you for perfect leadership, for your omniscient command of every situation, and for loving us while you hold all things together. Nothing will stop God from fulfilling His plans. John 2: Christ caused chaos in the temple where moneylenders and vendors were turning His Father’s “house into a market.” (John 2:16). When Jesus died on the cross, God was finally able to forgive our sins forever, and to rescue us from spiritual death (1 Cor. God wants all of us to be saved; He wants all of us to come to faith in Jesus; He wants all of us to reflect his moral precepts; He wants all of us to love one another. In other words, God has a plan, and nothing is going to derail His plan as a whole and for us individually. God Is In Control. Let’s take a look at the nature of God; He tells us through His Word that He is love, light, and all things good. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” Notice he does not say, “If you have turned again,” but “when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.”, In other words, “Yes, I’m going to give Satan permission to sift you like wheat, and I know it’s going to involve three denials. Your basis premise and assumption that He does is 100 percent wrong. So the Ninevites in effect turn on God by trusting in themselves and choosing to live corrupt and evil lives apart from God. The New Testament writers assure us that our Father does indeed have everything under control in our lives. If God exercised total control over everything we do, we could not love God because love always requires the lover to freely choose to love. Including the freedom to make wrong or stupid choices. Does God control my circumstances, or are the circumstances in my life just that—circumstances? Well … uh … yes. God Almighty possessed ultimate control over the outcome, and Joshua knew the Lord was faithful. Christians are freed from imagining we can somehow convert a person or prevent a person from coming to Christ. If God is in control of everything, why do bad things happen to us? For example, if I say my friend (who knows how to drive every kind of car) drove an electric car without instruction the first time he got into it, you wouldn’t think he knows how to only drive electric cars. Most people in the world have no experience of lasting joy in their lives. He answered “destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.” (John 2:19) Jesus was talking about His body. In other words, God even controls Satan. He is author of. God is in control. Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Joshua 1: “Have I not commanded you? Bible Study Resources - Tips, Online Bible Search, Devotions, 7 Toxic Attitudes to Let Go of This New Year, 3 Powerful Prayers for Coronavirus - For Those Sick and Those Worried, Prayers for Healing America and Turning to God, A Mathful God? Here’s what Jesus says in Luke 22:31: “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. That’s the question today from Ryan in Jacksonville, Florida: “Pastor John, I thank God for using A.W. Third, behind human acts, the biblical writers assume God. God does not rescue us from the 'facts of life.' If we get a president that is not good for the country, then God is punishing us. Did God say “Oh I understand and I’m so sorry you have to go thru this. Even when it’s hard to follow, we know from Jesus’ resurrection that obedience to the one in total authority leads to eternal security and joy. We might like to think we are ruled by human governments, but where man rules, God overrules because “ the Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all ” (Psalm 103:19), and “ God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases ” (Psalm 115:3). Proverbs 21:1 “In the Lord’s hand the king’s heart is a stream of water that he channels toward all who please him.” Joseph Benson wrote that the king’s “very inward purposes and inclinations, which seem to be most in a man’s own power, and out of the reach of all other beings; and much more his tongue, and hand, and all his outward actions [...] are in the hand of the Lord — Subject to the influence, control, and government of the great Lord of all.”. We experience the consequences of other people’s mistakes and failures. Let’s take a look at the nature of God; He tells us through His Word that He is love, light, and all things good. Instead, God forgives our sins and welcomes us into His family. The answer to that is that God is sovereign and can do … Lets say when you smoke weed or drink alcohol and your perception of reality around you changes. We all submit to something—whether to God or to desires of the flesh—but only submission to His authority frees us from slavery. Paul wrote that believers in Christ have been “predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will” (Ephesians 1:11). The psalmist says that God is not in all of the ungodly man's thoughts ( Psalm 10:4 ). Then God surprised everyone by demonstrating that He has control over sin and death, raising His Son from the grave. Everything that God does for us, he does for our own good. No one is coerced into loving God. How is “control” defined? How does he really feel about his imperfect creatures? The problem with this answer comes (and this is the question that your friend is really asking) when we consider sin and punishment. How do we know that God always controls everything? God’s sovereign will governs all daily events. This means the Bible isn’t simply an instruction manual with rules you must follow. - Things never get beyond the control or the reach of God. This may sound confusing sorry, but I hear people tell me that God let's us do whatever we want with our lives because we aren't like robots. The temple was destroyed at the cross and raised again three days later. But does that mean God controls all things all the time? Our lives are in His hand. God remains in control of everything. He modeled loving submission to the Father. He raises it with a rhetorical question that can’t be explained any other way. Let’s look at what God did when Elijah got all depressed. They do so because they freely choose to sin. God is in control. 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