|Volume 21 Number 10 October 2019||
You might ask, “Why is your God better than other gods?” The God of the Bible makes history make sense! The God of the Bible also makes the future make sense! The Bible says:
Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. You return man to dust and say, “Return, O children of man!” For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night. You sweep them away as with a flood; they are like a dream, like grass that is renewed in the morning: in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; in the evening it fades and withers. For we are brought to an end by your anger; by your wrath we are dismayed. You have set our iniquities before you, our secret sins in the light of your presence. For all our days pass away under your wrath; we bring our years to an end like a sigh. The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away. Who considers the power of your anger, and your wrath according to the fear of you? So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom. (Psalm 90:1-12, ESV)
A generation arises and a generation dies, but the eternal God watches over each one! While we have our 70 or 80 years here on this earth, we need to serve the Sovereign of the universe! By doing so, our future is assured and one of these days we can live eternally with Him!
Webster defines the adjective “sovereign” as “(1) above or superior to all others; chief; greatest; supreme (2) supreme in power, rank, or authority (3) of or holding the position of ruler; royal; reigning (4) independent of all others (5) excellent; outstanding – n (1): a person who possesses sovereign authority or power; specifically, a monarch or ruler.” In the days of Samuel, the nation of Israel decided it wanted a king like everybody else. So, God had Samuel repeat the following to the people of Israel. “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘I brought up Israel out of Egypt, and I delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of all the kingdoms that were oppressing you.’ But today you have rejected your God, who saves you from all your calamities and your distresses, and you have said to him, ‘Set a king over us’” (1 Samuel 10:18-19). I wonder how many of us, by our actions, have said to God, “Set someone else over us; better still, let me have my own way!”
Friends, are you fleeing from the Supreme Sovereign of the universe? The Creator of this universe is its Sovereign! As sovereign, there is nothing that God does not know; there is nothing He lacks the power to do; and He is absolutely free from limits or restraints with the exception of those restraints or limits that He would freely make for Himself.
Can you grasp the significance of being invited into the presence of such a Sovereign as this, and being permitted and even encouraged to petition this Sovereign in prayer? The apostle Paul wrote to Christians in Colosse:
We have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:9-14)
Paul marched boldly into the throne-room of the Sovereign of the universe and asked for things on behalf of the Colossian Christians. Friends, when you pray to the Sovereign of the universe, you are talking with the One Who knows everything; you are talking with the One Who has the power to change things, and Who is limited in only the ways He has chosen to be limited because of His nature.
Therefore, what should be our reaction? Bow! Believe! Behold with awe the way God works out the details of your history. “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).
Recorded in Isaiah 45 are the words of the Sovereign to a king by the name of Cyrus. He was a Persian king and the founder of a long line of Persian kings. God chose this heathen king to do His bidding. Notice Isaiah 45:1-13.
Thus says the Lord to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have grasped, to subdue nations before him and to loose the belts of kings, to open doors before him that gates may not be closed: “I will go before you and level the exalted places, I will break in pieces the doors of bronze and cut through the bars of iron, I will give you the treasures of darkness and the hoards in secret places, that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name. For the sake of my servant Jacob, and Israel my chosen, I call you by your name, I name you, though you do not know me. I am the Lord, and there is no other, besides me there is no God; I equip you, though you do not know me, that people may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the Lord, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things. Shower, O heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain down righteousness; let the earth open, that salvation and righteousness may bear fruit; let the earth cause them both to sprout; I the Lord have created it. Woe to him who strives with him who formed him, a pot among earthen pots! Does the clay say to him who forms it, “What are you making?” or “Your work has no handles”? Woe to him who says to a father, “What are you begetting?” or to a woman, “With what are you in labor?” Thus says the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, and the one who formed him: “Ask me of things to come; will you command me concerning my children and the work of my hands? I made the earth and created man on it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host. I have stirred him up in righteousness, and I will make all his ways level; he shall build my city and set my exiles free, not for price or reward,” says the Lord of hosts.
God had these words written by Isaiah almost 200 years before Cyrus was born! That’s right! Can you imagine the impact this Scripture had upon Cyrus when some Jewish exile later showed it to him? Well, Cyrus took to heart the message. He released the Jewish people from their captivity without price or reward. He sent them home with the commission to rebuild the Temple at his expense.
In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia…the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing: “Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever is among you of all his people, may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and rebuild the house of the LORD, the God of Israel—he is the God who is in Jerusalem. And let each survivor, in whatever place he sojourns, be assisted by the men of his place with silver and gold, with goods and with beasts, besides freewill offerings for the house of God that is in Jerusalem.” (Ezra 1:1-4)
Friends, the God of the Bible is the Sovereign of the universe. Shouldn’t you bow; shouldn’t you believe; shouldn’t you worship and serve this Sovereign?