IMPORTANT UPDATE FOR THIS WEEKEND

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God is Sovereign Over the Heart of the King

heart-of-the-king

 

One of the great truths that bring comfort during this time is the doctrine of God's sovereignty over all things. C.H. Spurgeon wrote, "There is no attribute of God more comforting to his children than the doctrine of Divine Sovereignty. Under the most adverse circumstances, in the most severe troubles; they believe that Sovereignty hath ordained their afflictions, that Sovereignty overrules them, and that Sovereignty will sanctify them all." The Bible declares that God rules with absolute authority over all of His creation.  Daniel 4:35 says, "for his dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom endures from generation to generation; all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand or say to him, 'what have you done?'"

Many Christians struggle with the decisions of their governmental authorities. Yet Scripture declares that God is sovereign over the hearts of kings and rulers.  Proverbs 21:1 says, "The king's heart is a stream of water in the hand of the LORD; he turns it wherever it will." Proverbs 19:21 says this: "Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand." Even when fallible human rulers make wrong or misguided decisions, the LORD is sovereign over those decisions and uses them to accomplish His good and perfect purposes. Proverbs 16:4 teaches, "The LORD has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble." Consider that when evil rulers sentenced the Son of God to execution, God used their evil as part of His sovereign plan to accomplish salvation for the world (Acts 2:23-24).

I am a citizen of the United States and I reside in Southern California. That means that I submit to a President who is a Republican and a Governor who is a Democrat. Yet I am assured that God's sovereignty is no respecter of political parties. Romans 13:1 teaches me that "there is no authority except from God and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment." 1 Timothy 2:1-2 exhorts me to pray "for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way." The Christian's prayers are not to be limited to those who are of a certain political party. Ultimately the Christian’s submission is not to fallible authorities; it is a submission to the LORD who rules over every human authority.

In this highly-charged political environment, Christians are to model the virtues of Titus 3:1-2: "Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people." 2 Timothy 2:24 teaches us that "the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness." Christians are to be a model of living a quiet life (2 Thessalonians 3:12) and are to be known for their fervent prayers on behalf of governmental leaders (1 Timothy 2:1-2). Spurgeon said, "it is God upon the throne that we love to preach. It is God upon the throne whom we trust.” Beloved, do not grumble against human kings. Place your trust in the LORD who rules over the king’s heart and who turns that heart wherever He pleases.