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All Things Were Created Through Him and for Him
God’s Sovereignty over Sin
First, on a porch in Asheville, North Carolina, I was reading during the last half of July the Old Testament book of 2 Chronicles. As in every year when I get to this portion of Scripture, I am hit between the eyes by the repeated stories of fateful human sins under the sovereign control of God. For example,
Rehoboam rejected the wisdom of the old men and said to the people: “My father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with scorpions.” Then the inspired writer says, “The king did not listen to the people, for it was a turn of affairs brought about by God that the Lord might fulfill his word” (2 Chronicles 10:15).
Then king Ahab is enticed by false prophets to fight against the Syrians, and Micaiah, the true prophet of the Lord, says, “Now therefore behold, the Lord has put a lying spirit in the mouth of these your prophets. The Lord has declared disaster concerning you” (2 Chronicles 18:22).
Then Joash, King of Israel, gave wise counsel to Amaziah, king of Judah, not to go out to battle against his own people. But Amaziah refused to listen, and the inspired writer says, “But Amaziah would not listen, for it was of God, in order that he might give them into the hand of their enemies, because they had sought the gods of Edom” (2 Chronicles 25:20).
Why does God think this is good for us to know this? Why does God tell us repeatedly in the Bible that, in some unfathomable way, he governs the sinful acts of men without himself ever sinning or doing anything evil or unholy? That’s the first impulse that gave rise to this series. God wants us to know this and there are reasons.
The second impulse behind this series is that whatever month of the year you choose, heart-rending calamities fill the news from coast to coast and around the world. In Newark, New Jersey, the murder rate is up fifty percent since 1998, and a week ago an execution-style murder killed four teenagers. In Utah, six miners have been trapped 1,800 feet underground since Monday with no signs of life. And in the heartland of Minnesota, day by day the full extent of the collapse of the 35W bridge grows. And while we groan over our losses here, on the other side of the world, scarcely in the news, twenty million people have been displaced in the last two weeks in India, Bangladesh, and Nepal from the worst flooding in years. Does any of this have anything to do with the risen Jesus Christ who said, “All authority in heaven and earth belongs to me” (Matthew 28:18)? That is the second impulse that gave rise to this series..." from the sermon : All Things Were Created Through Him and for Him