“Forever, O Lord, your word
is firmly fixed in the heavens.
Your faithfulness endures to all generations;
you have established the earth, and it stands fast.
By your appointment they stand this day,
for all things are your servants.”
Our God – Father, Son (Jesus Christ), and Holy Spirit – is absolutely sovereign over all that he has made. He is in control over all things and all things are under his control and his command. This is not saying that all creatures obey him, for humans have free wills, and humans can choose to obey or to disobey, but ultimately they can do nothing unless God allows it, and he has the power to stop them at any time, too.
I have been especially keenly aware of God’s sovereignty over all creatures this past year, beginning with the mice infestation we had a year ago. I got sick from the mice, breathing in their urine and feces, and the sickness was a lot like mononucleosis, which I had had before. And this was followed by my right knee going out on me and what appears to be permanent nerve damage in that right leg, though I am seeing some improvement.
Anyway, it was a difficult time with those mice, and I had to keep reminding myself that God was absolutely sovereign and in control over all things, including the mice, and that he allowed them to be there and to get me sick or it wouldn’t have happened. And he could have removed them at any time, but I think they remained in the walls or between floors in our building for at least 6 months, for I continued to smell them for that long.
Now we are dealing with cockroaches, but that is where it gets interesting. I hate cockroaches. They are nasty little creatures. But over and over again they keep appearing at opportune moments to fit right in with what I am writing for my devotions. For, symbolically speaking, cockroaches represent the spiritually and morally unclean, those who are manipulators, deceivers, opportunists, liars, untrustworthy, prideful, and hypocrites (imposters).
So, what I am realizing more and more is how these creatures are all under God’s command and he places them exactly where he wants them for his purposes, if he chooses. And it isn’t just creatures, but our circumstances, our trials, our tribulations, etc. are all under his command and control. So, it is good if we can view our circumstances in this way and then ask the Lord what he wants to teach us through them or how we are to pray concerning them and how we are to respond to them. And trust God with the results.
“If your law had not been my delight,
I would have perished in my affliction.
I will never forget your precepts,
for by them you have given me life.”
Now, this can be applied several different ways, I believe, for to perish simply means to physically die. But it also means to be dead spiritually and to die in our sins without God and to not go to heaven but to go to hell. But it can also mean to give up hope, and to let our circumstances overtake us (to succumb to them) to where we just don’t want to go on anymore, which may even result in us going back to living in sin if we are not careful.
But if the word of God is our delight, and if we are living by the Scriptures, and if God is our delight, and if we are living our lives in obedience to him in order to please him, then we should be able to endure afflictions. These afflictions can be physical in nature, such as sicknesses and viruses which can also cause more damage to the human body, as I am experiencing. Or they can be persecutions and mistreatments by other people.
I can speak from personal experience that some of the trials I have been through in my life would have been the death of me if I did not have the Lord Jesus and his word to guide me, to comfort me, to carry me through, and to teach me about the sovereignty of God so that I would learn to trust the Lord in all my circumstances, no matter how hard they may be sometimes. For, I would not be able to do what I do each day if it were not for the Lord guiding me and carrying me through it all.
The Word of God and my Savior have rescued me many times over from discouragement, from fears, from deep sorrow, and from wanting to give up, and they have strengthened me and helped me to be steadfast in spirit, and to keep moving forward, and to keep doing the will of God no matter how hard it gets sometimes and no matter how many obstacles get thrown in my way. I cannot ever live by my feelings or I will perish in my affliction. But I must walk by faith and not by sight and trust God at all times in all ways.
“I am yours; save me,
for I have sought your precepts.
The wicked lie in wait to destroy me,
but I consider your testimonies.
I have seen a limit to all perfection,
but your commandment is exceedingly broad.”
We, as followers of Jesus Christ, need to have this perspective that we belong to God, that we are his, the sheep of his pasture, and that he has placed us here in this world for a God-ordained purpose. And we need to seek God’s face regarding what purpose he has for us in this life instead of just going it on our own doing our own thing. For he has designed each of us for a very specific purpose he has in mind for us, so we need to do that.
But when we do submit to God’s purpose for our lives we need to understand that we will be hated and persecuted as Jesus was. We will have enemies. We will have people who will rise up against us. And we will have those who just won’t want anything to do with us, too, and who will reject and ignore and ostracize us because they are not comfortable being with us who are walking in fellowship with our Lord and who are doing his will.
Yet, there was only ever one man on this earth who was absolutely perfect and without sin, and that was Jesus Christ. For all of us have sinned. And we will not be made absolutely perfect until we are no longer in these flesh bodies and we are with the Lord for eternity. So, walking in fellowship with the Lord and doing his will is not a claim to sinless perfection. But lack of perfection should never be used as an excuse for deliberate habitual sin.
So, there are limits to human perfection but not to the word of God. God’s word is without error in its original form, and I believe most of the more highly acclaimed actual translations of the Scriptures into English are trustworthy. The point is that God is perfect and so his word is totally trustworthy. The words of humans, unless they are quoting directly from the Scriptures, should be tested against the Scriptures (in context).
But let me say this here. Although not one of us is sinless (perfect in all ways), as followers of Jesus Christ sin is to no longer have mastery over our lives to where we obey its lustful desires, in practice. Sin is not to be our practice, but righteousness and obedience to our Lord are to be our practice. For, if sin is our practice (habit, addiction), we will not inherit eternal life. But if we are dying to sin daily and obeying our Lord’s commands, in practice, then we have eternal life with God.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-10; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-11; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15; Eph 2:8-10]
Seek the Lord
An Original Work / July 20, 2012
Based off Isaiah 55
“Come to Me all you who thirst; come to waters.
Listen to Me, and eat what’s good today,
And your soul will delight in richest of fare.
Give ear to Me, and you will live.
I have made an eternal covenant with you.
Wash in the blood of the Lamb.”
Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him.
Let the wicked forsake his way, in truth.
Let him turn to the Lord, and he will receive mercy.
Freely, God pardons him.
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,”
declares the Lord, our God.
“My word that goes out of My mouth is truthful.
It will not return to Me unfulfilled.
My word will accomplish all that I desire,
And achieve the goal I intend.
You will go in joy and be led forth in peace.
The mountains will burst into song… before you,
And all of the trees clap their hands.”