It’s OK to question God but not to doubt Him.
Go ahead, ask Him something you find difficult to fathom.
Nothing stumps God or is beyond Him.
And, most assuredly, God can explain — the problem is, how much can we understand? Take this analogy: an expert in quantum physics might unravel a problem, but would the listener have the wherewithal to comprehend the concepts?
Recall Isaiah 55:8-9 — "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."
There is more to unpack from these two verses, but suffice for now to celebrate the fact that we can learn of His thoughts and embrace His ways. A start can be made. As our finite minds begin to contemplate God’s thoughts and His ways, we sense that though they are too marvellous for us! That’s what our minds are made for (besides passing exams and earning an income!) — to think and love like Him.
Dennis Cocks contributes an insight: that only God has all wisdom — “The Bible says that even the foolishness of God in man’s eyes is wiser than man: ‘Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.’ (1 Cor. 1:25) ‘So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.’ (Ps 90:12) ‘If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.’ (James 1:5).”
So we can obtain a certain amount of wisdom from God, but to think that we are as wise as God would be utter foolishness.
By definition, God is sovereign. It cannot be otherwise. That would defy logic and sense.
If He were subject to another, then He could not be God. But He is not. He reigns supreme. He does as He wishes, in accordance with His perfect wisdom and good pleasure.
And we really like it that way. There is none better. God sits on the throne.
There was an interesting moment in history when Nelson Mandela had an audience with Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom. It appeared that he flouted royal custom addressing her by her first name. His defence? “But she called me Nelson!” Graciousness from both parties won the day. Clearly there were limits to a human sovereign.
God has no equal. God is over all. He outranks everyone and everything. He is paramount and supreme. Steven Curtis Chapman entitled one of his songs this way: “God is God. I am not”. Obvious but worth repeating.
“There are no limits to God’s rule. This is part of what it means to be God. He is sovereign over the whole world, and everything that happens in it. He is never helpless, never frustrated, never at a loss. And in Christ, God’s awesome, sovereign providence is the place we feel most reverent, most secure, most free.
God Is Sovereign over the Universe. Whenever God acts, He acts in a way that pleases Him. God is never constrained to do a thing that He despises. He is never backed into a corner where His only recourse is to do something He hates to do. He does whatever He pleases.” (from Desiring God, by John Piper)
And because He is sovereign …
… We pray. We have our requests and we make them known to Him. But always seeking to align them with His will; that they may come to pass as He wishes;
… We evangelise. Predestination does not change the Great Commission to go and make disciples. We are His credentialed ambassadors and reconcilers.
… We trust. Increasingly, when the way is clear and through pain and suffering. Drawing closer to Him – it’s best to trust Him who knows what’s best.
Our God reigns. And He invites us to reign with Him. (2 Tim 2:12) Imagine that!
Dr Andrew Goh is the editor of Impact magazine.
VOL. 44 NO. 6 of IMPACT Magazine
UNDERSTANDING THE SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD
... Insights and implications for daily lives
SEEING GOD'S SOVEREIGNTY MORE CLEARLY
... The clarifying effects of COVID-19
LET IT BE
... Greater than choice or freedom
THE MAN WHO DARED TO QUESTION GOD
... Was all forgiven?
SUPREME POWER AND AUTHORITY
- The Impact Panel responds -
THERE IS POWER IN THE BLOOD
... News of great joy in a time of uncertainty