Is God in Control?

Whether or not God maintains sovereign control of the world has been debated by theologians for thousands of years. While I have my opinions about the topic, I don’t feel qualified to take up that debate.

I do believe that when we rely heavily on the conviction that God is in continual control of every part of creation, we neglect some of our own responsibility. When we believe that God will preserve the parts of creation that he cares about, then we might disregard our impact on the environment. When we believe that God will supernaturally provide for those who He cares about, then we might neglect the poor, hungry, and marginalized around us (we might even say that it is God’s will for these people to suffer). When we relegate every responsibility to the sovereignty of God, we might never assume responsibility for the things that God has put in our care.

I see the need for us to care for the needy rather than waiting for God to miraculously change their situations. I see the need for us to take responsibility for the moral degradation around us rather than waiting for God to change the hearts of the influential people of our society. I see the need for us to take responsibility for our own shortcomings rather than crediting God with the arrangement of our circumstances.

Many times we are waiting for God to move, while He is waiting for us to move.

2 Responses to “Is God in Control?”

  1. I’ve started to see christians as the skin and bones of god. He gave us the body and the blood right? We took on his responsibility as the body. Maybe i’m way off but I’ve taken a much more literal approach recently to being the hands and feet of christ. Not that i’m living it. But i think it gives you a lot more of a “Live it” mentality. I am jesus to people. I am his physical representation. Hmm.. Self worth goes up a few notches for sure.i think when we take on that responsibility and start putting the beatitudes into practice.. So much falls into place 🙂

  2. Growing up I argued against God’s sovereignty until I was blue in the face. I was a Christian, but I put way to much trust in my own will than the will of the King. I gave similar arguments to Calvinist-leaning Christians that their belief in God’s complete sovereignty was nothing more than spiritual laziness. Looking back though, I see that these people with whom I was arguing against were way more active than me (and those like me) in taking care of others, in being environmentally responsible, and most importantly in preaching the gospel. They were not the lazy ones. I was.

    What I see now is that trusting in God’s sovereignty doesn’t mean neglecting the poor or failing to share the gospel because God will miraculously take care of it. Conversely, it’s realizing that God will take care of it, not through some big supernatural act, but through me. God works through Christians to change the lives of the poor; he works through Christians to preach his good news and convict the world of sin and the need to repent. No longer are these things a chore that I have to do and therefore won’t do because of laziness. Rather, they are now a privilege and joy that I get to do because God saved me for these works which he had prepared in advance for me to do (Eph 2:10). And as I do them, I realize it is not me who is doing them, but God, since I couldn’t possibly do them on my own, but must rely on the power of the Holy Spirit. God works in us and through us to will and to act (Phil 2:13). This is God’s sovereignty. This is God being in control. The King working through the obedience of his subjects, the church, to advance his kingdom throughout the earth until Jesus returns.

    Sure, there will always be those who presume upon God’s grace and use his sovereignty as an excuse for their own sins of ignoring the poor and the lost. I was once one of them. These folks would do well to read what Jesus has to say about fruit and pruning. My prayer is that God would convict them, that they would repent, and that they too would experience the joy of doing God’s work.

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