Summary: Do you ever look at the things that happen in your life and the things that are going on the world around us and feel like everything is out of control? Regardless how chaotic things may appear understand that God is on His throne and He is in control.
God Is In Control
Do you ever look at the things that happen in your life and the things that are going on the world around us and feel like everything is out of control? Questions arise. Why do things happen the way they do? Why do bad things happen to good people? Is everything just spinning out of control? Regardless how chaotic things may appear in the world or in your life understand that God is on His throne and God is in control.
I. All things are under God's Control.
A. God represents Himself in Scripture as the absolute Sovereign of His universe. God is in absolute control of all things, the world we live in, all nature, all governments, as well as your life and mine.
B. Psalm 24:1 "The earth is the LORD's and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein."
C. In Isaiah 45 we see a focus on the sovereignty of God as He overrides and overrules. God is sovereignly working out his purpose in all of history and in our personal history to effect His perfect plan.
D. Isaiah 45:1-3 "Thus says the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have held, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates (double doors); and the gates shall not be shut; I will go before you, and make the crooked places straight: I will break in pieces the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron: and I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that you may know that I, the LORD, which call you by your name, am the God of Israel."
E. More than 150 years before Cyrus was born the Lord announces by name the deliverer that He would use to free the Israeli Babylonian exiles. In this remarkable prophecy God speaks of holding Cyrus's hand enabling him to subdue many nations including the Syrians, Assyrians, Arabians, Cappodcians, Phrygians, the Lydians, Carians, Phoenicians, the Bactrians, Indians and Babylonians. The ancient Greek historian Herodotus said that Cyrus vanquished whatsoever country he invaded.
F. The armies of the Medes and Persians, under Cyrus, conquered the city of Babylon in a remarkable raid described in Daniel 5. According Herodotus, while King Belshazzar of Babylon held a reckless party, Cyrus conquered the city by diverting the flow of the Euphrates into a nearby swamp; thus lowering the level of the river so his troops could march through the water and under the river-gates. But they still would not have been able to enter, had not the bronze gates of the inner walls been left inexplicably unlocked. God opened the gates of the city of Babylon for Cyrus, exactly as he declared He would 200 years before it happened!- copied
G. Proverbs 21:1 “The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes."
H. Romans 13:1 “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God."
I. The point is that God is in control and that He can and that He is in control of all history. History is no more than "His Story."
J. Isaiah 45:4-6 "For Jacob My servant's sake, And Israel My elect, I have even called you by your name; I have named you, though you have not known Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other; There is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting That there is none besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other;"
K. God in His sovereignty will enable and use those who do not know Him for the ultimate good of His people in fulfilling His plan for them and that all may know that the LORD is God.
L. His purpose is two-fold:
1. To bring glory to His name - "... they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting That there is none besides Me. I am the Lord, and there is no other"
a. It was only the Lord who could strengthen Cyrus - the pagan deities Marduk, Bel and Nebo were worthless. Only the Lord is God.
b. Isaiah 42:8 " I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another..."
c. Isaiah 43:7 "Everyone who is called by My name, Whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him."
2. To preserve a people for His glory - "For Jacob My servant’s sake, and Israel My elect, I have even called you by your name..."