Summary: God is in control - over all, big shots; little shots; and those who ought to be shot!
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1. The other day I was sitting out in the front yard and noticed my hammock. I decided it would be a good idea to take a little siesta. But I go so preoccupied with something else, that I never got around too it.
The next day I noticed a large tree branch had fallen on top of it! I do not know when it fell but if I had been laying in it I might not be here today. Immediately I thought of something my mother once told me. It seems my grandmother, when she was just a teen was planning to go somewhere with her friends. Her Dad had a bad feeling about, he could not get it out of his mind the thought of a train.
He refused to let my grandmother go and strange as it may seem, their car was hit by a train at a crossing and all of them were killed. If she had been killed, I would not be here today!
My dad was once in a car accident as a young man, they didn’t even bother to put him in a room because they did not think he would live very long. He ended up being in a comma for some 30 days, but lived through it. If my dad had died then, I would not be here today!
2. Those are not experiences are not as dynamic as Moses parting the Red Sea or God shutting the mouths of the lions for Daniel, but they are as much a part of the Providential Hand of God as any one of them.
God’s name is not even mentioned in the book of Esther, but His invisible hand is seen over and over again.
3. The Providence of God in those He has Empowered.
Esther 1:1 (NKJV)
1 Now it came to pass in the days of Ahasuerus (this was the Ahasuerus who reigned over one hundred and twenty-seven provinces, from India to Ethiopia),
I. For starters, the kings Reign. 1:1
A. The Theology.
Providence – it comes from the Latin, providential. Pro means “before” or “ahead of time”; videntia is from videre, meaning “to see” from which we get our English word “video.” Putting it together, it means “seeing ahead of time.” God sees all – past, present, and future. As He is a Being who transcends time. And the One who determines what happens, because He is the creator, sustainer, and controller of all things. Eph. 1:11
Packer, “Providence of God is the unceasing activity of the Creator whereby, in overflowing bounty and goodwill, He upholds His creatures in ordered existence, guides and governs all events, circumstances, and free acts of angels and men, and directs everything to its appointed goal, for His own glory.”
God rules over all (I Chron.29:12); He is the only ruler (I Tim.6:15); and He is sovereign over all the kingdoms that have or will ever be (Dan. 4:17).
Augustine, “Nothing happens unless the Omnipotent wills it to happen; he either permits it to happen or He brings it about Himself.”
Philip Hughes, “Under God, all things are without exception fully controlled – despite all appearances to the contrary.”
Prov. 16:9; 19:21; 21:30/Eccles.7:13/Lam.3:37/Ja.4:15/Job 42:2/Psa.115:3/Isa.14:27; 43:13; 46:10/Eph.1:11/etc.
Ahasuerus was king only because God made him king, and God ultimately controlled him (Prov. 21:1/Ezra 1:1/Isa.45:4-5/Gen.20:6/Deut.2:30/etc.
Spurgeon, “Napoleon once heard it said, that man proposes and God disposes. “Ah” said Napoleon, “but I propose and dispose too!” How do you think he proposed and disposed? He proposed to go and take Russia; he proposed to make all Europe him. He proposed to destroy that power, and how did he come back again? How had he disposed it? He came back solitary and alone, his mighty army perished and wasted, having well-nigh eaten and devoured one another through hunger. Man proposes and God disposes!”
Bridges, “Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken. This required Joseph and Mary to go to the town of Bethlehem to register at just the right time or the Messiah to be born in Bethlehem in fulfillment of Micah’s prophecy (Mica 5:2). Caesar certainly did not intend to be an instrument to fulfill any Jewish prophecy, yet that is exactly what he was.”
Ac. 4:27-28; Rom. 13:1-4; Isa. 40:23-24/I Ki.12:15/etc.
John Newton, “The kings of the earth are continually disturbing the world with their schemes of ambition. They expect to carry everything before them, and seldom any higher end in view, than the gratification of their own passions. But in all they do they are but servants of his great King and Lord, and fulfill His purposes as the instruments he employs to inflict prescribed punishment upon transgressors against Him, or to open a way for the spread of His gospel. They had one thing in view, He had another.”