Proverbs 21: Our Creator Rules
Election season, Supreme Court decisions, division, riots, ungodly leaders, violence all over the news... On a large scale, our country and our world appear to be in the hands of evil men. Even in our own small corner of the universe, in our personal lives, it can seem as if we are actually the ones in charge of our own destiny, and consequently, it can also seem like everything is ready to crumble. The root issue, however, is that we are often confused about who is really in charge.
There is a King of kings
“The king's heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.” Proverbs 21:1
The great dichotomy between understanding the role of man’s will and God’s will in determining an outcome is one worth exploring. Proverbs 21 focuses on the question, “Who is really in charge?”
While it often seems like evil men in powerful positions are in ultimately in charge of the outcomes of our lives and our world, this is not the case. In a personal sense, it may seem that a boss, relative, or friend has ultimate power over our lives. This is not true either. These are lies from the enemy.
Only God has ultimate authority and power over the lives of His children and over all creation. Our Heavenly Father sits on His throne even as you are reading this. He is our only constant, the only one we can count on, and He is totally sovereign. There is not one loose molecule in the universe. He truly has "the whole world in His hands”.
God Has the Final Say
“The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the Lord.” Proverbs 21:31
Even when it looks like man will prevail over our lives, it is not so; God has the final word and His wisdom is above all. We can plan, prepare, gather armies of men against the Lord and His plans, but He has the final say. We can attempt to predict the future based on statistics and human counsel, which are hindered by our limited understanding, but God is the one who prevails in the end and carries out His will.
“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.” Isaiah 55:8-9
It is foolish for us to believe the creature can overcome the Creator. R.C. Sproul says, “To believe we can depose the Lord from His throne and become a law unto ourselves, inventing our own standards and rendering ourselves unaccountable to God, is the height of absurdity.”
This is why David says in Psalm 14, “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds; there is none who does good.”
Those who disregard God and His sovereignty are fools because they actually believe they are the sovereign ones and can accomplish whatever they desire. But God laughs at the plans of the wicked and holds them in derision, as they attempt to plot against Him (Psalm 21:1-12).
God Is Worth Trusting
“No wisdom, no understanding, no counsel can avail against the Lord.” Proverbs 21:30
"The Righteous One observes the house of the wicked; he throws the wicked down to ruin." Proverbs 21:12
While the truth of God’s sovereignty should terrify the wicked, it is among the most comforting doctrines to the children of God. In light of all of the sin abounding in our world, despite all of the chaos, regardless of the unpredictability of our days, our sovereign Lord is the one directing all things. We already know the end of the story: God wins.
But, sisters, we are missing the key point if we end here. God’s sovereignty is only a wonderful, comforting truth if God is worth trusting. And the Word tells us, not only is He wise and sovereign, but He is good and promises to work for our good! All those who love Him and are called according to His purpose can rest in the fact that He works all things together for our good and for His glory (Romans 8:28).
Live in Light of His Sovereignty and Goodness
“The way of the guilty is crooked, but the conduct of the pure is upright.” Proverbs 21:8
“Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life, righteousness, and honor.” Proverbs 21:21
While there is a large focus on God’s control and authority, throughout the rest of Proverbs 21, we are given instruction and wisdom on how to live our lives. These little snippets of wisdom range from how to use one’s speech and avoiding angry outbursts to the importance of practicing justice.
The doctrine of God’s sovereignty is indeed a great comfort, but it should also motivate us to live for Him. Understanding God is in charge and His wisdom is higher than our wisdom should cause us to trust Him to know what is best for our lives. And when we trust His instruction, we are driven to obedience. Obedience is an act of faith. It takes faith to obey God even when our emotions are telling us not to. It takes faith in God’s sovereignty and goodness to obey His Word.
Ladies, we cannot be hidden in the undefeatable Lord if we are not in Christ. We cannot trust God will prevail over our enemies and work all things out for our good if our hearts are not repentant and turned toward Him. In fact, if your trust is in your own flesh to save yourself instead of the blood of Christ, you are an enemy of God. To be a child of God means to repent and believe the gospel. Listen carefully: the Almighty God, in His sovereignty and goodness, sent His Son to live the life you could not live and die the death you could not die so you could have life and stand forgiven, righteous, and loved by the Father. Believe today, and have great hope that He will hide you in the cleft of his wing and carry through on His promises to protect and fight for your good and for His glory.
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:31-32
Chelsey Meissner is obsessed with seeing and savoring Jesus. She is a lover of books, coffee, cats, running, and all things vintage. Chelsey is excited to travel the the world with her husband, Eric, who is a Marine Officer.