The Sovereignty of God
Although the doctrine of the sovereignty of God can be a contentious one (see our episode on Election), we felt like it would be a good launching point before heading into our T.U.L.I.P. series.
Not all Christians agree on this topic (surprise, surprise), but we're convinced that the Scriptures make a compelling argument in favor of God's complete sovereignty.
We would be in agreement with Charles Spurgeon, who said the following regarding God's sovereignty:
"I believe that every particle of dust that dances in the sunbeam does not move an atom more or less than God wishes."
As a helpful resource, we've included below a non-exhaustive list of passages referencing God's control over all things. Hopefully it proves to be helpful.
Daniel 4:35 all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and he does according to his will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth;
and none can stay his hand or say to him, “What have you done?”
Proverbs 15:3 The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good.
Proverbs 16:4 The Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble.
Proverbs 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.
Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand.
Job 31:4 Does not he see my ways and number all my steps?
Job 42:2 I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
Proverbs 16:33 The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord.
Proverbs 20:24 A man’s steps are from the Lord; how then can man understand his way?
Jeremiah 10:23 I know, O Lord, that the way of man is not in himself, that it is not in man who walks to direct his steps.
Proverbs 21:1 The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.
Ezra 6:22 And they kept the Feast of Unleavened Bread seven days with joy, for the Lord had made them joyful and had turned the heart of the king of Assyria to them, so that he aided them in the work of the house of God, the God of Israel.
Ezra 7:27 Blessed be the Lord, the God of our fathers, who put such a thing as this into the heart of the king, to beautify the house of the Lord that is in Jerusalem,
Proverbs 16:1 The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
Lamentations 3:37 Who has spoken and it came to pass, unless the Lord has commanded it?
Ephesians 1:5 he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,
Ephesians 1:11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
Isaiah 45:7 I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things.
Isaiah 63:17 O LORD, why do you make us wander from your ways and harden our heart, so that we fear you not? Return for the sake of your servants, the tribes of your heritage.
Isaiah 64:7 There is no one who calls upon your name, who rouses himself to take hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us, and have made us melt in the hand of our iniquities.
1 Peter 1:1-2 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.
Romans 11:36 For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.
Colossians 1:16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.
Matthew 10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.
Romans 9 [the entire chapter]
Romans 8:28-30 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
Revelation 13:8 and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.
1 Timothy 1:9 who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,
Psalm 105:25 He turned their hearts to hate his people, to deal craftily with his servants.
Psalm 115:3 Our God is in the heavens;
he does all that he pleases.
Acts 4:27-28 for truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place.
Amos 3:6 Is a trumpet blown in a city and the people are not afraid? Does disaster come to a city unless the LORD has done it?
Ultimately, this doctrine should give us greater confidence in every area of life. When we suffer, we can trust that God has not lost control of the situation, but is rather using it for our good (Genesis 50:20; Romans 8:28). When we experience success, we can be all the more grateful for what God has kindly granted us. While sharing our faith with others, we can rest knowing that it isn't our job to convert, but rather to proclaim the gospel (Romans 10:14-15).
The sovereignty of God should not only stir in us great joy, but also establish a deep rooted peace for every season of life.