The Bible promises not only is God active, He is always acting for His people’s good. If you are a believer God is acting, and He is always acting for your good.
Sometimes people struggle with this doctrine, and you can understand that.
For one, there’s a lot going on in our world that is difficult to understand. Hey, even sometimes writers of Scripture struggled to understand exactly what God was doing. If God is that active, why is our world the way it is? But you need to remember just because we can’t understand what God is doing doesn’t mean He’s not doing something. The difference between how much God knows and how much we know is infinite. We’re not even in the same class. God is that much smarter than us. You are not really going to profit from what the Scripture says about the providence of God unless you remember that God is the Maker and Creator of this world, and you need to humble yourself before Him. Some people think that just because they can’t understand the way God works, that means He can’t work that way. But Scripture tells us flat out his judgments are unsearchable, his ways are past find out. “Who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been His counselor?”
It doesn’t surprise me that I can’t understand everything about how God is governing this world; because He’s God.
When it comes to all the ins and outs of the way God is governing this world, that’s not really something we can understand, we can only understand what He’s said about it, and that is that He is, that He is doing what He is doing for our good, and that He’s going to work it all out, and we rest in that. It’s not our job to argue with God about how to do His job. It’s our job to trust and obey.
If I could understand everything about what God was doing I’d be pretty worried, because my mind is pretty small and if He limited Himself to only doing what I could understand that would mean He wouldn’t be doing much.
Others struggle with the doctrine of God’s providence, because they think if God is this involved, if God is this active, then it means we have no responsibility. And that’s flat out – not true.
Can God sin? No. Habakkuk says “His eyes are too pure to look on evil.” Can God tempt a man to sin? No. James says, “He cannot be tempted by evil, nor can He tempt anyone to do evil.” Is man responsible for his sin? Yes. I mean God is not joking when he comes and rebukes His people. When he says in Isaiah 1:2, Look these people that “I have reared and brought up have revolted against Me…” This is not some sort of cosmic joke. They have acted corruptly. They have revolted against God and they are responsible for it.
Scripture shouts out: God is Sovereign. Scripture also shouts out: Man is responsible for the choices he makes.
This is one of those truths that it is easier for us to know that it is, and what it is, than for us to understand exactly how it is. But listen, if you are only going to believe the things that you can completely and entirely explain then you are not going to believe much. I mean there are a lot of things in the natural world that we know are true, but we don’t know how they are true.
Now you would think I was a fool if I went around saying, “I don’t believe in light. I just don’t think it’s real.” You say, “Why don’t you believe in light?” “Because I don’t fully understand how it works.” Come on. Get real.
Even the experts argue about most things. Someone says this is how it works, and another person says no you are absolutely wrong, this is how it works. Just because these wise, intelligent men can’t fully explain how it works, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work. And if that’s true as far as Creation goes, which is just the work of God’s fingers, Creation didn’t take him any effort, it was just a snap to Him, than how much more true that must be when it comes to actually talking and thinking about God’s nature and His essence.
Instead of warring and struggling and fighting against God’s providence, against the biblical truth that God is actively and intimately involved in absolutely everything that is going on in this universe; we ought to find comfort and strength in it. God is a God who acts. He has acted and is acting in your life. It’s easy to read the stories of Scripture and see how God was at work in the lives of various men and women of God, and forget that God is just as active in the lives of each and every one of us. He is. And we need to believe it.