The Sovereign God
Posted under The Rectory Bulletin | Westminster Confession of Faith
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honour and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” (Revelation 4:11)
“which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords,” (1 Timothy 6:15)
The sixteenth century astronomer Copernicus is mainly remembered for his insistence that the earth, in fact, moves around the sun. The so-called Copernican Revolution demanded that we no longer look at the earth as the centre of the universe, but rather we see it as simply another planet orbiting the sun.
A good few years ago I experienced something similar in my understanding of God. Much modern preaching and writing focuses on how God brings great benefits to the individual, and how prayer might aid us in our lives. All well and good, but over time it began to look as if God was simply there to meet our needs. A sort of divine benefactor and doctor rolled into one.
It was then that I began to see in the Christian tradition an insistence that God is Sovereign. I don’t mean that he is a monarch, but rather that he can do what he wants when he wants. He may choose to work through prayer, but that doesn’t mean he is trapped by it. God needs nothing from us, and anything he gives us is sheer grace. An astonishing act of mercy.
God can do what he pleases, and we should be very wary of sitting in judgment over him. We know very little in comparison to his all knowing knowledge. Better to trust that God is good, and that he works all things for good for those who love him. Sometimes, as the earth rotates around the sun, the days get shorter and darker but that doesn’t mean the sun itself has diminished.