Category Archives: Knowing God

Discovering God in the Psalms: God is Still Doing Wonders

O give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures for ever. O give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures for ever;  to him who alone does great wonders, for his steadfast love endures for ever.  Ps. 136:2-4 (NRS)

Does God still do great wonders today? When we read the Bible, it’s hard to ignore the mighty wonders of God in Creation, The Exodus, and His plan of salvation. His wonders are clearly demonstrated from Genesis to Revelation, as He reveals Himself to His creature, man.

I choose to differentiate between God’s wonders and His miracles. I view miracles as God’s favor demonstrated in a particular incident, circumstance, or time. Wonders, on the other hand, include all the acts of God’s goodness and greatness, transcending time and circumstance.

Psalm 136 is entitled, “A Litany of God’s Wonders”. In each verse, the Psalmist captures the wonders of God in the history of Israel. The Psalmists begins and ends this psalm by declaring the need to give thanks for God’s mercy. Mercy (checed) is translated as “favor and loving kindness.” It is in the context of His mercy that God’s wonders are performed. In verse 4, the Psalmist reminds us of two key facts.

God alone does wonders. It is in the remembrance of God’s wonders that He sought Israel’s faithfulness and trust. That remembrance of God’s wonders is even more critical for us today as we tend to minimize God’s ability and glorify man’s accomplishments.

God’s mercy endures forever. God lives in eternity and therefore, is not limited to the confines of “time”. God’s forever includes both “chronological time” and “the social times” in which we find ourselves. God’s mercy, favor, and loving kindness are always available.

While God has done great wonders in the past, He is still doing wonders today. Perhaps we miss God’s wonders in our lives by crediting them to luck or as happenstance. Perhaps we attribute His wonders to our own abilities or to our social networks and connections. All the above are foolish thinking. It is God alone Who stands ready to “show Himself strong” on behalf of man (2 Chronicles 16:9).

It has been said that we are one generation away from losing our belief in God. The result is a country that minimizes the supernatural power of the Most Holy God. One minister observed, “Man has humanized God and deified himself.” Let us continue to share the many wonders of God–those in the Bible and in our lives. This includes the greatest wonder of all, our salvation.

As I view our nation and the challenges we face, it is evident that our future lies not in political leadership, technological breakthrough, nor financial health. We’ve tried them all. Our future lies with “the God of gods, the Lord of lords; to Him who alone does great wonders” (Ps. 136:4).

Discovering God in the Psalms: Victory over Darkness

Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You, but the night shines as the day; The darkness and the light are both alike to You.

Psalm 139:12 (NKJ)

Children are typically afraid of the dark. It is in the dark where “things go bang in the night” and where unseen dangers may lie. Darkness is defined as the absence of visible light. Darkness is changed only by the introduction of light. One can never fully appreciate the value of light until they have experienced the unsettling feeling of being “in the dark.”

Although children fear the darkness, there is one time when they ignore that fear—when it’s time to play “hide and seek.” Darkness provides the “perfect condition” for its execution; it is in the darkness that a person can remain unseen as they blend into the trees’ shadows and the surrounding houses. If, however, this game were to be played with God, one would find themselves at a marked disadvantage. Why? Because darkness and light are alike to Him—the night shines as the day. It is God’s omnipresence that provides the believer the “perfect condition” for victory over darkness.

Light and darkness are a natural phenomenon associated with day and night. People also use the terms metaphorically, especially in Scripture where the two are given theological significance. In the Old Testament, God acted at Creation to separate and distinguish between darkness and light, night and day (Gen. 1:4, 5, 18). Darkness was also associated with judgment and distress (Ex.10:21; Ps. 91:6), God’s hiddenness (Dt. 4:11; 5:23) and divine intervention (Isa. 9:2; Ps. 18:28). Darkness is a powerful New Testament image. While darkness is used as a moral metaphor to describe sinful acts and sinful life style (Rom. 13:12; Eph. 5:11), it also used to describe the evil power, holding people in its dominion (Col. 1:13).

Darkness in our scripture text references the oppressive nature of darkness. “Hide” in Hebrew means to “to crush or bruise.” In the Old Testament it is used only here and in Genesis 3:15 and Job 9:17. Even believers feel spiritual darkness’ crushing power as it attempts to control them through their unredeemed flesh (Rom. 7:17-25). It is here that God’s omnipresence can lead believers to victory through darkness.

Darkness cannot hide. It is God’s presence (through His indwelling Spirit) that exposes and dispels darkness. Believers are rescued from the realm of darkness to become children of the light (Eph. 5:8, 14). They share a place in God’s kingdom of light (Col. 1:12) and even act as light in this dark world (Mat.5:14-16). The believer’s life reflects Jesus’ light and ultimately declare his praises (1 Pet. 2:9). It is in Christ that we have victory over darkness. Jesus Christ was the “change agent” that was introduced into darkness (Mat. 4:16) giving life and light to all who would receive it (Ps. 36:9).

The prophets promised that one day God Himself would live among men to replace the sun as their “everlasting light.” Isaiah 60:19-20 reads:

“The sun shall no longer be your light by day, Nor for brightness shall the moon give light to you; But the LORD will be to you an everlasting light, And your God your glory. Your sun shall no longer go down, Nor shall your moon withdraw itself; For the LORD will be your everlasting light, And the days of your mourning shall be ended.”

Praise God for His Light.

Discovering God in the Psalms: Take Time to Praise

“Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness,
and for his wonderful works to the children of men!

Psalm 107:8 (NKJ)

Our text for today’s WordBytes comes from the 107th division of the Psalms. There is nothing more gratifying to the soul than to praise the Lord during private devotions. It is the soul’s release which allows our innermost being to render tokens of gratitude and adoration to the Lord.  That power is multiplied when experienced in corporate worship with other believers.

The psalms found in this fifth division lend themselves to an overall liturgical purpose befitting public worship for the Jewish people of that time and for us today.

Sometimes, however, we become so entangled with the events of our lives that we forget to take time to praise. We overlook the fact that our praise and worship is not only pleasing to God, but it’s also the quickest way to access the power and provision of the Lord. Why is that true? Because the Lord inhabits the praises of His people (Ps. 22:3). This imperative to “praise the LORD” is repeated four times (vv. 8, 15, 21, 31).  In this psalm it is to impress its importance as we journey through this life.

Oh that men would praise the LORD. Men must be reminded to praise God. They become bound to personal agendas and circumstances, leaving little room or time to praise God. Praise is squandered on mortal man with his accomplishments, often forgetting that God created the universe, thrones, principalities and powers. All things were created by Him and for Him (Col. 1:16).  To praise God for His greatness is to acknowledge His authority and sovereign rule. It’s interesting to observe that the angels are not commanded to praise God–they do it willingly (Rev. 5:11-14; 7:11-12).

For His goodness. To say, “God is good”, is to trivialize His true nature and character. Goodness (hesed) in Hebrew means “unfailing, loyal love.” It is often based on a prior relationship, in this case, our covenant relationship with God. As believers, we have entered into an everlasting covenant with God, through His Son and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This New Covenant promises us restoration of our relationship with God (Rom. 5:1), forgiveness of sin (Matt. 26:27-28), sonship (1 John 3:1-2), and an eternal inheritance (Heb. 9:15).

For His wonderful works to the children of men. In reading Psalm 107, God’s “wonderful works” are His acts of mercy to those whom He had entered into covenant relationship with. These wonderful works are amazing and cause us to be astounded as God intervened on behalf of mankind. After men “cried unto the LORD” (vv. 6, 13, 19, 28) and had come to “their wits’ end” (27), it was God who “led them out and brought them forth.” It was God who “healed and restored, delivered and saved.” Then men lifted their voices in worship and praise (vv. 22, 32).

As believers, we have much to praise God for each day. We should praise Him for the “works” He performs on our behalf–for protection and provision and for grace and mercy. God is worthy of our praise for His love, for salvation and for eternal life. We ought to enter into perpetual praise throughout the day, as the angels do in heaven. We have even more reason to praise God than the angels in that He came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. (John 10:10).

Discovering God in the Psalms: The Silence of God

 

“These things you have done, and I kept silent; You thought that I was altogether like you; But I will rebuke you, And set them in order before your eyes.”  Psalm 50:21 (NKJ)

As I survey current events, my heart weeps. Crime against mankind continues to escalate. Abuse of the poor and defenseless, witness to the selfishness of the society we now live in.  Even the “heavens and the earth” suffer from the blatant disregard of man for God’s creation (Titus 3:3).

As social and religious groups unite in prayer to regain their community and their country, many ask the question, “Where is God?” They want to know if He hears…does He see. Why does God remain silent when there is so much injustice and wrongdoing? God does hear and see. He will not remain silent forever. He will set His house in order.

Of the many attributes of God, the one most misunderstood is His justice. Believers are quick to acknowledge God’s moral attributes–grace, mercy, and love, but His justice seems out of character with who they believe Him to be.

Perhaps these misinformed believers hope that His moral qualities will “ignore or overlook” their obvious disregard for His laws and commandments. God administers His kingdom in accordance with His law and expects His moral agents, believers, to adhere to the standards of justice which He has established. (Micah 6:8)

At times the rule of God does not appear to be “just.” Evil flourishes and everything continues as it always has (2 Pet. 3:4). Sin appears unpunished and righteousness seems to go unrewarded (Psalm 73:3-12). C. S. Lewis, acclaimed novelist and lay theologian, helps us keep God’s justice in perspective:

The justice of God must not be evaluated on a short-term basis. Within this life it will often appear incomplete or imperfect. Earthly life is not all there is, however. There is a life beyond and in the scope of all eternity; God’s justice will be complete.

The religious leaders of Jesus’ day suffered from both hypocrisy and rebellion. They refused the Living Word who lived among them. Today God has given us both His Word and His Holy Spirit to lead us into truth and righteousness. Do not turn Him away. “… the Lord’s hand is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear” (Isaiah 59:1).

In His silence, God is speaking loudly. God’s longsuffering and grace should never be looked upon as indifference (2 Peter 3:3-10).  He has already dealt with sin (2 Cor. 5:21) and He will deal with the last vestiges of rebellion and disobedience. God does hear (Psalm 55:19).

Discovering God in the Psalms: Forget Not God

“Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits.”
Psalm 103:2 (KJV)

Memories of a person, place, or thing affect our beliefs and habits.  Every aspect of our lives is influenced by our memory. That’s why it’s so important to remember all that God has done, is doing, and will do for us.

The 103rd Psalm is a general praise psalm written to magnify the name of God and boast of His greatness. It is arranged in three parts: (1) call to praise, (2) cause for praise, and (3) conclusion with new exhortation to praise the Lord. In this psalm, readers are told not to forget the benefits God has extended to His covenant people. These same benefits are ours today, in the twenty-first century.

  • Forgiveness of iniquities. Who other than God can forgive sin? Through Christ’s sacrifice and atoning blood, not only are our sins forgiven but our “sin nature” has been rendered “inoperative” (Rom. 6:14; Heb. 2:14-15). If we “fall short”, we need only confess and God faithfully forgives us (1 John 1:9). He then removes remembrance of them to the furthest points of existence-even to the heavens (Ps. 103:11-12). There is no other god or religion that offers such forgiveness.
  • Healing of diseases. Disease is the result of sin’s entrance into the world. It was not part of God’s original plan for His beloved creation. Yet God, within His providential will, provides physical healing-both on this side and the “other side” (2 Cor. 5:1; Rev. 21:4). Spiritual healing is now available to release us from anger, shame, guilt, and unforgiveness. After His temptation in the wilderness, Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit and spoke these words in the synagogue in Nazareth, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me. He hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised” (Luke 4:14-19). Jesus is our Healer today.
  • Redemption of life from destruction. In Hebrew, destruction or sahat, is translated pit or dungeon; corruption or decay. Before God’s intervention (through Jesus Christ) we were “in a hole, destined to die.” The sin of one man, Adam, caused death to rule over us, but all who receive God’s wonderful, gracious gift of righteousness will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. (Rom. 5:17) God will continually save us from the world, Satan, and our “old nature.” He is our Preserver (Ps. 145:14-20).
  • Crowning with lovingkindness and tender mercies. God’s lovingkindness and tender mercies are evidenced from Genesis to Revelation, as He provides and protects His covenant people. Through our confession of faith in Christ, lovingkindness was extended to us, as Abraham’s seed and heirs to the promise (Gal. 3:29). The literal translation of tendermercies is “tender and compassion.” It expresses love of a superior for an inferior; this love is seen in the deep feelings that move the superior to help. While we were without strength to save ourselves Christ died for us (Rom. 5:6).
  • Satisfaction with “good things”. The NIV rendering of this verse is “He satisfies your desires with good things.” When we are obedient to God, we are in the center of His will. He will give us what is best for our life-even when we don’t see it. The result is renewal of hope and trust and the ability to continue our walk of faith. “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in You!” Psalm 84:11-12 (NIV)
Regardless of our schedules and priorities, we must never forget all of God’s benefits. He has given us so much. Who could ever forget?

Discovering God in the Psalms: Desperately Seeking God

 

0 God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land where no water is.  Psalm 63:1 (KJV)

Recent news featured several individuals who were lost in the wilderness.

One story told of a young boy who became separated from his family when he left them in search of mushrooms. In another story, a hiker who left her team experienced a dangerous fall. With a badly broken leg she crawled miles through the woods until she was discovered. In both stories, their separation from others resulted in fear and despair until they were rescued from their dire situation.

In Psalm 63, its author, David, conveys his feelings of despair as he finds himself separated from the presence of Almighty God. It is in this Psalm that we find David desperately seeking God.

The historical context for this psalm can be found in 2 Samuel 15. David’s despair is the result of his son Absalom’s conspiracy to steal the kingdom from his father. Fearful of the potential shift in power, David vacates his throne in Jerusalem and heads to the wilderness of Judah:

And all the country wept with a loud voice, and all the people passed over: the king also himself passed over the brook Kidron, all the people crossed over toward the way of the wilderness. (2 Sam. 15:23).

While David was in fact, in a physical wilderness, the wilderness he speaks of in Psalm 63 describes metaphorically his desperate longing for God’s presence.  His need to spiritually reconnect with God took on the characteristics of a person physically suffering great thirst in a dry and parched wasteland.

David’s desire for God became the first thing he sought when he rose in the morning. His soul (his mind, will and emotions) thirsted for God. His flesh responded to this insatiable thirst in a strong longing to be with God.  “To long” in Hebrew (kamahn) means “to faint with longing.” David was faint from longing for his God.

David’s emotional response in the wilderness mirrored what he probably heard while worshiping in the sanctuary in Jerusalem:

As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, 0 God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God? (Ps. 42:1-2).

David now knew what it felt like to experience thirst for the Living God.

Though David had never seen God physically, he had personally experienced God’s power and glory through His nature and attributes. He knew God’s love and mercy as he tended to his father’s sheep as a young boy (Ps. 23).

David was witness to God’s protection as he faced the giant Goliath (1 Sam. 17:49-51). David knew the source of his success in battle against Israel’s enemies (1 Sam. 18:5, 7). David knew the power of God’s presence.

Remembrance of those times gave David confident assurance that God would graciously hear and answer His call (Isa. 30:19). It was in God’s presence only that David would find spiritual relief for his thirst.

In today’s society people are desperately seeking relief for their spiritual thirst. They are searching for life options they feel will satisfy their needs through hedonistic pursuits, spiritual experimentation, and material gain.

These efforts unfortunately never satisfy and often result in further despair and darkness. God our Father and Creator knows and possesses what is needed for spiritual dryness. Only He can truly satisfy man’s needs. Let us, like David, seek greater intimacy with God, driven by an unquenchable thirst for His presence. Let us desperately seek God!

God Is His Word!

“The law of the LORD is perfect.” Ps. 19:7 (NKJV)

People often use the phrase, “good as his word” to assert one’s personal dependability and trustworthiness.  Words reflect a person’s true character and show what he or she is about (Matt 12:34; Mark 7:15).  This is especially true of God.  However, where human words are frail and finite, God’s words are creative, perfect, and powerful.  God’s Word reveals much about His nature.  God is His Word!

The Word of God refers to Scripture itself.  It was Moses who first received the written Word from God.  Although written on pillars of stone, The Ten Commandments outlined God’s expectation of man.  By obeying them, the Israelite people would be better prepared to live in “right relationship” with God and his fellowman.

In preparing the nation of Israel to enter the Promised Land, God instructed Moses to strongly emphasize adherence to His commands, decrees, and laws (Deut. 6:1-19).  These would serve as an abiding written record of God’s person, presence, and ways.  The men, specifically, were to “teach and talk” about them in their homes.  God’s Word was to not only influence but also shape everything they did—from when they “lied down to sleep at night to when they rose in the morning.”

Different yet all key in revealing God’s nature

In Psalm 19, we see different names that are used for God’s Word such as the law, the statues and the judgments.  In each verse, a different set of nouns are used to describe God’s nature revealed in His Word.  In using this literary device, the psalmist, highlights the transforming power of God.  Through His Word, God converts and makes wise: He rejoices and enlightens the eyes (Eph. 1:18-19).  God true character is reflected in the Word He speaks.

The final couplet speaks to the righteous durability of God’s Word—“it endures forever and is true and right.”  The Prophet Isaiah rejoiced in the fact that, “The grass withers, the flower fades but the word of God stands forever (Is. 40:8).” God’s Word can even penetrate and judge the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12-13).  Just as “there is nothing hidden from the sun’s heat” (Ps. 19:6), there is “nothing in all creation hidden from God’s sight”.  God is Eternal Creator, Transformer, Everywhere present, and All-knowing.        

Pursuit of God’s Word is to be desired

God’s Word is to be desired more than monetary riches or physical luxuries.  Through His Word, God offers “incorruptible” rewards—spiritual discernment and godly wisdom that will provide the knowledge and sensitivities needed to navigate this world.

Ps. 19:11 offers a final declaration as to the essential benefit of God’s Word—“by them [the Word of God] we are warned and in keeping them there is great reward.” God’s Word is the “fail safe” for man’s conscience.  It offers truth that is desperately needed in a postmodern world that denies the need for absolute truth and moral standards.

Our 21st century culture is “imploding” as a result of misinformation and propaganda through intentional abuse of social media thereby making it difficult to differentiate between truth and lies.  The acceptance of untruth is so pervasive that a new word was added to the dictionary in 2016 to describe it—post truth.   But as believers we are dependent on God, who through His Word, offers the “the way, the truth, and the light.” God cannot lie (Numbers 23:19). Consequently His Word can be trusted (Heb. 6:18).  God is His Word!

The Abundance of God

And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed,

“The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering,

and abundant in goodness and truth.”

Exodus 34:6 (KJV)

In an age of scarcity, high costs, and uncertainty, God offers abundance.  God’s abundance extends beyond a measure of material quantity but is seen in its “spiritual quality”.  Abundance infers power and ability.

God offers abundance in many areas that mankind is in desperate need of today.

  • He offers for all who would believe in Him an abundance of mercy—relief from the punishment we deserve. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.” (1 Peter 1:3)
  • He offers grace—His unmerited favor. “For where sin abound, grace did much more abound.” (Rom. 5:20)
  • He offers an abundance of lovingkindness. “For I know that You are gracious…and abundant in lovingkindness. “ (Jonah 4:2) Who couldn’t use more of that!

The place where this type of abundance was desperately needed was in the area of human sin.  Throughout history, God had sought solutions to man’s sin condition.  He used mediators to “stand in the gap”—prophets and priests (Heb. 8:6).   He instituted sacrifices to cover man’s sin—the blood of goats and calves (Heb. 12:9) but none proved to be sufficient and effective in extinguishing sin.

However, when Christ entered the landscape of time, God offered an abundance of grace through His Son’s precious blood thereby eliminating sin’s power and obtaining eternal redemption.  Christ also offered the gift of righteousness—the state or condition of perfectly conforming to God’s perfect law and holy character (Romans 3:21-26).

Abundance, by its very definition, offers the promise of great supply and more than sufficient quantity.   God offers abundance plus much more for our daily wants and needs.  There is no need to worry or fear that we will deplete God’s abundance of grace.  In an age of scarcity, high costs, and uncertainty, God alone offers us inexhaustible abundance.  

Fellowship with God

“That which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.   And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.”    1 John 1:3-4

What does “fellowship with God” look like in the life of the believer?  Fellowship has been described as the sharing of experiences with likeminded people.  However, fellowship with God is much more, for “who has known the mind of God?” (Romans 11:34)  The believer’s fellowship with the Father is dependent upon accepting His Son as Lord and Savior.  It is through Jesus Christ that believers begin to “know by experience” God’s heart and mind.  Such was the case with the Apostle John and the disciples were uniquely privileged to witness, first hand, the person and works of Christ.

  • “That which was seen” included the many miracles of Christ; miracles that would attest to the coming of the promised Messiah (Matt. 11:2-5). 
  • “That which was heard” were truths that Christ declared concerning the kingdom of God and His offer of eternal life (Luke 4:43; 9:11).
  • “That which was looked upon and our hands handed” recounted the disciples’ examination of Christ’s glorified body after the resurrection (John 20:27).

All of the disciples’ senses were engaged as Christ manifested (revealed) Himself and the Father.  Since Father and Son were one (John 17:11, 22), the disciples concurrently experienced fellowship with the Father (v. 3).  The disciple’s experience with Christ was not viewed from a distance but up close and personal.

Fellowship (koinonia or koy-nohn-ee’-ah) is translated as “communion” and “joint participation in a common life.”   John’s personal witness was an invitation to the early church to participate in a life style that centered on relationship—unending communion with God the Father and the Son.    Therein is the basis for John’s reason for sharing about fellowship with God:  so that their “joy may be full” (v.4).

Joy (pleroo or play-ro’o) means “to fill to the top so nothing is wanting; to complete”.  One explanation of joy is to cause God’s will to be obeyed as it should be and God’s promises to receive fulfillment.  Joy begins and ends with fellowship with the Father and the Son (Luke 4:21).

How would you describe your fellowship with God?  Have you seen, heard, and looked upon Christ presence in you daily walk of faith?  Do you have joy and is it full?  Many times we miss the opportunity to fellowship with God because of competing priorities and the busyness of life.  Perhaps sinful behavior patterns and unhealthy influences have interrupted your fellowship with God.  We are to walk daily in fellowship with God, armed with the knowledge that you are no longer “slaves to sin” but “servants of righteousness” producing fruit of holiness (Rom. 6: 22).

Though John’s letter was written thousands of years ago, its message is still relevant for today.  To both the believer and unbeliever, it is an invitation to participate with the only true Source of joy.  Jesus invites us to draw near with faith (Heb. 10:22) and learn of Him (Matt. 11:29). In return, those in Christ enjoy glorious fellowship with Him.  Let us be faithful witnesses to what it means to live in fellowship with God.

The Lord Reigns

Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; And let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns.” 1 Chronicles 16:31 (NKJ)

The Lord reigns?  To some this may be a question spoken in general disbelief.  As one looks around this world and our nation, there is question as to the reality of God and God’s involvement in the activities of mankind.  Does God really care about me? Does God see me in “my” situation—in my humanness?

  • We look around and see the effects of sin on our world. Even in the midst of “peril, sword, and nakedness”, God extends to mankind love, mercy, and grace.  In gratitude for God’s reign, David cried out:  “Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”  (1 Chron. 1:34)
  • Outside God’s reign, man struggles with and against “life”; his intent is to control the challenges of 21st century living. Doing what feels “right in their own eyes” (Prov. 21:2), men often disregard the plans of God and God’s purpose for this world.
  • “God reigns” whether people choose to believe it or not. Their unbelief does not reduce or minimize the reality of God’s reign.  God is patient and long suffering not wishing that anyone would perish but that all will come to the knowledge and recognition of His lordship (1 Tim. 2:4).

The Lord reigns!  This is the reality and declaration of people of faith who anchor their lives to the “King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God” (1 Tim. 1:17).  God is the only One worthy of our loyalty and praise.

  • As we witness the impact of economic disparity, social injustice, and moral failure in the world, our expectation of fairness is founded in the fact that God reigns!
  • As the doctor renders a diagnosis that leads to extensive treatments yet no guarantee of success, our hope for healing lies in the belief that God reigns!
  • As we face our own mortality evidenced in the frailty of our bodies and failure of our souls, our eternal security is guaranteed in Christ, our inheritance because God reigns!

People of faith trust that even in the suffering and pain, God is working all things together for His glory and ultimately our good (Rom. 8:28).  We know that our God is eternal—reigning both in “human time” (chronos) and “His perfect time” (kiros).  We wait and watch for His hand at work around us and in our life (Psa. 123:1-2).

The Lord reigns.  To you I offer this as a statement of reality and personal identity.  The reality is that God alone is sovereign.  It is because of His goodness and greatness that He alone is worthy to rule over the hearts of men and nations.  Our personal identity in Christ guarantees our reign with Him in glory (Rom. 8:17).

  • God alone is motivated by love—in first loving us (1 John 4:9-10) God offers grace and mercy to all who humbly come to Him by faith with no fear of retribution or risk of punishment.
  • God’s perfection, purity and trustworthiness enable Him to rule impartially and fairly. God alone can be both “just” and the justifier” for sinful man (Rom. 3:24-26).
  • God is the only real answer for the “heart issues” we face in 21st century living. The Lord’s reign over heaven and earth gives us hope in the midst of a “fallen” (Gen. 3) and “falling” world (1 John 2:16-17).

The Lord’s reign is fully realized in the coming of Jesus the Christ.  In Jesus’ arrival the kingdom of God is ushered into this world we now live in.  It is here that those who are in Christ are to take authority and witness to this glorious fact—God reigns!