Thursday, January 7, 2010

Is God Still in Control?

Given the current state of the economy and a president that has been espousing socialistic rhetoric, many people have asked me if God is still relevant in today's world and if He is, does he care about what is transpiring as we head into the year 2010. To answer this complex and layered question, it is best to start at the beginning.

The first principle to understand on this topic is that power belongs to God alone. Mankind thinks that he is the one who plans his own destiny but the Bible says that even though we may plan our own way, our steps are directed by the Lord, "A man’s heart plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps." (Proverbs 16:9) We must also realize that leaders and those in authority do not govern outside of God’s will and they have no power to take our nation where God is not going. There are two important passages that explain this. First look at Proverbs 21:1: “The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, Like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes.”

The Bible says that God puts it in the hearts of the world’s leaders to fulfill the purposes of God and the word God has spoken. It is not man who picks his leaders, but God who raises up leaders and orchestrates the events that raises them to power. Look also at Daniel 2:20-21: "Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, For wisdom and might are His. And He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and raises up kings; He gives wisdom to the wise. And knowledge to those who have understanding.”

Bearing in mind that God is ultimately in control than we can surmise that political leaders cannot exalt a nation nor can they bring down a nation. God has the power to turn their hearts, overthrow their plans or bless their efforts. When you really dig down and look at the personal lives of our political leaders during the greatest times of our nation’s glory, you find things that show human nature and not divine inspiration. God is not limited by our leader’s religious views. Even when we had ungodly leaders and men of questionable character, the Lord still blessed the nation. It is not the leaders but the church that determines whether a nation is blessed. Let’s look at a passage that is often quoted but rarely obeyed, 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

God does not say that He exalts the nation because they elect evangelical Christians into office, but rather if His people (the church) humble themselves before Him, repent by turning from their own ways, and seek His face. Only then will God answer this prayer and heal the land. God’s promises are not determined by who are leaders are, but by the holiness of His people.

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