• Providence and Evil

    James 1:13

    We see God’s ordination of wickedness for a good end most clearly in the crucifixion. God used the evil plans of Christ’s enemies to fulfill His good plan for His people (Acts 2:23). An evil act is ...Read More

  • Providence and Freedom

    Job 1

    Man freely does what he wants, but apart from Christ he only desires sin (Rom. 6:6; Gal. 4:8). God has renewed His people, enabling them to desire what is good. Those He has passed over choose willingly, in ...Read More

  • Providence and God’s Inheritance

    Ephesians 1:11-12

    Our Creator does not need anything from us, which makes it all the more remarkable that He purposed in eternity past to make us His own inheritance. This is a great privilege, and it is due entirely to His sovereign ...Read More

  • Providence and Gratitude

    1 Thessalonians 5:18

    The Heidelberg Catechism says that knowledge of God’s sovereign providence enables us to be thankful when things go well for us (Q&A 28). That is certainly true. However, we can also be thankful when things go ill, not because of the pain in and of itself, but because we know the Lord is working in it for His glory and our good. Let us cultivate a grateful attitude toward God, informed by the knowledge that everything is truly in His hand.Read More

  • Providence and Prayer

    James 5:16b–18

    Divine providence should not hinder prayer. Instead it should make us eager to intercede for ourselves and others, because we know God makes use of our prayers to accomplish His will. Consider this example: If my wife is ill, how ...Read More

  • Pursuing the Quest for Purpose

    Think about how proximate purpose may be contributing to God’s remote purpose in your life.Read More

  • Sovereign and Faithful

    Esther 6:14–8:17

    When we look back over our lives, we often find that the Lord was conspicuously present during those times when we thought He was absent. During the times when we suffer from doubts about God’s love for us, we ...Read More

  • Sovereign over Our Steps

    Proverbs 16:9

    Human freedom and divine sovereignty exist in a complex, mysterious relationship. Though God ordains all of our choices—even choices that end up being thwarted because they do not match the results that He has ordained—we can never blame ...Read More

  • Sovereign Separation

    Philemon 15-16

    Slowness to identify God’s design is important when we deal with tragedies. Too often we unhelpfully “identify” a specific lesson that the Lord is teaching to hurting people. Generally speaking, we know all things happen to help us learn ...Read More

  • Surprised by Suffering

    Genesis 50:15–21

    At the outset of our look at suffering, we must realize that Scripture does not give us all the reasons for our pain in this life. In fact, we may never understand why we suffer the way we do on ...Read More

  • Take Me Back to Canaan

    Genesis 50

    Though Joseph did not know how God would bring His people back to Canaan, he did have a lifetime of experience to testify that the Lord is always utterly faithful to His promises, even when it seems He is taking ...Read More

  • The Angel Brings Judgment

    1 Chronicles 21

    Our culture is accustomed to seeing Jesus as meek and mild; indeed, this is an accurate picture of Him. Yet it is not a full-orbed depiction, for He is also the great Judge to come who will execute God’s ...Read More

  • The Everlasting King

    Psalm 145

    Because God’s kingdom is everlasting, we can be confident that He will overcome all of His and our enemies. No foe can outlast Him, and nothing will ever cause His throne to fall. We should therefore be unafraid that ...Read More

  • The Eyes of the Lord

    1 Peter 3:10–12

    When we relate the command to bless our enemies to the rest of Scripture we may fall into one of two extremes. We can either put ourselves into unnecessary dangers by refusing always to defend ourselves, or we can use ...Read More

  • The Foolishness of Kings

    Esther 5:1–6:13

    Paul tells us we must subject ourselves to the ruling authorities (Rom. 13:1–7). Yet in submitting to human governments, let us never forget that their authority is not ultimate and that their power is not absolute. In fact ...Read More