June 19, 2023

Does God Only Bless?

R.C. Sproul
Does God Only Bless?

Many people are willing to believe in a God who blesses, but few will stomach the notion that He also judges. Today, R.C. Sproul calls us to embrace the God who is both sovereign and holy, for there is no other.


You all know what happened on 9/11. And immediately after 9/11, everybody in the world was asking me as a theologian, "Where was God on 9/11?"

I said, "He was in the same place He was on 9/10 and on 9/12. He didn't move."

"Well, how could God allow these things to happen?"

And then bumper stickers appeared all over the place on cars with this prayer, "God bless America." We are a people who believe that God can bless a nation, but refuse to accept the idea that God can judge a nation. And the reason for that dichotomy, dear friends, is because we don't know who God is, because the God of popular religion is not holy.

It's not the God that is being introduced here, "I am the Lord. There is none other. I bring prosperity. I bring calamity. I bring the bear market. I bring the bull market. I raise kingdoms up. I tear kingdoms down. I make the light. I make the darkness." The two books that I've written that have received more response than any other two are The *Holiness of God* and *Chosen by God*. And I can't tell you how many people I have met, who have said to me, "You know, I read that book on *Holiness of God*, and it just blew me away. It just gave me such an exalted, lifted up view of the majesty of God. Then I read *Chosen by God*, and I didn't like that one at all."

And I said, "Well, one of two things, either you didn't understand *The Holiness of God* or you didn't understand *Chosen by God*." Because the God who is holy is the God who is sovereign. The God who is transcendent in His majesty is the Lord. He brings good things. He brings bad things. Job understood that when he said, "The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord."

That's the God with whom we have to do. You may not like Him. Let me give you some pastoral counsel if you don't like this God. Tough. Because, dear folks, it's the only one we have. That's what God is saying, "I am the Lord. You may try to make another one. You might try to fashion another one. You might like to prefer another one. But there is no other. I am the Lord, your God. There is no other."