Sovereignty Paradox: God is Sovereign over EVERYTHING
That God is sovereign over everything can be a bitter pill to take. The sovereignty of God does not cancel out His goodness, but reconciling this is hard!
(Martha) We’re meeting here, and we decided to talk about what we’ve been talking about. But first I want to say, the basic foundation of my life/walk with the Lord is the sovereignty of God. That’s what He gave me in the early stage and built on, and that’s how I see the scriptures.
(John) And it has been absolutely contagious. You literally, you have an impartation of, because you’ve made it a life pillar and a life principle that you live by and you literally lay everything against that. Everything goes through a grid of His sovereignty. Your life has the essence of it. And your message has the reality of it and so it’s communicated and it’s transferred. And I literally have seen that transfer and that impartation come to me. So it’s like you’ve infused me with your own principle and pillar of God’s sovereignty, so I’ve been real grateful for that, because it’s become me. It’s taken me over. It’s now— I don’t have to think about it, it’s literally infused in me and how I see things. And I think that that’s huge for, if you can, you know, I can teach you something. I can tell you something and you can mentally assent to it but when it literally takes you over and it becomes a part of your thinking, that’s the living impartation. That’s, and you know, “not another method but a living impartation.” So…
(Martha) Oh my goodness, John. I was going to say something far less than that. That it seems that people with me have the same belief.
(John) Then I’m glad I interrupted you and went beyond you because that is the reality of what it is. If you will give yourself to it, you will embrace the sovereignty. Because the sovereignty embraces you. And it includes your entire life. You literally start reflecting your entire life through his sovereign hand and His sovereign purpose. I mean, now everything has to bow to, everything, every aspect and every part of my life has to bow to that sovereign hand. His sovereign hand. It has to bow to it. So, that’s why I’m very, very grateful. It’s a big gift. It literally, I mean, you’ve talked about how you don’t really focus on deliverance as much anymore. You know, there is an aspect of that that’s— But the responsibility, well, I don’t think you get responsibility unless you understand sovereignty. So you literally have set a, you’ve let me free. You’ve opened the cage of my own discontentment, my own struggle, my own bitterness, my own— And you said, “God is sovereign over everything. Everything! And it’s a bitter pill because you have to say, “Okay, well then, that means He allowed this painful thing in my life.” But if you say, instead of “why” not that He’s offended by a “why.” He’ll listen to your, “Why did You do this?” Sergeant Dan, you know, shaking the fist kind of thing, but if you literally say, “What was Your purpose in it? What were You looking to achieve in this painful situation?” Then it’s transformed. Then the thing that made it so painful, which is the pain itself, is released because you have a purpose. And I just, I wrote something just yesterday about the fact that, I think it actually was, I think what happened is somebody commented, I responded to their comment with this, and then I’m gonna write a post about it. That if there’s purpose to your pain, you can tolerate it, but if you just have aimless pain, it’s debilitating.
(Martha) And if life is just a random series of meaningless or interrupting events then that’s despairing. And you know, John, what you’ve said is so encouraging, so precious because not everybody wants to believe He’s sovereign. They don’t want to do the work of whatever-it-is. They may not want to do the work of communing with Him and things you don’t like. But…
(John) Well it makes you very vulnerable to Him. And some people just absolutely don’t want to be vulnerable to Him.
(Martha) It means you don’t have any power. And in walking with Him you come to know that you’re not vulnerable to mankind, you’re not defenseless against people, you’re defenseless against God and He can do what He pleases. And working through that to the point where you love Him as sovereign is no small event. And so, most people really don’t want to know, don’t want to have to be faced with the absolute sovereignty of God that is throughout the whole Scripture. But it does have to be revealed to you. His sovereignty is a revelation. But in light of that, there’s always in life a challenge and there’s been a challenge for me lately, as to who’s God, me or Him (laughs). And I realized that I was very intense about a situation, that I wanted God to do certain things. And you kind of gently said, “You have to let this go, Martha. You have to let it be.” And when I did, I saw that God had already answered all my prayers and my intensity and my anguish, and my lust for – spiritual lust was completely foolish. And out of it I got a real revelation that resistance to anything in life is resistance to God Himself. And, oh we are full of resistance. We, there are situations we don’t, that we know are wrong and that we know God should do something about. But it’s possible to take on either an intense lust to solve it, or a tremendous resistance against it. And it’s— Go ahead.
(John) From the womb. It is that… Actually in the womb (laughs).
(Martha) Yeah, it’s the old man because Romans says the old man is opposed to God. And so when I let the old man come out, that old man will— I know sovereignty deeply, I can resist situations. So anyway, I saw how much I can quench the spirit and really God, much of what God wants to do, we need to cooperate with and not oppose Him. But resistance to anything opposes Him and it means I get in the way. And what I really want, if I’m honest, is control. I either want the thing I resist to go away, or I want to control it and fix it. But I saw so clearly, and I hope I have words to say it, that when we don’t resist and we let God be God and we’re not trying to be the one who fixes it or the one who it has to be fixed on my timetable, there is such a liberty. God has complete liberty to do His own thing. And that my job, really is only prayer and no control whatsoever. The hardest thing in life is to relinquish control because the old man took control in the Garden of Eden instead of being dependent on God. What Adam and Eve did was take control by knowledge. They would rule it. So that seems like a contradiction. We can, we can quench the Holy Spirit. We’re warned against it but we can do it. And we can do it by taking a position that we know what God should do. But, and I just got, at the time it happened, we were away on a little trip and I got this, I don’t know if I’m explaining it well enough, but I saw that we can really quench the Spirit just by wanting God’s will too much in the flesh. Wanting God’s will. Does that make sense?
(John) Even, even the good thing that God’s doing, you can want it so much that you can thwart Him by wanting it.
(Martha) And that seems to contradict His sovereignty but in His sovereignty is our free will. And I won’t and don’t want to get into that ’cause I wrote a book about it, All and Only. But in seeing the damaging effects on others, of resisting life and situations, I, it just was so huge, the light that came to me about it, and I asked the Lord, “Please, continue to reveal this to me so that I can get it deeply in me.” And I wrote this down, and it’s a startling statement: “Resistance to life is our only problem and it is the sin of unbelief.” If I get anxious or even intense about situations and I want God to do something, that’s unbelief. Because when He gives us a situation, all we’re supposed to do is pray and obey. And He usually doesn’t tell me anything to do. Usually there’s nothing for me to do but pray. And if I don’t think that’s enough, then it is unbelief.
Sovereignty Paradox: God is Sovereign over EVERYTHING – Episode #585 – Shulamite Podcast
The truth that God is sovereign over everything can be a bitter pill to swallow. The sovereignty of God does not cancel out His goodness, but what a struggle it can be to reconcile this. Once we do, however, such a life and walk with Him we’ll experience!