Monday, June 24, 2013

Who's in charge here?

The world around us seems to be always shifting, with catastrophe just around the corner. Whether we are reading the headlines of events in Syria, Egypt, or Turkey, or of tensions between the U.S. and Russia or China, it appears we are constantly on the verge of a major conflict at the mercy of a handful of world leaders. What a blessing to read today’s verse as a reminder of the sovereignty of our God, who controls ALL things! Even the kings of the earth are under His mighty hand.

The king's heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord;

    he turns it wherever he will. (Proverbs 21:1 ESV)

Jon Courson, in his Application Commentary: Old Testament, Vol. 2, reminds us how God used a ruler to fulfill one of the prophecies about Christ:

 “Caesar Augustus was one of the greatest leaders of all time, at least in the eyes of man. When he decided to tax the whole world, he no doubt felt potent as he ordered the entire world to go to the cities of their birth. In reality, however, who was pulling the strings of Caesar Augustus’ heart? God. You see, when Jesus was about to be born, Mary was in the city of Nazareth. Yet Micah declared that Messiah would be born in Bethlehem, the city of David (5:2). So what would compel Mary and Joseph to make the journey to Bethlehem? { my note: let’s remember that Mary was at full term in her pregnancy and would have to travel on the back of a donkey!!!!! } God the Father simply pulled the strings of His puppet, Caesar Augustus, to order everyone to their home towns to be taxed. And in so doing, Joseph and Mary traveled to Bethlehem, perfectly fulfilling Micah’s prophecy.” (P.246)

I don’t know about you, but this little verse in Proverbs so greatly encourages me! We don’t need to get our panties in a twist over the ineptitude or corruption of leaders. Yes, we need to pray for them, and we need to be actively engaged and INFORMED as voting citizens (don’t get me started on people who vote and yet do not even know the name of our Vice President! - anyone else see the street interview of the Berkeley graduate who did not know who Joe Biden is????). However, we can always remain at peace in our hearts, no matter which party is in control or whether or not the crisis in Syria boils over. (By the way, to see how the destruction of Syria possibly figures in the End Times, check out Isaiah 17:1-6 and Jeremiah 49:23-27).

Our God is sovereign - even over the hearts of men, whether they be world leaders or those wayward children and unbelieving family members we’ve been praying over for years. Another reason to praise His glorious name!  

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